Addition
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Addition

3.54 of 5 stars 3.54  ·  rating details  ·  2,138 ratings  ·  477 reviews
Everything counts...

Grace Lisa Vandenburg orders her world with numbers: how many bananas she buys, how many steps she takes to the café, where she chooses to sit, how many poppy seeds are in her daily piece of orange cake. Every morning she uses 100 strokes to brush her hair, 160 strokes to brush her teeth. She remembers the day she started to count, how she used numbers...more
Paperback, 243 pages
Published 2008 by Sceptre
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Jeff
When I first started reading "Addition" I was addicted to Toni Jordan's intelligent, quirky writing. Given the amount of times I laughed out loud, I was convinced this was going to be a five-star book; then, I got into the "meat" of the story and all my high hopes floundered.

"Addition" starts out strong as Grace, a young woman with OCD, expounds on life, love, counting, and Nikola Tesla. Grace's obsessive-compulsive voice is constructed with such delightful abandon that I was ... well, I was ch...more
Michael
Grace Lisa Vandenburg is obsessed with numbers; she counts everything. Her whole life is centred around numbers; how many banana’s to buy, how many bits of an orange cake to take, how many brushes to take for her hair or even teeth. Everything was organised but then something went wrong and now she survives on disability checks and tutoring. Here only real connection in the world was a portrait of Nikola Tesla; that is until she met Seamus Joseph O’Reilly who changed everything.

Addition is a qui...more
Rachel
Read this over the weekend for a book club. It's our lightest pick, yet. Entertaining and funny but with enough conflict for good conversation.
Marilyn
Addition is a funny, charming book about a woman who counts compulsively, and counts everything. It's the way she feels safe in the world. Every day she goes to the same cafe to have a hot chocolate with two marshmallows and a slice of orange cake. The cake's frosting is dusted with poppy seeds, and she counts the number of seeds each day, which tells her how many bites she has to take to eat the cake. She counts the bristles on her toothbrush. She counts her steps. She buys bananas in multiples...more
Laura
I received this book as a GoodReads "first reads" giveaway item. I was excited to see that I'd won a copy, as it was one of the most interesting-sounding books in the contest when I signed up. I finished the entire things in one afternoon, tucked under a blanket on the couch while recovering from a bit of a cold.

The book feels a bit like chicklit for brain fans. As a neuroscience student, I found the characterization of Grace, her obsessive-compulsive illness, and her experiences with medication...more
Paula Weston
I've been meaning to read this book since it came out in 2008 and it was definitely worth the wait. This offbeat story about love and acceptance is funny, heartwarming, heartbreaking and completely addictive.

Toni Jordan tackles the issue of OCD with wit, insight and sensitivity (along a healthy dose of irreverence). And while there's a lovely romance at its core, Addition is really about Grace and her need to forgive herself, and her need for those she cares about to love her for who she is - no...more
Megan
Not sure if this should get 3 or 4 stars. I'll err on the generous side...

For the most part, I enjoyed this. It's a light and funny novel, but due to the OCD given to the protagonist, it has its dark moments.

I can totally sympathize with people who have OCD since I have a few compulsive behaviors myself. Reading this book, I really felt as though I could get into the main character's head, and felt what she felt. At times, though, her character didn't seem to ring true; she was just a little too...more
Tattered Cover Book Store
I loved this light hearted, quirky story, and in fact nearly swallowed it whole on a lazy, cloudy Saturday. This is a story about Grace, who lives with a form of
obsessive/compulsive disorder that demands that she count EVERYTHING and live by the rule of numbers. This can be rather demanding, as you can probably guess. But she is absolutely adorable, with an acerbic wit that made me giggle many, many times. This book is all about learning to embrace,and even flaunt, who you are, no matter what. I...more
Beth
An australian woman with OCD meets a man when she steals his banana at the supermarket because she needs 10 to feed the demon of her disorder. Romance ensues, and though takes her OCD well into stride, her happiness inspires her to try therapy again, which means drugs, which means no more OCD and a major personality change.

The story is charming and entertaining, but contains a great deal of depth as well, and goes somewhere a little dark at the end, which balances out the lightness well. There i...more
Ailsa
Jun 28, 2014 Ailsa rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: chick lit fans, people looking for something mindless, beach readers
Shelves: fiction, light-read
I think I wanted to like this book more than I actually did. There wasn't very much wrong with it, once one accepts that it really is just a chick lit book and not anything more serious. I think my problem with this book stemmed from my going into it with higher expectations than it merited - the idea of a OCD protagnist sounded really interesting (and in fairness, was, for a bit) but the story wasn't sustained enough for me. Brainless holiday read and nothing more.
Jeruen
I took a little break from my post-modern literature streak. And for that, I picked up this novel, entitled Addition by Toni Jordan.

