The First Kiss Hypothesis – ARC Review



“For each person in the world, there is exactly one other person who, at first kiss, causes an immediate and intense reaction.” 


Nora Reid believes scientific laws control everything, even love. With her grandparents’ epic first kiss story cemented in her brain, Nora develops a hypothesis she’s determined to prove:for each person in the world, there is exactly one other person, and at first kiss, they’ll experience an immediate and intense reaction. 

But after four years of zero-reaction kisses, she comes up with a new theory: maybe that pesky crush on her stunningly hot best friend Eli Costas is skewing her results.

She needs to get rid of him, and fast.

Eli Costas is an injury-prone lacrosse star with a problem—the one chance he had at winning over the girl next door resulted in the most epically sucktastic first kiss ever. And now she’s…trying to get rid of him? Hell no. It’s time to disprove her theory and show her exactly what she’s missing. 

Game. On.


When it comes down to it, this book was a fairly decent book. I got from it exactly what I expected form this type of YA contemporary romance novel. There was nothing really new added to the table here and that would have been fine by me, it’s just that a lot of the YA contemporary tropes it had have always been a bit problematic for me.


This is about Nora, a girl who is determined to find her one true love, which she thinks will be revealed to her by the magic of their first kiss. Basically, she’s kissed a lot of guys in the search for love and has never kissed more than one guy twice.

It’s also about her best friend, Eli, whom Nora kissed once in the 8th grade and refuses to kiss again, determining him to not be her true love due to their failed first and only kiss. All of this despite the fact that Eli is deeply in love with her, and the fact that Nora is secretly in love with him as well.

Really, so many problems would have been solved had Nora been a little less stubborn and had Eli been a little more forward.

But alas.


A major trope in fiction is the best friend who is secretly in love with the main character. I personally have always really liked that trope. My problem is when the best friend starts to feel possessive of the person they love as if they were owed that person’s devotion. And there was a little of that going on in this book with Eli actually thinking about hurting a guy who was hitting on Nora, and I just wasn’t feeling it. I never think that this is cute in books.

Another thing, this one more annoying than offensive, is Nora and her refusal to see reason. She is basing her first kiss hypothesis on her grandparents who kissed only once before falling in love and getting married like two weeks later. She then refuses to kiss anyone more than once because obviously, in science, if an experiment works once then it must be a law of the workings of the universe. Had she just tried for a second kiss so many things could have been avoided.


Overall, this was a cute, if somewhat cliche, contemporary novel, in the vein of all cute, cliche, contemporary novels. If you aren’t trying anything to blow your mind, and are just looking for a quick read, then go for it. If not, well, then it might be best to skip over this one in my opinion.

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**I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.**

{The First Kiss Hypothesis by Christina Mandelski was published by Entangled: Crush on November 6th, 2017}

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