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The Rosie Project (Don Tillman #1)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating Details  ·  234,473 Ratings  ·  26,410 Reviews
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
Hardcover, 298 pages
Published April 11th 2013 by Penguin (first published January 30th 2013)
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Life After Life by Kate AtkinsonThe Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil GaimanThe Rosie Project by Graeme SimsionAmericanah by Chimamanda Ngozi AdichieBurial Rites by Hannah Kent
Man Booker Prize Eligible 2013
3rd out of 176 books — 315 voters
The Fault in Our Stars by John GreenThe Book Thief by Markus ZusakGone Girl by Gillian FlynnDivergent by Veronica RothThe Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
52 Books In 52 Weeks - 2013
16th out of 169 books — 208 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dec 04, 2013 ALPHAreader rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
‘The Rosie Project’ by Graeme Simsion is so wonderful.
I’m going to attempt to enumerate my enjoyment of the novel;

1. Don Tillman is an Associate Professor of genetics at the University of Melbourne. He has a black-belt in Akikido, and can cook a mean lobster salad. He also has Asperger syndrome – but he doesn’t know that. Don just thinks that there’s something missing that leaves him baffled by human behaviour and unappealing to other people (especially the opposite sex). But after his dear ol
Oct 10, 2013 Tatiana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-lit, 2013
Sheldon in love.

Adorable and fun. Probably one of the most enjoyable chick lit books I've read, ironically, written by a man.

On the other hand, not nearly enough sex in it.

Jun 23, 2014 Richard rated it it was ok
This does for Autism what Pretty Woman did for prostitutes. It uses it for entertainment, it plays on it for laughter. It's a 1970's sitcom of a book.

The character of (Shel)Don feels like little more that fan-fiction of The Big Bang Theory and Rosie seems like the perfect emulation of The Cool Girl as described in Gone Girl. She's too trite and quirky to be believable. Don himself is simply a figure of fun, he moves form scene to scene for our amusement in a "what will he do now?" manner as Juli
Jul 17, 2014 Angela rated it liked it
What a shame!
What a shame Graeme Simsion wrote this offering "quickly" and that he went with a "comedy rather than a drama".
What a shame that the opportunity to educate and illuminate was squandered and traded for gratuitous laughs ,extreme generalisations and blatant stereotyping.
My initial delight at realising the subject matter of this book meant I was immediately enrolled in ' the project'. A third of the way into the book, I became uncomfortable with the tenor and theme. The premise that hi
Sam Quixote
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 10, 2013 Ruth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was very amusing and clever. The protagonist Don is definitely a clichéd version of someone with Asperger's, but I think he had to be for the purposes of the novel. He sits on the very end of the spectrum and embodies every single stereotypical attribute of an Aspie. At one point I cringed at the end of the book when he is struggling about whether he feels love or not. Not accurate for someone with Asperger's - they actually have intense emotions but are unable ...more
Aj the Ravenous Reader
Apr 24, 2016 Aj the Ravenous Reader rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Aj the Ravenous Reader by: Pinky
*Buddyread with my big sis, Rachel. Do check out her amazing review*

Greetings, everyone!

In the sum of the hours I perused the novel, I produced a successive vibration of the vocal cords intensified by full on display of teeth and facial contortions approximately 100 times. This is as the average human would say, completely hilarious!

This is the kind of printed work of fiction that allowed for so many opposites to attract; the sort of reading material that made technical and informal languages p
Paula Weston
Jan 30, 2013 Paula Weston rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: australian
How addictive was this book? I read it in a day - a day when I should have been doing other things.

It's a fun, quirky and erudite love story. It's laugh-out-loud funny and unexpectedly touching.

Don is a wonderfully offbeat narrative character and Rosie is his perfect foil. Graeme Simsion writes both characters pitch perfect.

I think one of the reasons the story is so appealing is that it's written by a man, from a man's perspective. And it's definitely not lad lit.

This book is going to be a huge
Charmaine Clancy
Read this over two very busy days. I fell in love with Don, the protagonist. I loved the ways he measured and evaluated life. I want to embrace his rigid meal plan and have lobster in my bathtub every Tuesday night.
Although Don is a highly esteemed genetics scientist, he views life with a beautiful naivety, he knows the workings and technicalities of people, but just can't grasp that element that makes us chaotic, individual works of art.
And I laughed! Yep, I finally came to understand the inte
Whitney Atkinson
This book started out really great. For the first 100 pages I was entertained and even got a kick out of the quirky narration. Then I sat back and thought about who I was reading into the mind of. Don is a sort of disturbed man. I was very uncomfortable throughout the last half of this book because he needed serious help dealing with the world that he wasn't receiving. Rather, people-- his friends-- would watch his actions and laugh. Don was such an unreliable narrator and what was an attempt at ...more
B the BookAddict
Sep 11, 2014 B the BookAddict rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to B the BookAddict by: GR
Shelves: autumn-challenge

