❈ Huge thanks to the author for providing me with an ARC in exchange for a fair review ❈
Title: Remedial Rocket Science: A Romantic Comedy
Author: Susannah Nix
Release Date: August 21st 2017
Category: New Adult
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Content Warning: Past Suicide
College student Melody Gage is craving a night of no-strings fun when she meets charming out-of-towner Jeremy, and that’s exactly what she gets. Until three years later, when Melody relocates to Los Angeles and finds herself thrust back into Jeremy’s orbit.
Not only does her hunky one-night stand work at the same aerospace company where she’s just started her dream job, he’s the CEO’s son. Jeremy’s got a girlfriend and a reputation as a bad boy, so Melody resolves to keep her distance. Despite her good intentions, a series of awkward circumstances—including an embarrassing crying jag, a latte vs. computer catastrophe, and an emergency fake date—throw her together with the heavenly-smelling paragon of hotness.
As the billionaire playboy and nerdy IT girl forge an unlikely friendship, Melody’s attraction to Jeremy grows deeper than she’s ready to admit. Will she risk it all for a shot at her happy ending?
You know those books that leave you feeling confused about what to feel & kind of lost in a way. Well, Remedial Rocket Science is one of those books.
Remedial Rocket Science is a New Adult Romance. That being said, it does not read like one. I mean that in both a good and a bad way. The good being that Nix stays away from the toxic tropes New Adult is known for like the heroine hating the hero’s girlfriend/ex-girlfriend (which I really appreciated because I honestly thought it was going to be the opposite). The bad being that it didn’t feel like a New Adult novel. Sure, there’s that New Adult trope common to stories with STEM Heroines in which the heroine doesn’t party during college, but there were a lot of points in the novel where I found myself thinking that the characters didn’t feel like the age they were supposed to be.
That feeling of confusion really characterized this read as a whole for me. Throughout the novel, in addition to it not feeling like a New Adult novel in general, it didn’t feel like a New Adult Romance, or even a Romantic Comedy like the title says. There’s some humor. I can pick out a couple good moments like when Drew pitches his generic male dominated action movie to Melody or when Melody corrects Hannah’s misassumption that the star she was wishing on was actually a star, but that was kind of it. Most of the humor was naming dropping of TV series, or Star Wars references that were pretty embarrassing. I could’ve easily gotten passed the humor fizzling if it wasn’t for the overall lack of Romance, which, in the end, was my biggest problem.
The novel does a good job a developing side characters like Lacey, Jeremy’s girlfriend, and displaying Melody’s relationships with other people besides Jeremy. However, there was too much focus on relationships between other characters, and other characters in general, rather than Melody and Jeremy. The vast majority of Remedial Rocket Science felt like Melody making friends, going to work, and then watching the messy relationship problems of the people around her. Melody took the back seat. It was kind of like a 200 page filler episode without any of the main characters. Jeremy and Melody barley saw each other. When they did, their interactions fell felt. I didn’t feel the Romance between them. There was more Romance~ for side couples like Lacey & her GF.
I think it’s noteworthy to mention that there’s bisexual representation with Lacey, but in doing so the cheating bisexual trope is used. While I don’t vehemently hate the cheating bisexual trope, I know, understandably so, that it grates a lot of other bisexual people. I enjoyed Lacey and her journey, and I didn’t think the bisexual representation was all that bad. But I wasn’t cheering in the stands over it either.
Additionally, there were a couple things that rubbed me the wrong way. One of those being the use of Melody’s last boyfriend Kieran, who is mentioned maybe twice. We learn that he was Bipolar and committed suicide. That was basically it. This was later used to further develop Jeremy and Melody’s trust~ because she tells Jeremy that she never talks about Kieran with anybody. If a story is going to mention heavy issues like that, I would’ve much preferred if it was done so because Melody still needed to work things out. Even then, I don’t like plots were side character’s mental illnesses are used solely for the main character’s angst or a couple’s development. Mental Illness representation in Romance isn’t all that common, so seeing it used as a plot device was annoying.
Would I recommend Remedial Rocket Science? Probably not.