Monday, November 18, 2013

Review - The Rosie Project

Title: The Rosie Project
Author: Graeme Simsion
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (October 1, 2013)
Format: Softcover; Pgs 305
Genre: Fiction
Source: Amazon Vine

It all boils down to Occam’s Razor. The simplest answer is usually correct.

Don Tillman is wired differently, completely oblivious to social cues and tact. He is a geneticist at a distinguished university in Melbourne and he decided that it is time to find a wife. Thus, the Wife Project. Set in his ways, Professor Tillman does not set out in a usual manner. He has devised a questionnaire. Important qualifications include items like mathematical acuity, the ability to distinguish ice cream flavors, punctuality, non-smoker, non-drinker, a proper body mass index, etc. Obviously, not a standard dating profile. Then again, Don is not your average person.

After 250 or so responses, with no candidates, Don asks his best friend Gene, a world-class lothario, for help with the project. One day Rosie knocks on his door. Don is a bit taken aback since she fits no set perimeters. Maybe Gene knows more since he has a project of his own – involving bedding one woman from every country. To Don’s lack of experience, that makes Gene more aware of women.

Turns out Rosie has a project of her own. The Dad Project. Rosie is convinced that her dad is not really her biological father and Don, being a geneticist, just might be able to help her.

Of course, that does not come out right away and as Don is trying to figure out how Gene would find Rosie to be “wife material”, Rosie is becoming more obsessed with finding dear old dad and Don is becoming infatuated - since falling in love and empathy is not on his Autism Spectrum capability wheel.

Thus begins their humorous odyssey of tracking down and DNA testing the possible men that could be Rosie’s father. Don trying desperately to figure out a complicated world that involves emotions and love. Gene and his wife Claudia trying to find a common ground and the Dean of the University coming to the end of her rope.

You will laugh, especially at the part involving the skeleton from the anatomy department; you will become frustrated, and you will begin comparing people that you have met with Don. I do not know if you will become more empathetic to Don’s plight or not, but you just might see the world involving a Standardized Meal System and to the minute scheduling a bit differently. Much like Don has to see his world differently.

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