The Rosie Project

Graeme Simsion

The Rosie Project

Don Tillman is a socially challenged genetics professor who's decided the time has come to find a wife. His questionnaire is intended to weed out anyone who's unsuitable. The trouble is, Don has rather high standards and doesn't really do flexible so, despite lots of takers - he looks like Gregory Peck - he's not having much success in identifying The One. When Rosie Jarman comes to his office, Don assumes it's to apply for the Wife Project - and duly discounts her on the grounds she smokes, drinks, doesn't eat meat, and is incapable of punctuality. However, Rosie has no interest in becoming Mrs Tillman and is actually there to enlist Don's assistance in a professional capacity: to help her find her biological father. 4.1 out of 5 based on 8 reviews
The Rosie Project

Omniscore:

Classification Fiction
Genre General Fiction
Format Hardcover
Pages 304
RRP
Date of Publication April 2013
ISBN 978-0718178123
Publisher Michael Joseph
 

Don Tillman is a socially challenged genetics professor who's decided the time has come to find a wife. His questionnaire is intended to weed out anyone who's unsuitable. The trouble is, Don has rather high standards and doesn't really do flexible so, despite lots of takers - he looks like Gregory Peck - he's not having much success in identifying The One. When Rosie Jarman comes to his office, Don assumes it's to apply for the Wife Project - and duly discounts her on the grounds she smokes, drinks, doesn't eat meat, and is incapable of punctuality. However, Rosie has no interest in becoming Mrs Tillman and is actually there to enlist Don's assistance in a professional capacity: to help her find her biological father.

Reviews

The Daily Express

Tom Cox

Out of their exchanges Simsion has fashioned a very funny and touching love story, which provides a sympathetic insight into a much-misunderstood condition, and even prompts the non-Asperger’s reader to question a lot of what is viewed as “everyday logic” (why, as Don asks, will we risk our lives to save a person from drowning, but not make a donation that could save dozens of children from starvation?).

07/04/2013

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The Times

Sarah Vine

It is not easy to create a character such as Don, with his obsessive list-making and social tin ear, without making a fool out of him. But this is something that Simsion is very careful not to do, and it is the key to the success of the book. Sure, Don’s exceptional mental wiring supplies the reader with many moments of genuine humour. But we are laughing with him, not at him, and that is an important distinction.

06/04/2013

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The Guardian

Charlotte Moore

Simsion is brilliant at getting us to read between Don's literal-minded lines. "I'm not good at understanding what other people want," Don tells Rosie. "Tell me something I don't know," she sighs. "I thought quickly ...Ahhh ... the testicles of drone bees and wasp spiders explode during sex." This good-hearted, pacy, thoroughly enjoyable novel takes a significant step towards showing that all human variants are a potential source of life‑affirming comedy.

05/04/2013

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The Daily Mail

Stephanie Cross

Graeme Simsion gets maximum mileage out of this conceit in his sympathetic novel, but his touch is blessedly light. And, as Don attempts to find the perfect mate (with the aid of a 16-page questionnaire), you can’t help but root for him.

18/04/2013

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The Evening Standard

David Sexton

The Rosie Project is a swift, amusing read, Don’s mixture of absolute directness and emotional incomprehension providing lots of  laughs. He has had sex before, hasn’t he? a colleague asks. “Of course,” Don replies. “It’s just that adding a second person makes it more complicated.” What makes this funny rather than  tragic is that Don’s condition is more a literary device than a serious study of the syndrome — and as such it presents recognisable aspects of what virtually all men secretly know they could be like without women to humanise them.

04/04/2013

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The Independent

Holly Williams

The quirky female as saviour of a lonely male is an infuriating trope in the rom-com genre, and some readers may find the message that happiness lies in embracing irrationally and your emotions simplistic and sentimental. However, The Rosie Project is a cut above Jennifer Aniston movies for two reasons. First, Don's narration is pitch perfect; a precise, formal, geeky tone conveying his rigidly scheduled, rationally detached world-view. It's easily as impressive as in an obvious predecessor, Mark Haddon's The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Second, The Rosie Project is extremely funny.

27/04/2013

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The Sunday Times

Trevor Lewis

Simsion deserves credit for fashioning a good-hearted, agreeably lightweight novel that manages to celebrate difference and champion tolerance without seeming annoyingly worthy or patronising its hero.

14/04/2013

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The Observer

Anita Sethi

Filled with engaging specificities of character and setting, the professor's struggle to understand the "fundamental, insurmountable problem of who I was" also becomes a poignant universal story about discovering how best to reconcile logic and emotion, head and heart, and connect our lives with others.

28/04/2013

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