The Rosie effect A novel

Graeme C. Simsion

Book - 2014

"Don and Rosie are happily married, living in New York, and unexpectedly expecting their first child. Don sets about learning the protocols of becoming a father, but his unusual research style gets him into trouble"--

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FICTION/Simsion Graeme
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1st Floor FICTION/Simsion Graeme Due May 6, 2024
Subjects
Genres
Romance fiction
Published
New York : Simon & Schuster 2014.
Language
English
Main Author
Graeme C. Simsion (-)
Edition
First edition
Physical Description
352 pages
ISBN
9781476767314
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

*Starred Review* In this winning sequel to his best-selling debut novel, The Rosie Project (2013), Simsion throws the life-altering complication of fatherhood at Don Tillman. Although the genetics professor has not formally been diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome, he is extremely driven by logic, finds it difficult to read people, and very much dislikes being touched. He is now married to his ideal woman, but when Rosie announces she's pregnant, it touches off a series of events that leads Don to the brink of losing his freedom, his job, and his new life. It's a credit to Simsion's creation and his exceptionally observant narration that the reader usually understands what Don's family and friends are thinking better than he does. The awkwardness that results, labeled by Don with such monikers as the Playground Incident or the Antenatal Uproar, is both hilarious in its execution and striking when seen through Don's eyes. Notably, Simsion never pokes fun at Don for his challenges. His friend tells him he can solve problems in his own unique way, and he does so delightfully. Readers will cringe when Don responds inappropriately or plunges ahead unaware of the emotional undercurrents, and cheer when he gets it right. The Rosie Effect is a celebration of the best attributes to be found in a friend, a husband, or a father, regardless of the way they are expressed.--Thoreson, Bridget Copyright 2014 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

This sequel to 2013's The Rosie Project finds brilliant but socially inept Australian geneticist Don Tillman married to medical grad student Rosie Jarman and living in N.Y.C. Don's orderly life is upended when Rosie gets pregnant and Don's friend Gene moves in with them. Much of the humor involves Don's mishaps as he struggles to manage things in a logical way, while misinterpreting social situations and taking people's words too literally (he doesn't get sarcasm, rhetorical questions, or hyperbole). In the wrong hands, this type of character might come across as unemotional or cold, but Australian narrator O'Grady strikes the perfect chord, conveying Don's earnest desire to do the right thing, his befuddlement when he messes up, and his genuine love for Rosie-all with Don's rigid thought process and likable quirkiness. O'Grady also does a good job differentiating between different characters: he speaks in a higher register for women and uses a tough-guy voice for a cop, and even makes a somewhat successful attempt at a New York accent for several characters. This is an excellent narration of a highly entertaining story. A S&S hardcover. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review

