Hello, again! Gosh, I know that it’s only been a couple of weeks that I’ve been gone from the blog-o-sphere, but it feels like far longer than that. Probably because I’ve been pretty busy! I’m all moved into my new flat in London, but what with orientation, and the start of classes, and meeting flatmates I haven’t had much time to myself. But, as promised, I am back, and with a few new reviews lined up, too!
The first is a novel that I bought at Waterstones Piccadilly, which happens to be the largest bookstore in Europe. It is fairly humongous, and I know that I’m going to be going back there an awful lot over the next few months. Anyways, I saw The Rosie Project on display, and because I’ve heard it mentioned a few times before, I decided ‘why not?’ (The answer to the why not question, as it turns out, is there is no reason not to).
Book Review: The Rosie Project
By: Graeme Simsion
Goodreads Score: 4.02
My Score: 4.1
Highlights: Funny, the Main Character (Don), Just the Overall Feeling
Don Tillman, professor of genetics, has never been on a second date. He is a man who can count all his friends on the fingers of one hand, whose lifelong difficulty with social rituals has convinced him that he is simply not wired for romance. So when an acquaintance informs him that he would make a “wonderful” husband, his first reaction is shock. Yet he must concede to the statistical probability that there is someone for everyone, and he embarks upon The Wife Project. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which he approaches all things, Don sets out to find the perfect partner. She will be punctual and logical—most definitely not a barmaid, a smoker, a drinker, or a late-arriver.
Yet Rosie Jarman is all these things. She is also beguiling, fiery, intelligent—and on a quest of her own. She is looking for her biological father, a search that a certain DNA expert might be able to help her with. Don’s Wife Project takes a back burner to the Father Project and an unlikely relationship blooms, forcing the scientifically minded geneticist to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie—and the realization that love is not always what looks good on paper.
I really liked this book. Wait, I take that book. I really, really liked this book. I don’t meant to sound surprised or anything, but I am kind of impressed with how funny I found The Rosie Project, which I thought would be more dramatic and dry than it ended up being. Love stories can be hit or miss with me, but then, this wasn’t really a love story; it had less stereotypical romance in it than it did quirks, humorous situations, and soul-searching.
Don, the main character, was a favorite of mine from the beginning. He has Asperger’s syndrome, and as a result is much more logical, and much less emotional, than other people. This means that his thoughts sometimes shock with their bluntness, and after you’re done being shocked, than the laughs come. And if a book can make me laugh throughout, then odds are I’m going to like that book.
But beside it being quite hilarious, the Rosie Project was also engaging and touching. Two main plot lines are explored throughout the book, both of which involve searching. Don is searching for the ideal wife through use of an elaborate questionnaire, which he deems The Wife Project. Rosie, on the other hand, is searching for her real father. At first, I was really interested in the details of Don’s ‘Wife Project’. But as time went by, I became more and more focused on trying to find out who Rosie’s father might be. I had two main guesses, one of which became increasingly validated as time went by, although I won’t go into that here. I did like that the book left multiple possibilities that would make sense, leaving room (and plenty of doubts) for the reader to be either right or wrong.
I did feel that there was a tiny period around the middle where the plot started to drag on for me, probably because the beginning was so great, and then the latter half was really good, and in comparison the middle bit seemed weak. But, overall, there wasn’t much to critique about the Rosie Project. It wasn’t really my usual genre, but even so, I loved it! And I can’t wait to read Simsion’s sequel to the Rosie Project: The Rosie Effect.
Have you read The Rosie Project? If so, let me know what you thought of it! Have you read any good books lately? Have any recommendations? Again, let me know in the comments below!