Book Review – The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood


Title: The Love Hypothesis

Author: Ali Hazelwood

Publisher: Berkley

Publication date: September 14th, 2021

384 pages

5/5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis

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.


“carry yourself with the confidence of a mediocre white man”

Ali Hazelwood, The Love Hypothesis

TW: sexual harassment

I want to preface this by saying I know the author is a scientist and has been in the academic community for a long time, much like the characters in this book. I am not a scientist but have spent a lot of my life in academia as well and I had to suspend a lot of disbelief that this relationship was allowed and not considered unethical or a dual relationship with the power dynamic between the two. I understand they didn’t work directly together, but it still really rides that line. So, going into this understand that depending on your education this might need to be ignored.

When I put that bit to the side, I LOVED THIS BOOK. Olive is a chaotic whirlwind mess and Dr. Adam is a calm, cool, collected villain of the biology department. None of this should have worked, but fake dating makes two people do crazy things. Also, I adore fake dating and is one of the best romance tropes in my humble opinion so I knew I would be trash for this no matter what else happened. BUT… Ali Hazelwood broke the fourth wall and discussed the fact that fake dating is a romance trope and Olive knew exactly what was happening!!! I haven’t had a book really lean into that before and it was very appreciated.

I’m obsessed with these characters and this book and I will scream about it for awhile. So all you romance lovers out there pick up this book stat. I think it also just hit the NY Times Bestseller List!

Happy reading, folks!

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