Published by Berkley on September 14, 2020
Genres: Contemporary Romance, RomCom
Tropes: STEM, Cancer of a Parent, Sexual Harassment
Source: Berkley, Netgalley
Buy on Amazon, Buy on Audible, Buy on Libro.fm
Narrator: Callie Dalton
Length: 11 hrs and 8 mins
As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn't believe in lasting romantic relationships--but her best friend does, and that's what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.
That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor--and well-known ass. Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford's reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend. But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive's career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding...six-pack abs.
Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion. And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope.
Sometimes I just want to leave it at “this was just wonderful” because I want readers to experience this book the way I did. Just a recommendation from a fellow reader to dive in.
This book was everything. From the shy, whip-smart, funny heroine who made some questionable choices along the way but you just can’t help but love her, to the equally whip-smart, brooding, aloof hero who grows on you so fast because of the way he treats the heroine. How Adam really sees all of Olive and how she changes her opinion about Adam, that he isn’t quite the asshole everybody thinks he is.
“Olive.” He pulled her closer, pressing his lips against her forehead. “It doesn’t matter. Whatever it is that you’re crying about, I will fix it. I will make it right.”
I adored every single page of this story. Add a STEM background to it and this is my catnip. I geeked out with all the science talk. We also get a fabulous supporting cast and I especially loved Malcolm and Holden, the two LBGTQ characters who made me snort-laugh.
Ali Hazelwood’s voice is incredibly engaging. It feels like she has that amused twinkle in her eyes while writing, gleefully smiling because of the antics of her characters. I really loved that. And this is a debut author. Yes, people. A.DEBUT.AUTHOR. I can’t wait for all the books by her – I have a feeling I’ll love them just as much.
“I wish you could see yourself the way I see you.”
For all those who need a trigger warning: there is a scene of sexual harassment.