Review: The Love Solution by Ashley Croft (arc)

the love solution ashley croft

the love solution ashley croft

Title: The Love Solution 
Author: Ashley Croft 
Series: Stand-alone 
Genre: Romance, Adult Fiction 
Publication date: August 15, 2019 
Rating: ★ 

Sisters Sarah and Molly are close, but they couldn’t be more different. Sarah runs a craft business and is obsessed with all things shiny and glam, whilst Molly is much more at home in her white coat and goggles, working in a science lab. When Molly is put onto a new assignment, she’s over the moon. It’s a high-profile, top secret project – and she has a handsome new boss to ogle at when she’s not bending over a petri dish… But when Sarah finds herself on the painful end of a disastrous break-up, no amount of Ben & Jerry’s or trashy rom-coms can cheer her up. She wants to take a more drastic approach to dealing with her heartbreak, and one that only her sister – and perhaps a sprinkle of science – can help with . . . Will Sarah find love where she least expects it, or is it really all in the chemistry?

Arc received through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

All I wanted was for this to be a light-hearted, quick summer read. That’s not asking a lot. And while the blurb definitely excited me, the book unfortunately didn’t meet any of the required criteria. About halfway in I debated DNFing but I pulled myself through. Not that I would have missed much if I hadn’t.

My first and main problem with the book is that it’s advertised as romance and that there is zero chemistry. The book is written in dual POV switching between orphan sisters Molly and Sarah and thus it contains not one but TWO developing romances; in some ways even a third. Yet I didn’t care. I can forgive a lot in chicklit books. As long as the romance is compelling there is a lot I can turn a blind eye to. But if not even that is compelling… it makes for a very boring read.

Sarah was in no way relatable (she made no sense at all) and even Molly was only slightly likable. They were very flat and superficial, as was every other character. The love interests were more or less interchangeable and apart from some stereotypical traits they had no personality or even a life. Molly and Sarah made choices I couldn’t possibly understand or stand behind and could only be explained as plot convenience. And too often there was drama for the sole purpose of DRAMA. So many things were exaggerated and could have been avoided if only people communicated.

The plot was … weird. It focused on the wrong parts of the story in my opinion and was often more tell than show. Some parts were awfully rushed while others that didn’t matter at all were given too much attention. But even then it was often just plain wrong or utterly unbelievable. This book is supposed to show empowered women but fails miserably. At some point it almost told me to feel sorry for people cheating on their partner, like boo-hoo they have it bad too. 

And then there’s the ‘love solution’ plot. Molly and her boss Ewan are working on some top-secret artificial hormone that is nicknamed the ‘love bug’. It’s some sort of chemical combination that will make people fall for each other. It’s dubious in itself but the way it was used in the story was so awfully wrong I couldn’t get over it. Also, despite it being top-of-the-art and not even disclosed to other members of the company, Molly tells her sister all about it. How does that make sense? But none of that as bad as using it to make your cheating fuck of an ex-boyfriend take you back. 

The writing itself was below average. The dialogue was off. I can’t quite pinpoint what didn’t work exactly but reading it felt like watching a bad soap opera; everything obvious and melodramatic. Except for the word “shagging” probably. Never have I seen the verb “shag” used this often before. I was this close to turning the book into a drinking game.

The only good thing I can give you is that the cover of the book is cute. When I looked at it I could see myself fall in love with these characters. But a cover is not the book, you still have to open it up and take a look. ‘Cause under the cover you discover that the king may be a croo- Yeah fine, no more Mary Poppins but I guess this tells just how much I didn’t care. The book was boring and sort of problematic. Would not recommend. Moving on to better things.

` `