January Reads

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

Recommended by Diane

The Rosie Effect

Unexpected, entertaining, amusing and smartly written, this book, written firmly in the romantic comedy vein, tells the story of Don Tillman, a brilliant and extremely literal-minded university geneticist who appears to have some Asperger's-like symptoms although this has not been diagnosed by any medical professional, or by himself; he is a truth teller, so I suspect if he thought he was he would pursue confirmation. Science would demand no less. Regardless he lives a highly-regimented life, with few friends due to his challenging, unusual and very awkward personality. However, he does have friends, and his family (in particular, his mom) who care for him. That being said, due to being so socially challenged he is a bit lonely, and enters into a Wife Project (with often hilarious results), meets with Rosie and becomes engaged in her Father Project (to even greater hilarity; the bartending scenes were brilliant).

He is a good professor, tries to be a thoughtful friend, proves to be both creative and risk-taking, is highly logical, deeply principled, and is very intelligent. And more than that, he is very, very endearing. I really liked him, and loved experiencing his life for a bit. It was evident from his first meeting with Rosie that she will become important to him, but despite this being obvious from the get-go, the journey was so much fun. While the tone of the book was overall lighthearted in nature, there were still moments of deep feeling wrapped around exploring the needs for companionship and caring relationships, how we may come to understand our own identities, and what opportunities are before us that can help change aspects of behaviour, and still be ourselves. Highly recommended.

Get your copy of The Rosie Project today.

 


The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion (sequel to The Rosie Project)

Recommended by Diane

The Rosie Effect

It was entertaining to spend more time in the life and head of Don Tillman, now relocated to New York City from Melbourne with his new wife. Despite his idiosyncratic ways, Don still manages to make new friends which is a good thing since he will come to need them very much, and he in turn is able to provide meaningful help to them when their lives spiral out of control. You never stop rooting for him and his happiness as he is just such a good, albeit odd, man.

While I didn't find this book to be as strong as the first, Don is wonderful and I'm not at all sorry I read it. It isn't unusual for sequels to lack some of the strengths of first books, and when the freshness revealed in the first title is now a known quantity you lose some, but certainly not all of the charm. If I could recommend one direction: don't read this immediately after the first, but do read it.

Get your copy of The Rosie Effect today.