Love on the Brain by Ali Hazelwood
A book review by Mina Nguyen
Love on the Brain is a witty, workplace enemies-to-lovers, young adult swoon-worthy STEM rom-com contemporary read. Bee Kongiswasser is a Marie Curie fan. Besides loving Marie Curie and maybe being her #1 biggest fan, Bee is also a neurologist which means she deals with jerks all day as a woman in a STEM field. In order to combine her love of Marie Curie and STEM, Bee created a secret twitter account to attack the issues of how women in STEM are treated in the workplace with the motto of “What would Marie do?” In order to pursue her dream job at NASA, Bee must work with her arch nemesis, Levi Ward, who has hated her from the first moment he saw her at grad school. When her equipment doesn’t show up and emails go unanswered, she blames Levi, her “co”-lead. After confronting him, she realizes that Levi might not be the one behind the problems. As Bee continues to warm up to Levi, she realizes that Levi might not hate her as much as she believes, and she might have to ask herself what she would do.
Love on the Brain was one of my most anticipated reads of the year after absolutely loving The Love Hypothesis, and this book delivered. I loved everything, from the comical moments to the stolen glances and touches. This book was great! Before discussing the romance, I want to talk about the phenomenal research Hazelwood put into this book. Hazelwood does a great job of incorporating STEM into her books. She clearly devotes research into accurately finding information about Bee’s workfield. Hazelwood clearly makes Bee’s job a part of her life rather than just having her life singularly revolve around romance. Her great research allows her characters to have personalities and flaws, which make them relatable characters whose lives don’t revolve around romance alone. I also found this book commercial and it had me laughing a few times. The side characters are well-developed and are just as interesting as the main characters.
The romance in this book was top tier. The tension was off the charts! Hazelwood writes great romance, not because of the tropes she incorporates but because of the natural way the characters fall for each other. Their relationship progresses very naturally for a contemporary romance following the enemies-to-lovers trope. I also love the conversations the characters have about the fear of trusting another person after Bee’s engagement failed to make it to the wedding altar. The issues of trust in romantic relationships were well discussed. There were also a lot of cute moments that were super original and that I’ve never read before in a romance book, which is rare for contemporary romances.
All in all, this book was great and I loved every moment of it. It was light-hearted and fun with great relationship development. It definitely met my expectations as one of my most anticipated reads for 2022. I recommend this book for anyone in need of a quick read with great characters and an even better romance!
The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood / Not Here to be Liked by Michelle Quach / Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Soloman / My Mechanical Romance by Alexene Farol Follmouth / As if on Cue by Marisa Kanter