Genre/Format: Young Adult Contemporary, Own Hardcover, 236 pages
Rating: 5 / 5 Stars
Hadley is dragging her heels to get to JFK for her flight to Heathrow for her father’s wedding, an event she’s dreading. She ends up missing her flight by four minutes, and meets Oliver, a charming boy who also happens to be going home to London and seated in the very same row on the plane. This chance encounter serves as a catalyst for change in Hadley’s life and shows how love, fate and destiny can change your life in a moment’s time.
Statistical is a sweet, feel-good romance / family drama that shows 24-hours in the life of seventeen year old Hadley. Hadley resents having to attend her father’s wedding, and how he broke up their family to take up with a younger woman. The flight with Oliver is a nice diversion from these problems, and their easy conversation and instant connection makes a difficult flight much more enjoyable. Oliver is dealing with his own family drama, and it seemed the two found each other just at the right time.
The scenes on the plane were very cute, and Hadley and Oliver likable with apparent chemistry. Their connection does happen quickly, but feels natural and not un-realistic. The whole set-up felt very cinematic and like I was reading the book equivalent of a romantic comedy. Oliver is nice, funny, smart and attentive and a strong love interest. One thing I was surprised about is what a small part of the book is spent actually on the plane. But, once they land they each have to deal with their family commitments for the heavier part of the story.
The story didn’t go the way I expected, and I liked how it was messy like real life, and not all fluffy romance. The point of the trip is the wedding, and Hadley has to face her problems and make nice with her dad who seems so unrecognizable to her now. On the trip, Hadley reminisces about the time her family was together, and with Oliver’s help, tries to come to terms with the new changes in their lives.
Statistical is a cute, romantic story with substance. It’s short and sweet, and the 24-hour time frame inspired me to read it over one sitting. This charming and engaging contemporary is one that fans of Stephanie Perkins should enjoy and was a treat to read.
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