My first note written about this novel is a 1 intolerably woeful but a night's sleep has made me feel a little more generous so I've amended it to 2it was ok. The whole premise felt predictable, horribly predictable, I found that main character incredibly annoying and the humor did not amuse me. I know I am swimming against the tide of most readers, especially my GR friends but it was just all very ho-hum for me. Sorry, folks. 2
Aug 31, 2014 Librariasaurus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This book made me laugh. Not many books can do that. This was a truly delightful book to read and I would never ask for a minute of the time spent reading it back.
Made all the more amazing by the fact that it is the first novel of Melbourne writer Graeme Simsion, The Rosie Project will rank highly amongst my 2013 reads.
Written from a unique perspective, this is one of the few, if not the only, romantic comedies with a male protagonist. And not only male, but autistic.
Don Tillman is a brillian
♡Karlyn P♡

4.5 'Nerds Need Love Too' stars.

This wasn't a traditional romance novel, but I enjoyed the romantic aspect of this story quite a bit. There was also a fun and interesting journey with Don and Rosie gathering dozens of samples of DNA to determine who might be Rosie's biological father. It made me laugh quite a few times!

The hero, Don Tillman, is a 39 y/o socially inept scientist who lives his life based on strict rules. He never believed that love, romance and marriage was for him. But when a f
Oct 20, 2013 Eve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, read-2013
I enjoyed every single minute of this book! I knew it'd be a favorite because I've lived it! There is a "Don" in my life, and I was very clearly put on the "unsuitable" list, but we've remained good friends. It's hard not to love these sort of characters (real or fictitious).

I wager that this will be a film in the not too distant future. Even though it's an Australian book, I can't help but peg Lizzy Caplan as Rosie.

*sigh* Just need a few more minutes to let it all sink in...
Don Tillman is an absolute hoot! I loved his odd, technical way of speaking. Don is a professor of genetics and he's looking for someone to share his life with. He's socially-awkward, lonely, and over- analytical to a fault. He's pushing 40 and he's had a difficult time in the romance department. One day, he decides to start a project - which he hilariously calls, "The Wife Project". It's basically a detailed, yet rambling questionnaire of the requirements/preferences he's searching for in a lon ...more
Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ (of badger and SNAKE)
Jun 13, 2015 Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ (of badger and SNAKE) rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘ (of badger and SNAKE) by: Melwasul

Actual rating : 3.5 stars

From the moment I finished it I knew I had one critical task to perform : To review this project book.

Although the timing is particularly annoying, I realized that the several options I faced made my choice incredibly clear.

Not reviewing this book, resulting in damage to this book's fame, which would be appalling due to the fact that it's fucking awesome.

Rescheduling this review to another time, resulting in loss of memories and leading to a probable abandonment of
Darth J
An unconventional take on the Rom-Com genre, but with the same tropes.

Here we have Don Tillman (view spoiler), a genetics researcher who has his life organized to the last minute and finally decides to take a wife. In order to do so, he creates a questionnaire in order to filter out all unsuitable women. (Why he doesn’t
Nov 18, 2015 Diane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was completely charmed by this novel. Sure, it's basically Sheldon Cooper Tries to Find a Wife, but I liked it.

Don Tillman is a genetics professor in his late 30s who sets out to find a spouse by devising an elaborate questionnaire. Don is very fussy and regimented in his life, and allusions are made to him having Asperger's. Don thinks he can weed out any unsuitable partners and find someone well-matched for him. Meanwhile, he bumps into a woman named Rosie, who Don agrees is totally unsuitab
May 24, 2016 Maureen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I actually ended up enjoying this book much more than I originally thought I would.
At the forefront it seems extremely sexist and not that great plot-wise, but it definitely addresses those issues and works through them with character development, which I found to be fantastic.
The only thing I'm not sure on is the depiction of Asperger's. I am not an expert in any way, so I'm not sure if this portrayal was accurate/correct/well done. If someone wants to tell me that would be awesome!
Overall enj
Sep 21, 2014 Rowena rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Rowena by: Eve
Shelves: humour
4.5 stars

I went through a fluffy novel/chick lit phase during my late teens and early twenties and vowed I would never pick up such a book again. However, this book came highly recommended so I decided to give it a go.

