The Best-Laid Plans

If Sheldon Cooper of The Big Bang Theory were to write a novel, the narrative voice in it would sound an awful lot like the narrative voice we hear in Graeme Simsion’s very funny romance, The Rosie Project.

Don Tillman, the obsessive-compulsive professor of genetics in search of a wife, does indeed sound like the annoying yet loveable Sheldon, but unlike Sheldon, he has at least some self-awareness and sensitivity to others, just not as much of those qualities as we would find in. . .well, everybody else.

The excruciatingly-detailed compatibility questionnaire he dreams up is designed to weed out exactly the kind of person Rosie Jarman is, except for two problems:  Don doesn’t want to weed her out; he just doesn’t know it; and, two, Rosie is not your typical girlfriend / wife-in-waiting.  She has the eerie, unsettling patience of that little boy who just won’t go away in the movie, Bad Santa, but a much, much sharper brain to go with it.

Parts of the book will make you laugh out loud (for example, Don defending himself against security in a restaurant), and all of it will make you smile.  It’s yet another book that shows us we cannot manufacture love.  The best we can do is try to be the kind of men and women who will allow love to draw near.

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