The Unified Theory of Love and Everything -Travis Neighbor Ward

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3/5 Stars

Summary: “Emerson Wheeler has everything she ever wanted: two beautiful daughters, a reliable husband, and a modest gardening business in a small town. But after her estranged father commits suicide, she has to face facts. She’s been lying to people her whole life, and her unhappy marriage is keeping her from knowing her true self.

Finn Lowell is a married father of two and a Navy police officer. After a childhood of abuse he has a hard time trusting people. Soon he must decide whether to continue in active duty and risk being deployed overseas. If he quits, he can spend the summer at his lake house alone with his sons.

When Emerson volunteers to help Sybil Hay, a reclusive physicist, with her rundown estate in Delphi, Georgia, she’s in for a surprise: Finn works there in his free time. Emerson has only met him once through her husband, but it convinced her that spending time together could be dangerous because of their attraction. Equally dangerous are Sybil’s unconventional beliefs about love, which date back to a mysterious summer she spent with Albert Einstein.”

After recently learning about Advanced Reader Copies (ARCs) of books available to bloggers, I quickly signed up for NetGalley and requested The Theory of Love and Everything to read.

For me the book was okay, but not really anything special.  It felt like it was trying to be more than it actually was.  The main story is about these two married people who fall in love while working together, but then there are the side plots of Emerson’s father committing suicide and Albert Einstein, which never feel fully developed.

All the talk about Einstein bored me, and while it was meant to be a parallel to the two main character’s relationship, it added nothing to the overall story.  When talking about him, Sybil seemed more like an old lady making up stories than someone who had actually spent time with Einstein.  If she had been talking about some random guy she had loved when she was younger it would’ve been more powerful.

As for the whole suicide “plot,” the book REALLY could have done without it.  For most of the book, it didn’t seem like the main character had been that affected by her father’s death.  I would only see it (or remember it) when she would randomly bring it up.  She talked about how it really affected her, but it wasn’t shown in the story at all.

I did enjoy watching the relationship between Emerson and Finn grow, though it took FOREVER for anything to happen and then the book was over.

I’d recommend the book if you enjoy a slower paced literary romance.

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