I was pleasantly surprised by this book. Don Tillman is a socially inept university professor, with very few friends and an extremely rigid lifestyle. He has designed a questionnaire, "The Wife Project", to find himself a wife. Unfortunately his standards are incredibly high. Howev
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

a/k/a “Sheldon Cooper Finds a Wife”

Don is a creature of habit. His work, exercise, dinner, clothes, well …. EVERYTHING is scheduled to the second with zero variation. The only time Don has really ventured out of his comfort zone was when he befriended Daphne – a lonely elderly neighbor whose husband had been put in a nursing home. Before Daphne’s own health declines, she proclaims what a wonderful husband Don will be to some lucky gir
This was a great read, really engaging, the characters were sweet and quirky, the main character is a good guy with various issues, he was so real though and was happy to be himself. I found myself really gunning for him! Rosie sweeps into his life which places him into a bit of a spin, life is about to change, and it's a fun ride whilst this happens. She was great too, just like in real life it's nice to meet people who buck the trend and don't have to be like 'everybody else'. I recommend this ...more
Jul 24, 2014 Dem rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Rosie project was a book I picked out on a whim while browsing through audible, as I wanted something light to listen to while running.
The book has excellent reviews and is described as " Genuinely funny, you will laugh out loud"
Unfortunately I didn't find the book funny and I didn't laugh out loud hence the the reason for my 2 star rating,

The novel has excellent reviews and many of my friends have loved it. I found it quite predictable in places and I didn't fall in love with the characte
Don Tillman is a professor of genetics who is a man of routine, order, and organisation. He doesn't like people who are late, who smoke or drink too much. At the age of thirty nine he decides it's time to find a wife which begins the Wife Project. For this project he puts together a comprehensive and lengthy questionnaire in the hope of finding a perfect mate for life.

When Gene which is Don's best friend sends Rosie Jarman to his office he thinks she is there for the Wife Project. He soon realis
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
As far as my local book club selections go, this was a good one. Parts of this book were very charming. I loved the idea of this book and the very thorough execution. It was a cute, light read and quirkier than most chick lit books.

However, I had a few issues with it that prevented it from being 4 stars. Parts of the story dragged, especially in the middle. I thought that the concept of the "father project" and "wife project" got tired and the outcome was wholly predictable. I also wanted to ki
♥ Jx PinkLady Reviews ♥

Don Tillman is looking for a wife and, in his ordered and methodical world, believes the most effective way is to use a questionnaire. He believes this will find his ideal match. His thought process is unique to him and perfectly reasonable in his mind which is the aspect I most enjoyed about the writing and one that shines through the text in an interesting and entertaining manner. There are a couple of moments pertaining to this where I literally laughed out loud. Don Tillman is a great, engag
Nov 29, 2014 Margitte rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is another book I acquired based on you dear and wonderful Goodreads friends' reviews of it. My literary exploration has become a mind and soul-enriching adventure since joining GR. I have you all to thank for it.

What a complex, intricate, profound and entertaining read! Adventure and laughter; enlightenment and emotional exploration.

A professor in genetics approaches everything in life as a well- prepared project, for which he opens an official file. He lives his life by his own strictly-
Sep 24, 2013 Erin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reality
The Rosie Project was good, but it could have been so much better. Like most three star books I don't have too much to say. I didn't like that Don's narration constantly reminded me of Sheldon from Big Bang Theory. Yes they both have Asperger's (although that is never explicitly stated in either case), but that does not mean that they ere the exact same person with the exact same voice. I was excited to spend time with a main character that had Asperger's because, in general, people with Asperge ...more
Rosie it's not you ... it's me. I just couldn't get into this book. A book club choice. I think there are only positive reviews on Goodreads and anyone I mentioned I was reading this book said to me "I loved that book" .... so I kept going back to it .... but I just couldn't do it. I struggle to read a book that people tell you ... oh you just have to stick with it. Nope. Just couldn't do it. To me, it read like the author already had the movie planned. Like I said though, I think it's definitel ...more
Julian Lees
Apr 09, 2015 Julian Lees rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely loved it!
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Graeme Simsion is a former IT consultant and the author of two nonfiction books on database design who decided, at the age of fifty, to turn his hand to fiction. His first novel, The Rosie Project, was published in 2013 and translation rights have been sold in over thirty-five languages. Graeme lives in Australia with his wife, Anne, and their two children.
More about Graeme Simsion...

Other Books in the Series

Don Tillman (2 books)
  • The Rosie Effect (Don Tillman, #2)

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“I asked you here tonight because when you realise you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.” 261 likes
“But why, why, why can't people just say what they mean?” 255 likes
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