Don Tillman is back in this sequel to The Rosie Project. After the extremely logical genetics professor discovered his surprising ability to connect emotionally with Rosie, they married and are now living in New York City. They've settled into their happily ever after when life is seriously disrupted by Rosie's unexpected (by Don) pregnancy. As Don tries to cope with the introduction of a third party into their relationship and figure out if he's capable of being a father, the growing distance between him and Rosie becomes almost insurmountable. The chain of events that unfolds involves a run-in with the NYPD, a washed-up English musician, a pregnant cow, a lot of research, a lot of alcohol, and the Transportation Security Administration. Simsion offers plenty of insights through Don's unique take on the world before wrapping things up neatly. Narrator Dan O'Grady reprises his role with a perfect mixture of warm Australian drawl and deadpan delivery, allowing the humor in Don's various predicaments to shine through. VERDICT While the sequel isn't quite up to the level of The Rosie Project, it retains much of the first book's charm and humor-readers will be rooting for Don and Rosie all the way. ["Readers who loved the first book are in for another treat," read the starred review of the S. & S. hc, LJ 11/1/14.]-Anna Mickelsen, Springfield City Lib., MA (c) Copyright 2015. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comesa baby that Don Tillman, lovable genius, has certainly not factored into his current life plan.The Aussie genetics professor who warmed hearts in The Rosie Project (2013) succeeded in snatching "The World's Most Beautiful Woman." But pragmatic Don thinks his situation might be too good to last forever. He's right. Enter Bud: Baby Under Development. After 10 blissful months of marriage, Rosie announces she's pregnant, uprooting the carefully balanced life they've created in New York. Complicating matters is a secret Don's keeping from Rosie: A lunch with friends turned disastrous when a new acquaintance, a social worker, diagnosed Don as unfit for fatherhood. This puts Don under a lot of stress, which he tries to combat by learning as much as he can about fetal development. He's as lovably frustrating as ever, handling this unexpected situation with utmost practicality. Rosie, though, is having none of it. She's Don's emotional opposite, dismissing Don's suggestions and turning fonder of the f-word by the minute. After creating such a successful offbeat relationship in his first book, author Simsion chooses to dismantle it, leaving the quirky lovebirds unable to communicate. Really, it's Rosie's fault. She's become entirely unlikable, failing to see that underneath Don's unconventional methods is a man who cares. Instead, she finds him "embarrassing," and it's heartbreaking. The impending failure of their relationship feels sudden, most likely due to the book's many side stories: Gene, Don's best friend, is in New York after the breakup of his marriage. George, a rock star who lives upstairs, has issues of his own, as does a fellow pregnant couple with financial troubles. While Don tries to solve all these problemsexercising his winning analytic voicehis marriage is fading into the background, as is readers' support of the Don-Rosie combo. Simsion tries to swiftly mend what's been broken, but the happily-ever-after is lacking confidence. Don prides himself on meticulous consideration of all scenarios; not even he could've imagined that the sparkle of his love story wouldn't last. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

