- Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers (May 21 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1443422665
- ISBN-13: 978-1443422666
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2.1 x 22.9 cm
- Shipping Weight: 381 g
- Average Customer Review: 456 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #20,334 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Rosie Project Paperback – Deckle Edge, May 21 2013
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“Crackling with wit and boasting an almost perfectly calibrated heartbreak-to-romance ratio. . . . Joins ranks with the best romantic comedies of our age.” (The Globe and Mail)
“A funny and profound book about being comfortable with who you are and what you’re good at. . . . It is one of the most enjoyable novels I’ve read in a long time.” (Bill Gates)
“Sometimes you just need a smart love story that will make anyone, man or woman, laugh out loud.” (San Francisco Chronicle)
“A romantic comedy with sublime character precision. . . . Extremely funny.” (The Independent)
“An utterly winning screwball comedy. . . . Sharp dialogue, terrific pacing, physical hijinks, slapstick, a couple to root for, and more twists than a pack of Twizzlers.” (NPR.org)
Filled with humor and plenty of heart, The Rosie Project is a delightful reminder that all of us, no matter how we’re wired, just want to fit in.” (Chicago Tribune)
“Warm-hearted and perfectly pitched, with profound themes that are worn lightly, this very enjoyable read promises to put Don Tillman on the comic literary map somewhere between Mr Pooter and Adrian Mole.” (The Guardian)
“One of the year’s most promising and original novelists.” (Wall Street Journal)
“Read-out-loud laughter begins by page two. . . . This novel is perfectly timed.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“Polished debut fiction. . . . Simsion can plot a story, set a scene, write a sentence, finesse a detail. A pity more popular fiction isn’t this well written. . . . A sparkling, laugh-out-loud novel.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
About the Author
GRAEME SIMSION is the author of the #1 bestseller The Rosie Project, which has been optioned for film by Sony Pictures, was a Globe and Mail Best Book of the Year and won the Australian Book Industry Association Book of the Year. The Rosie Effect was also a #1 Globe and Mail bestseller, an instant New York Times bestseller and a People magazine Pick of the Week. Simsion lives in Australia with his wife, Anne, and their two children. Follow him on Twitter @GraemeSimsion.
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Don Tillman is 39 years old, tall, fit and an intelligent Genetics Professor. His best friend, Gene, a psychology professor, has asked Don to fill in for him and give a lecture on Asperger's syndrome. Don agreed, but he would have to focus on the genetic aspects of the syndrome, which probably would be unfamiliar to the audience. There were children between the ages of 8-13 along with their parents in the audience. After the lecture, the parents didn't quite understand, but the children seemed to. Don informed them that Asperger's syndrome is something you are born with. The children stood on their chairs, punching the air and chanting "Aspies Rule." Don felt he had made his point effectively.
Don has learned that married men were much happier and lived longer. So Don put together a 16 page questionnaire to help him find the right woman. He named it The Wife Project. Claudia, a clinical psychologist and Gene's wife introduced him to a few women. The first was Elizabeth. She had very firm ideas, which Don would soon come to find out. They went to a Thai restaurant. Elizabeth arrived on time which was a plus. When it came to dessert, she wanted apricot ice-cream. She would not accept another flavour. Don took her to an ice-cream parlour across the road. The flavour had to be apricot or she would pass. They had every flavour but apricot. Don named it The Apricot Ice-Cream Disaster.
Date #2 was named Olivia, a Hindu woman, who was an anthropologist. She arrived 28 minutes late. She was named The Late Woman. When Don asked her if she was a vegan, she said she wasn't. He asked her if she eats ice-cream. Her reply was "as long as it was not made with eggs." Despite this, Olivia was excellent company. They talked and talked until they were the last people to leave. They exchanged contact information and then went their separate ways.
Don was slowly finding out that the questionnaire wasn't working out too well.
Don lived a very structured life filled with routines, timetables and everything he did had a Project title to it. He was awkward in social situations. Perhaps he has Asperger's syndrome. His pantry was organized by the day. The ingredients he will use were prepared for that day.
Gene decided to change things and not stick to the questionnaire. Gene introduces Don to Rosie Jarman. Don planned on taking Rosie to an exclusive restaurant named Le Gavroche. He made reservations online under the name of the Dean so that he could have a VIP table. When he arrived, he was told that they have a dress code and he wouldn't be allowed to wear his Gore-Tex jacket. Don couldn't understand why and a fight ensued between Don and the doormen. Rosie arrived and ended the fight. She knew the men, since she once worked there. They still had to leave. Rosie was hungry, so she decided that Don would make dinner for both at his home. Rosie was a bundle of joy and so full of life. Rosie moved things outdoors and dinner was eaten there. She wasn't anything like the questionnaire Don had prepared. so he had no intention of considering her as a prospective wife, but opposites attract they say. Into the conversation, Rosie told Don her mother had died when she was only ten years old and she was now looking for her biological father. Don was a geneticist and he could certainly help her. They spoke for hours and now he would put his Wife Project on hold for the time being. He would begin by The Father Project followed by The Rosie Project and so The Rosie Project began.
The Rosie Project is the first book that Graeme Simsion has written. It's an unusual story with a character you will come to love. Don Tillman is quirky, hilarious and logical. You will be transported to a world full of laughs, so cozy up in your favorite chair and enjoy this delightful book.
The Rosie Project is a love story between a geneticist, Don, looking for The Perfect Wife, and a psychology PhD student, Rosie, trying to find her biological father. Don is a highly logical, rational man with a perfectly regimented life and penchant for alcohol. Rosie is a rebellious feminist with a smoking habit and a preference for sustainable seafood. They are unsuitable for each other, and yet…
You’ll notice that I gave this book only 3 stars. That’s not because it was a bad book or because I didn’t enjoy it. In fact, I read it in a weekend.
First, the really good things. My favourite element of the book was the narrative voice. The story is told from Don’s point of view, which means that you get in the head of a (possibly Asperger) scientist who must reflect rationally on everything. It’s interesting to see him analyze his feelings from a non-emotional point of view, and also to see how his relationship with Rosie both deepens his understanding of his own character and inserts irrational elements to his life. How he deals with the irrationality and his heightened emotional state is the most fascinating and interesting part of the book.
However, the novel carries the skeleton of its origin as a movie script–specifically, a romantic comedy. It touches on all the story points: a meeting over a misunderstanding, initial attraction followed by the knowledge that the two are incompatible, falling in love over a common project that forces them together anyway, idyllic getaway where something almost happens, first fight, adjustment, dark moment, reconciliation and finally, you guessed it, marriage. It was all rather conventional and easy to follow.
Not that it’s a bad thing, if you like to read things that are conventional. Romantic comedies provide a certain type of pleasure, when you’re looking for that kind of thing. I’m not a big watcher of romantic comedies; they are generally too similar and idyllic, and when you’ve seen one, you’ve basically seen them all.
Aside from the main character, who is a strange but strangely likeable nerd, The Rosie Project is not a subversive novel challenging the conventions of the romantic genre. But as a member of its species, it’s a pretty successful one. It’s lighthearted, funny and leaves you with a warm, fuzzy feeling inside. It doesn’t make you roll your eyes in annoyance and actually makes you smile quite often. So, for that, I give it major props, as my only foray into romance novels mostly turned me off the genre.
If you’re in a mood for a quick, easy read in an airplane or on the beach, or if you enjoy romantic comedies, The Rosie Project will be a pleasurable experience for you. It doesn’t make you think too hard, makes you feel good about the possibility of finding love in the strangest corners and gives you a glimpse of how people with Aspergers or highly functional autism might process the world around them. It was definitely a fun read.
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