Author: Jennifer E SmithPublisher: HeadlinePublication Date: 5 Jan 2012Source: Amazon VineRating: 5/5Synopsis from Goodreads
Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?
Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. She's stuck at JFK, late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon to be step-mother that Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's in seat 18B. Hadley's in 18A.
Twists of fate and quirks of timing play out in this thoughtful novel about family connections, second chances and first loves. Set over a 24-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.
I will warn you in advance that I am so going to gush over this one. It is AWESOME. I know you are probably going into shock at the fact that I read an actual romance, not a vampire or werewolf in sight [ ; D ] That is why I am posting the review on Valentines Day as my one concession to this Hallmark Day.
One thing that stood out for me right from the beginning was the feel I had of watching a play unfolding before more rather than just reading a book. The third person narrator had a physical presence of its own within the story. Although not omniscient it did allow for a larger/closer/more in depth appreciation of the relationships and interactions. At points I felt as if there was a spotlight focusing on different aspects of importance, literally sweeping across the stage that is the plot. Gorgeous realistic descriptions from the weather to the buildings added to the pictures I had running through my head.
I love how fate, destiny, coincidence, whatever you want to call it - all add together to lead you on a certain path. Even if the smallest thing were to happen differently the events could be transformed. It really does make you think.The time at the beginning of each chapter in EST and GMT provided a lovely visual timeline for the story.
The attraction between Oliver and Hadley is almost an entity in itself. Oliver, 18, British yet studying at Yale, leads us to believe he is intelligent. The word CHARMING always comes to mind when I think of Oliver. There are family problems that are hinted at within the narrative as well as a mystery surrounding the event he is attending in London. The way in which the story unfolds regarding Oliver lead me to jump to all sorts of scenarios. Hadley on the other hand is only slightly younger but appears somewhat neurotic as a result of her parents separation/divorce. So much so that she has developed claustrophobia. To begin with I did find her slightly naive and immature but her character development throughout the book was a delight to follow.
The beautiful writing captures the emotions of the characters perfectly and enveloped me in them. I was carried along, so much so that I became personally invested in the outcome. Flash backs add depth to the story and provided even more of a 'play watching' feel to the whole thing.
The depiction of the way a child feels about their parents marrying someone else really stood out for me. How treasured memories can become tainted and the relationship between parent and child is forever altered.
So in short this book is FLIPPIN' AMAZING and you should all go read it. Even if you are as jaded and cynical about romance as I am [ : D ]