Review: The Rosie Project by Graeme C. Simsion

September 29, 2013

Author: Graeme C Simsion
Publisher: Penguin
Year: 2013
ISBN: 9780718178130
Rating: ★★★★☆
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Ever wondered if the large-spectacled lab ‘geeks’ fall in love? Or if the senior scientist of your institute once had his own ‘prem kahani’?

The Rosie Project is a love story; a very scientific one too, at that. And if you’re scratching your head, wondering if this is some ‘biology of love’ sorts boring textbook, then you are definitely in for a surprise. Welcome to the world of The Rosie Project. Its quirky, witty and brilliant.

A loony professor and genetics researcher working on Asperger’s, Don Tillman, realizes in his late thirties that the missing link in his lifeline is a better half. And he does take the ‘better’ quite seriously. After all you don’t simply go ahead and fall in love with a random individual; these matters are of high evolutionary and scientific consequence to our charming chap. Thus he sets out to find the perfect lady love, with a standard questionnaire in hand to eliminate wrong mate choices, and a head ready to reel in love.

In the course of meeting the perfect score women, our professor learns mating rituals like dancing and dressing up, and the art of social behavior, thanks to constant guidance from his two (and only) best friends. However our professor is unaware that ‘love conquers them all’, until the heroine, Rosie enters the picture.

A misfit in every possible sense (drinks, smokes, bartender and crazy), the professor can’t help the attraction he feels at first sight itself, adding a twist to the already twisted search. Enter more complication when Rosie reveals that she is looking for her real father, the guy who gave her the Y chromosome and disappeared from her life at once.

The writer manages to present this infuriatingly objective and nitpicky professor as a man (almost) in love, whom the reader ends up rooting for. There is something endearing about his obsession for perfection, and funny about his ways. (Can’t help wondering if he suffers from Asperger’s himself, though the storyline suggests nothing about it.) More than that the story reaches out to you as a testimony of love not being a search for the best bet, but of finding flaws you would love to fall for.

Hopelessly in love by now, the professor lets the Wife Project take a back seat and the Father Project takes over – the ‘au pair’ trying out DNA samples of ‘potential’ dads and discovering each other in this process. Curious to know what happens after that? The odd professor and his moony wanderings would definitely light up your day and make a nice read.

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Shradha Shreejaya

Still figuring the exacts.Bibliophile by choice and student by nature.

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