The Rosie Effect one Orange juice was not scheduled for Fridays. Although Rosie and I had abandoned the Standardized Meal System, resulting in an improvement in "spontaneity" at the expense of shopping time, food inventory, and wastage, we had agreed that each week should include three alcohol-free days. Without formal scheduling, this target proved difficult to achieve, as I had predicted. Rosie eventually saw the logic of my solution. Fridays and Saturdays were obvious days on which to consume alcohol. Neither of us had classes on the weekend. We could sleep late and possibly have sex. Sex was absolutely not allowed to be scheduled, at least not by explicit discussion, but I had become familiar with the sequence of events likely to precipitate it: a blueberry muffin from Blue Sky Bakery, a triple shot of espresso from Otha's, removal of my shirt, and my impersonation of Gregory Peck in the role of Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird. I had learned not to do all four in the same sequence on every occasion, as my intention would then be obvious. To provide an element of unpredictability, I settled on tossing a coin twice to select a component of the routine to delete. I had placed a bottle of Elk Cove pinot gris in the refrigerator to accompany the divers' scallops purchased that morning at Chelsea Market, but when I returned after retrieving our laundry from the basement, there were two glasses of orange juice on the table. Orange juice was not compatible with the wine. Drinking it first would desensitize our taste buds to the slight residual sugar that was a feature of the pinot gris, thus creating an impression of sourness. Waiting until after we had finished the wine would also be unacceptable. Orange juice deteriorates rapidly--hence the emphasis placed by breakfast establishments on "freshly squeezed." Rosie was in the bedroom, so not immediately available for discussion. In our apartment, there were nine possible combinations of locations for two people, of which six involved us being in different rooms. In our ideal apartment, as jointly specified prior to our arrival in New York, there would have been thirty-six possible combinations, arising from the bedroom, two studies, two bathrooms, and a living-room-kitchen. This reference apartment would have been located in Manhattan, close to the 1 or A train for access to Columbia University medical school, with water views and a balcony or rooftop barbecue area. As our income consisted of one academic's salary, supplemented by two part-time cocktail-making jobs but reduced by Rosie's tuition fees, some compromise was required, and our apartment offered none of the specified features. We had given excessive weight to the Williamsburg location because our friends Isaac and Judy Esler lived there and had recommended it. There was no logical reason why a (then) forty-year-old professor of genetics and a thirty-year-old postgraduate medical student would be suited to the same neighborhood as a fifty-four-year-old psychiatrist and a fifty-two-year-old potter who had acquired their dwelling before prices escalated. The rent was high and the apartment had a number of faults that the management was reluctant to rectify. Currently the air-conditioning was failing to compensate for the exterior temperature of thirty-four degrees Celsius, which was within the expected range for Brooklyn in late June. The reduction in room numbers, combined with marriage, meant I had been thrown into closer sustained proximity with another human being than ever before. Rosie's physical presence was a hugely positive outcome of the Wife Project, but after ten months and ten days of marriage I was still adapting to being a component of a couple. I sometimes spent longer in the bathroom than was strictly necessary. I checked the date on my phone--definitely Friday, June 21. This was a better outcome than the scenario in which my brain had developed a fault that caused it to identify days incorrectly. But it confirmed a violation of the alcohol protocol. My reflections were interrupted by Rosie emerging from the bedroom wearing only a towel. This was my favorite costume, assuming "no costume" did not qualify as a costume. Once again, I was struck by her extraordinary beauty and inexplicable decision to select me as her partner. And, as always, that thought was followed by an unwanted emotion: an intense moment of fear that she would one day realize her error. "What's cooking?" she asked. "Nothing. Cooking has not commenced. I'm in the ingredient-assembly phase." She laughed, in the tone that indicated I had misinterpreted her question. Of course, the question would not have been required at all had the Standardized Meal System been in place. I provided the information that I guessed Rosie was seeking. "Sustainable scallops with a mirepoix of carrots, celeriac, shallots, and bell peppers and a sesame oil dressing. The recommended accompanying beverage is pinot gris." "Do you need me to do anything?" "We all need to get some sleep tonight. Tomorrow we go to Navarone." The content of the Gregory Peck line was irrelevant. The effect came entirely from the delivery and the impression it conveyed of leadership and confidence in the preparation of sautéed scallops. "And what if I can't sleep, Captain?" said Rosie. She smiled and disappeared into the bathroom. I did not raise the towel-location issue: I had long ago accepted that hers would be stored randomly in the bathroom or bedroom, effectively occupying two spaces. Our preferences for order are at different ends of the scale. When we moved from Australia to New York, Rosie packed three maximum-size suitcases. The quantity of clothes alone was incredible. My own personal items fitted into two carry-on bags. I took advantage of the move to upgrade my living equipment and gave my stereo and desktop computer to my brother, Trevor, returned the bed, linen, and kitchen utensils to the family home in Shepparton, and sold my bike. In contrast, Rosie added to her vast collection of possessions by purchasing decorative objects within weeks of our arrival. The result was evident in the chaotic condition of our apartment: potted plants, surplus chairs, and an impractical wine rack. It was not merely the quantity of items: there was also a problem of organization. The refrigerator was crowded with half-empty containers of bread toppings, dips, and decaying dairy products. Rosie had even suggested sourcing a second refrigerator from my friend Dave. One fridge each! Never had the advantages of the Standardized Meal System, with its fully specified meal for each day of the week, standard shopping list, and optimized inventory, been so obvious. There was exactly one exception to Rosie's disorganized approach. That exception was a variable. By default it was her medical studies, but currently it was her PhD thesis on environmental risks for the early onset of bipolar disorder. She had been granted advanced status in the Columbia MD program on the proviso that her thesis would be completed during the summer vacation. The deadline was now only two months and five days away. "How can you be so organized at one thing and so disorganized at everything else?" I'd asked Rosie, following her installation of the incorrect driver for her printer. "It's because I'm concentrating on my thesis, I don't worry about other stuff. Nobody asks if Freud checked the use-by date on the milk." "They didn't have use-by dates in the early twentieth century." It was incredible that two such dissimilar people had become a successful couple. Excerpted from The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.