book review: the rosie project

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simison

Posted January 28, 2018 by Amber in Reviews / 0 Comments

The Rosie Project

The Rosie Project

by Graeme Simsion

Series: Don Tillman #1
Publisher: Simon & Schuster on October 1, 2013
Genre: Chick Lit, Contemporary, Humor, Romance
Target Age Group: Adult
Rating: ★★★★★

Check out this book on Goodreads

An international sensation, this hilarious, feel-good novel is narrated by an oddly charming and socially challenged genetics professor on an unusual quest: to find out if he is capable of true love.

Don Tillman, professor of genetics, has never been on a second date. He is a man who can count all his friends on the fingers of one hand, whose lifelong difficulty with social rituals has convinced him that he is simply not wired for romance. So when an acquaintance informs him that he would make a “wonderful” husband, his first reaction is shock. Yet he must concede to the statistical probability that there is someone for everyone, and he embarks upon The Wife Project. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which he approaches all things, Don sets out to find the perfect partner. She will be punctual and logical—most definitely not a barmaid, a smoker, a drinker, or a late-arriver.

Yet Rosie Jarman is all these things. She is also beguiling, fiery, intelligent—and on a quest of her own. She is looking for her biological father, a search that a certain DNA expert might be able to help her with. Don's Wife Project takes a back burner to the Father Project and an unlikely relationship blooms, forcing the scientifically minded geneticist to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie—and the realization that love is not always what looks good on paper.

The Rosie Project is a moving and hilarious novel for anyone who has ever tenaciously gone after life or love in the face of overwhelming challenges.


I had completely forgotten this book was on my TBR until it popped up as available on my Overdrive wishlist!  It turned out to be a really great surprise.  The Rosie Project is light, fun, and interesting all at once.

1.  Don Tillman is an excellent character.  His narrative voice is engaging, detailed, and keeps the pacing comfortable.

2.  I surprised myself by being on again, off again about Rosie.  Sometimes I like her, sometimes I didn’t.  That made her a highly engaging character, because I wasn’t sure if I wanted them to be in love, to be friends, or to be far away from one another.

3.  While this is clearly categorized everywhere as a “fun, romantic read,” I found the analysis of Don to be the most engaging aspect of the story.  At no point in this book was I certain of the outcome, even as a “romance”.  That was nice.

4.  While it’s never specifically stated in the book, it’s widely accepted that Don has Asperger’s Syndrome.  I did a little research on this topic and found an article saying that Simison didn’t actually do much research on this topic – Don is based off people he has encountered in information technology.  Despite the lack of in-depth technical research, Don seems like a good character.  I don’t have Asperger’s myself and therefore have no real right to judge… but the community opinion of Don’s representation seems widely positive as well.

5.  I just really liked Claudia’s character.  And I wanted to punch Gene.  Or at least smack him upside the head, the self prick.

I don’t really have a lot to say about this book other than I really enjoyed it, and that I liked the characters.  It was quick, and fun… as advertised.  It’s a bit out of my normal range as well, so that was a nice change!  After The Cider House RulesThe Rosie Project hit the spot.  I’ll definitely read the sequel.

This book is perfect if you just want a nice story for a change.  Something without excessive drama.  Something light and interesting, that you can real over a weekend or on the beach.  It’s simply wonderful.

Ratings Breakdown

Setting: ★★★★★
Plot: ★★★★★
Characters: ★★★★★
Writing: ★★★★★
Pacing: ★★★★★
Narrator: ★★★★★
Personal Enjoyment: ★★★★★

5 Star Rating


Have you read this book or anything by this author?  If so, did you enjoy it?  Tell me all about your experience in the comments!

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