‘The Rosie Project’ – I read it in a day. Funny, relaxing and captivating, ‘The Rosie Project’ follows Don Tillman as he tries to find love with a scientific test of his own design: The Wife Project. Needless to say, this takes an unexpected turn when Rosie enters the picture. Completely incompatible with Don, Rosie turns everything upside down in a laugh out loud story that really pulls the heart strings.
Don has Asperger Syndrome (although does not know it) which makes this tale particularly inviting. Written from his point of view, the reader can see how life is like for someone who struggles with the nuances social interactions and does not quite fit in with those around him. Starting relatively naïve about how the world works (particularly under the guidance of his not so moral-minded best friend), Don gradually comes into his own. His journey is wonderful to read and Don always keeps in character – never breaking away from what makes him, him. His voice is well-written and his story strong.
Stories written about people with Asperger Syndrome, and those on the Autistic Spectrum, can be depressing and some struggle to feel realistic, instead defining the characters by their disorder. This does not do that. While Asperger Syndrome shapes his interactions and lifestyle, Don remains firmly relatable and human. The story is light-hearted and fun, about romance, with the disorder only adding an extra dimension to the tale. However, at times the depiction of his disorder can come across as cringe-worthy, appearing to rely on stereotypes rather than real experiences.
The relationship is heart-warming too. Full of mistakes, slip-ups and moments that leave your heart aching, it does not come about easily. That only makes the end result all the more worthwhile. It is not just about the romance either. The main secondary-plot adds to the drama and contributes to the characters’ development. It is resolved nicely, and simply, but is an enjoyment to read.
I enjoyed ‘The Rosie Project’ tremendously and cannot wait to read the sequel when it comes out.
Rating: 5/5 stars