The Improbably Theory of Ana and Zak is Brian Katcher’s hilarious he said/she said romance about two trends recovering from heartbreak and discovering themselves on an out-of-this-world accidental first date.
When Ana Watson’s brother ditches a high school trip to run wild at the Washingcon science fiction convention, type-A Ana knows that she must find him or risk her last shot at freedom from her extra-controlling parents.
In her desperation, she’s forced to enlist the last person she’d ever want to spend time with – slacker Zak Duquette – to help find her brother before morning comes.
But over the course of the night, while being chased by hordes of costumed Vikings and zombies, Ana and Zak begin to open up to each other. Soon, what began as the most intense nerd fighter manhunt transforms into so much more…
This was one of the funniest books I’ve read in a long time. I didn’t really know what to expect going into this book, but it was somehow everything I wanted it to be. It had a very fun and engaging story that I completely flew through (I barely even took any notes). This novel is super fast-paced and I finished it in about 2-3 hours.
Nothing about this book was predictable. Whenever I thought I knew what was going to happen next, something way beyond my wildest imagination would happen. There was something funny going on on almost every second page and I actually found myself laughing out loud some many times. There were also a lot of references to popular sci-fi series and it really appealed to the nerd in me. While the blurb of the book mentions Ana and Zak recovering from heartbreak, that was not a very big part of the story. This was definitely not a heavy and serious read. There were some serious parts but it was mostly light-hearted and funny.
I did have a little bit of a problem with the book at the beginning. It felt a little bit juvenile and I couldn’t really see the characters as 17-18 year olds. They seemed more like 15 year olds to me. I didn’t connect with Ana or Zak at the beginning. Ana was a bit snobby and pretentious and Zak…was just not my cup of tea. But they really grew on me as the story progressed and we got to see different sides of them. The story and the characters really picked up for me when we got to the convention, which luckily wasn’t too far into the book. At that point, I started to see them as more mature characters and I really grew to like the both of them by the end of the book. I thought the character development of both characters was done very well. The development occurred throughout the book and didn’t feel forced. I also liked that we got to read from both of their perspectives in alternating chapters.
There were some hilarious side characters in this book. We have a crazy girl named Strawberry who spoke in a funny way that made me laugh every single time. Here’s a quick scene with Strawberry, Zak and Ana, which I think illustrates the humour in this book and how unexpected everything is:
Strawberry’s smile fades. “You know what I want, Duke.” Her voice is now lower, normal. Almost sultry…
Duquette glaces at me with the air of someone about to do something shameful. He then straightens his spine and smiles at Strawberry.
“You’re as wonderful as a smile made of rainbows made of ice cream. You’re as pretty as a daffodil in a field of gumdrops. You’re as adorable as a kitten dressed like a bunny.”
I’d honestly recommend this book to anyone who wants a good laugh, or anyone in a reading slump. This was a very quick and light read and definitely perfect for any sci-fi fans out there.