Review: The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion

The Rosie EThe rosie effectffect by Graeme Simsion
Genre: Contemporary, Adult
Published by: Penguin
Pages: 411
Format: ARC E-Book
Rating: ★★★
The Rosie Project (#1)
Where to Find: Goodreads | Amazon

I finally did it! It feels like I’ve been reading this book for ages and now it’s finally over. Am I relieved? Maybe.

I really did enjoy ‘The Rosie Project’, the first book in this series. It was different, fresh and new (and one of the only new adult books I’ve read so I didn’t have much to compare it too!) But this book…well, it didn’t spend five years in the making.

Things I loved about this book include:
– Don’s consistent personality: just because he got his Rosie happy ending didn’t mean he lost any of the quirkiness he had before Rosie.
– The introduction of George, Dave and Sonia: lovely additional characters, who all helped Don grow as a person in some way.
– The gradual progression of the relationship between Don and Rosie: Data – check. Marriage – check. Pregnant – check.
– Some humorous episodes, like the Plane Incident: sometimes I wonder how Simsion researched these things….

Things I didn’t love about the book:
– How one person’s opinion defined Don’s capability to be a father.
– The distance between Don and Rosie that did not coincide with a year of marriage.
– The web of deceit that was created: it felt kind of like a Shakespeare play, complete with pretending to be someone else!
– Rosie’s inability to accept Don for who he was and actually pay attention to all the effort he was making to improve his chances of being a good father, no matter how many court trials were drawn up against him.

That’s a pretty balanced list! (and definitely something Don would appreciate.) There were a lot of elements within the book that reminded me of ‘The Rosie Project’ and showed great continuity between the characters. I was a little confused, in ‘The Rosie Project’ to how long Don and Rosie were actually together (it turned out to be six months or something!) and a year of marriage on top of that did little to show how much they understood each other.
I guess that’s the problem with loving someone who is so different from you. Sometimes you won’t see eye to eye. I just wish that Don and Rosie were able to reach more of a compromise, rather than doing what Rosie wanted the majority of the time.

I’d recommend this book to people that liked the first (we all know how risky a sequel is!) and to anyone that’s interested in reading about a more adult relationship. Overall, I’d give this book about 3 stars, because the negatives drew a lot from the positives.

(The UK haven’t got a very interesting cover for this series!)

Review: The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

the-rosie-projectThe Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
Genre: Contemporary, Adult
Published By: Penguin
Pages: 298
Format: Paperback
Rating: ★★★.5
The Rosie Effect (#2)
Where to Find: Goodreads | Amazon

I know what you’re all thinking about the cover. Lobster? Not that relevant.

‘The Rosie Project’ by Graeme Simsion can best be described as John Green for adults. Although marketed on NetGalley as a young adult book, after reading I feel that new adult would be a better category. This book would definitely fit alongside ‘Landline’ by Rainbow Rowell on your bookshelves.

So, we follow the perspective of Don, a geneticist who’s socially inept. It’s never explicitly mentioned, but I assumed he had a mild case of autism which, in his job, worked to his advantage. His main aim is to gain a wife as he believes he is incompatible within a relationship and can count the number of friends he has on one hand.

Of course, with his methodical brain, he develops a questionnaire to find the perfect partner. But, if romantic comedies have taught me anything, it’s that what you want isn’t necessarily what you get. Enter Rosie, your factory setting manic pixie dream girl. She allows Don to change himself and improve his reactions to society. Rosie pushes him out of his comfort zone and strict schedule in order to show him what he’s missing out on.

Your typical Alaska girl, complete with desired figure and a bad smoking habit.

Despite the formulaeic character of Rosie, Don was a breath of fresh air as a protagonist. He wasn’t afraid to question why people do things and the morals of their actions. He was intelligent and an accomplished person in many extra-curricular activies. If it wasn’t for his inability to feel comfortable in social situations, he would have been the most popular guy around.

In order to gain the affections of Rosie, he helps her to discover the identity of her real father. This created the bulk of the plot. At first, I thought I’d guessed it straight away but when the truth came out, I never saw it coming. The Father Project was meticulous but not ridiculous. and I found myself more than pleased with the result (though I did question Rosie for finding a problem with everything.)

Just like ‘Landline’, I wasn’t expecting a mature book. I should have been more clued in, seeing as the characters are thirty-nine and twenty-nine (talk about an age difference!) so I couldn’t  complexly understand the situations they were in. Yet, this did not hinder my enjoyment of the novel.

I don’t want to spoil anything, but one of my main complaints with the book was its rapid last chapter. It was like ending a book with ‘and they lived happily ever after’ without actually describing any events that led to their eventual happiness.

Overall, I would give ‘The Rosie Project’ 3.5 stars, just because I didn’t completely fall in love with the book, and Rosie was quite generic as love interests go. That said, I did laugh out loud quite a few times, which will always bolster the star rating of a novel.