Love, Theoretically Book Review

Title: Love, Theoretically
Author: Ali Hazelwood
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
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Rival physicists collide in a vortex of academic feuds and fake dating shenanigans in this delightfully STEMinist romcom from the New York Times bestselling author of The Love Hypothesis and Love on the Brain.

The many lives of theoretical physicist Elsie Hannaway have finally caught up with her. By day, she’s an adjunct professor, toiling away at grading labs and teaching thermodynamics in the hopes of landing tenure. By another day, Elsie makes up for her non-existent paycheck by offering her services as a fake girlfriend, tapping into her expertly honed people-pleasing skills to embody whichever version of herself the client needs.

Honestly, it’s a pretty sweet gig—until her carefully constructed Elsie-verse comes crashing down. Because Jack Smith, the annoyingly attractive and broody older brother of her favourite client, turns out to be the cold-hearted experimental physicist who ruined her mentor’s career and undermined the reputation of theorists everywhere. And that same Jack who now sits on the hiring committee at MIT, right between Elsie and her dream job.

Elsie is prepared for an all-out war of scholarly sabotage but…those long, penetrating looks? Not having to be anything other than her true self when she’s with him? Will falling into an experimentalist’s orbit finally tempt her to put her most guarded theories on love into practice?

book review

Ali Hazelwood is probably the only author who can disappoint me without actually disappointing me. Love, Theoretically was most definitely fun and enjoyable, and I binged in a day. However, it’s the same story as in her previous books and novellas – a very tall and big guy falls for a girl, and said girl thinks he hates her and wants to ruin her scientific career, all while the guy actually does everything he can to protect her.

Jack Smith is my favourite of Ali Hazelwood’s men, because he is so raw, makes mistakes too (like a human being should), and has a bit of a bad-boy vibe, which I love. Elsie is a bit of a compulsive liar (she is a people-pleaser) but I didn’t find that as annoying as I thought it would be. More annoying to me was her self-consciousness – when a man tells you repeatedly he is attracted to you, that means that he is, in fact, attracted to you. I also loved the diabetes rep in this book.

Overall, it’s a fun read, which will make you smile, and probably love Jack Smith (especially after the spicy scenes). So I recommend it, especially if you liked some of her previous books.

‘A Curse So Dark and Lonely’ Brigid Kemmerer


I had such great expectations reaching for ‘A Curse So Dark and Lonely’ mostly because of everyone’s great reviews, and I was really disappointed. It was a really twisted retelling of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ – definitely one involving more blood. The only thing resembling the Disney fairy-tale was the presence of a prince, a monster and a curse. There weren’t any talking clocks or candlesticks, there wasn’t a smart or kind princess and there were too many people – the whole point of the Beast was his loneliness and his isolation from the world. The entire love story was really non-existent, and the curse-breaking was so accidental I almost have no idea how it happened. Additionally, the last character was such a plot twist – it was really unlikely and forced. It’s obvious that the author had a second book in mind, but in my opinion, she should’ve stuck to one. Additionally, the world-building was a little bit unclear to me. What was positive about ‘The Curse So Dark and Lonely’ was the writing – despite its faults, the book was easy to read. I managed to read it in two sittings, even though the characters and the plot annoyed me.

I swear, all the main characters are written strictly to annoy the hell out of me. Harper is such an annoying, non-decision and reckless character, and I couldn’t stand her throughout the book. The continuity of her getting everyone in trouble just because she had to have it her way made me want to properly shake her (or slap her). Grey was a great character, always staying in his role as a Commander, but I couldn’t help but think that he was too stiff? After all that time with Rhen, he was still the same strict soldier – that’s a bit hard to believe. Rhen is a typical, spoilt prince, but it’s clear he is overwhelmed with the choices he made before. While reading the story from Rhen’s point of view, I also felt like his regret was forced – there were too many thoughts regarding his past to make it believable. Despite his dissimilarity to the original Beast, he was probably the best part of this book – the most intriguing one, always calculating and thinking ahead. I feel like I should talk about the enchantress, Lilith, who was a villain in this story. But she was evil to the bone, without any backstory, but as we all know the best villains should have a good backstory. The characters in ‘A Curse So Dark and Lonely’ were meant to be complexed and unorthodox, but they ended up being annoying and every single of their traits appeared to be enforced and unnatural.

The book was either boring or really rushed, and the plot repeated the same schemes all the time – Harper runs, Rhen and Grey follow her, save her and help the people of Emberfall. Rhen fell in love with Harper really quickly – too quickly, considering that the only thing that fascinated him about Harper was her constant rebellion and resistance. I wouldn’t recommend ‘A Curse So Dark and Lonely’ unless you really like twisted fairytales and the main characters don’t bother you.


A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what’s at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin. (via