“I am thirty-nine years old; single, intelligent, fit, in excellent health and I have a relatively high status and above-average income as an associate professor. Logically, I should be attractive to a wide range of women. In the animal kingdom, I would succeed in reproducing."
At least this is the logic of Don Tillman an oddly charming, yet social inept professor of genetics, with habit of striking out before the second date. An chance conversation with his neighbour (one of his very few friends, he can count the amount on one hand) leads him into a revelation to find a partner. And so he embarks on The Wife Project. A dizzy-ing 16 page questionnaire designed to find the perfect match. In Don's mind this partner is perfectly punctual, non-drinking/smoking woman who will slot into his impeccably timed and unmoving set schedule. The plan seems perfect for Don's analytical mind and he's sure that he'll find someone who'll fit the rigid criteria.
Rosie ticks off none of the boxes. but sweeps into Don's University office proposing another project for him to take on - help her search for her own biological father. As genetics is his field of expertise, he takes up the challenge, completely unaware that Rosie will not only push him out of his tightly wound comfort zone over and over again, but lead him into a life with skewed time-scales, cocktail-making and 'going with the flow'.
So what was my verdict?
Warning! Do not be fooled by the seemingly fluffy romantic premise of this book, it's far more than just a rom-com novel about geek meets girl.
Starting with Don himself. A man who came to the conclusion a long time ago that he was different from everyone else and was completely fine with it. As the narrator of the story, the audience gets a glimpse into his mind, which in itself is a fascinating, fast paced and highly analytical place. It become obvious only a couple of pages into the book that his apparent OCD, social inadequacies and focused mind are possibly attributes to someone on the autistic spectrum. Not that this condition defines Don as a person, he himself perceives himself not to be autistic, just a logical thinker - and I gotta admit is logic really does make sense at times.
Rosie is no stereotypical female protagonist either. She's incredible smart - as a Psychology PHD student - vivacious, opinionated and swears like a sailor. Despite the book being told from Don's perspective, Rosie is portrayed as an incredibly complex character, who is happy to accept Don for who he is.
Spattered around the book are other brilliantly written characters such as Don's randy best friend Gene, Gene's obscenely patient wife Claudia, and others the two meet on their journey. There's no doubt this book will be the compared to The Big Bang Theory, with Don's personality being very similar to Sheldon's. The dialogue it witty, the character development of every character is also well written, not to mention the heartfelt ending and message that there's someone out there for everyone...no matter how 'odd' you are.
This book is set for release on April 11th.
For lovers of...The Big Bang Theory, Forest Gump, An Abundance of Katherines; Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist
This review was written by regular reviewer Ria, get to know her here.
*c/o Penguin Books & GoodReads: Although I recieved a copy of this book free of charge this has not influenced my opinion and my review, as always, is 100% honest