So what is this about?

This is about the story, more specifically, a love story of a female, someone who has obsessive-compulsive disorder, and her struggled against counting. Yes, her symptoms of her OCD manifests as her compulsion to count everything, every single facet of her life. Of course, that has certain consequences, such as her resulting in an inability to...more
Marg

Grace Lisa Vandenburg counts....everything. Her life is very precisely ordered. She gets out of her single bed at the exact same time of the morning everyday, she always goes to the same cafe, and she always orders the same cake (orange poppyseed) which she always cuts into precisely the same number of pieces. She always buys exactly the same number of chicken breasts, potatoes, bananas when she does her food shopping. She always counts her steps, she has been known to count the number of alfalf...more
Emma
I really loved this book. I loved the writing, Grace and her counting, Seamus and his stolen banana. And that it was subtly set in Melbourne: tram tracks, Glenferrie Rd, 6 points for a goal, and the immorality of taking a bath. I haven’t read anything by an Australian author for a while so it was kind like coming home.

But mostly this is just a sweet, unique love story that I would recommend to anyone.
Anna
This is a unique book for sure. It is simultaneously laugh out loud funny and depressingly dark. Jordan does a commendable job of taking the reader inside the mind of OCD. She shows us the confusion, fear, denial, anxiety and all the complexities of the disorder while at once keeping the story humorous and uplifting. This is one of those books where you feel like you are right there in the mind of the character, experiencing everything she is experiencing. As such, there were times I wanted to l...more
Ute
Maybe it's not fair of me to review this book because I did not finish it, but I don't finish books I don't like. And this book made me mad. Basically we have a talented writer who has decided to write chick lit although they don't write chick lit well, they write other lit well. I came across some sentences that I loved, some sentences that showed me that the editor of this book should have hit the author around the ears with the badly done chick lit and demanded bravery and a new start. It was...more
Nadine
Grace hat ein Problem: Zahlen. Sie ist bessessen davon, ihre Umwelt unter Kontrolle zu bekommen, indem sie alles zählt, was ihr begegnet. Buchstaben in Namen, Streusel auf Kuchen, Schritte bis zum Supermarkt...
Selbst alltägliche Dinge wie Einkaufen werden zur Herausforderung, wenn Eier in 12-er Packungen angeboten werden (das Buch spielt in Melbourne) und 10 doch eine wesentlich schönere Zahl ist und man an der KAsse feststellt, dass man nur 9 Bananen statt der obligatorischen 10 gekauft hat, gl...more
Amber
Do you count things? Unconsciously (perhaps) number the stairs you're walking up, or the amount of ravioli on your plate? We all count and measure things to a certain extent: 30 even minutes on the exercise bike, 2 cups of flour in this bread recipe, a 72" x 80" space for an entertainment center... For Grace, absolutely EVERYTHING must be counted, numbered and organized. In groups of 10: 30 books per shelf, 10 almonds for a snack, and the number of poppy seeds on her daily coffee at the cafe det...more
Jan
Aug 31, 2009 Jan rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: fiction
I've been trying to figure out how I was going to rate/review this book ever since I finished it last Friday. At one point, I was considering giving it 2 stars, but it had a good ending, so then I was going to give it 4. As you can see, I finally settled on 3 stars.

Addition is the story of a woman obsessed with numbers and counting. The obsession began after a traumatic childhood event, but our protagonist, Grace, managed to keep it in check until another traumatic incident many years later brou...more
Carin
I used to love chick lit novels. Then about 10 years ago I got a little tired of them. I narrowed the kinds of chick lit novels that I like a lot: our protagonist is not in her early 20s, doesn't have a bunch of roommates, doesn't have a job in the media with a terrible boss, doesn't have a cute and funny male friend who she doesn't think of "that way" (yet), and does have real problems. Preferably also isn't set in New York or London.

I am happy to report that Addition is a chick lit book that...more
Anita
Sep 07, 2009 Anita rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: stephanie.hoge@gmail.com
DEE-LIGHT-FUL. I thought this book was awesome! I enjoyed the storyline and the characters. totally great new author. I like the way the character faced her mental illness, with humor and laughter and did what was best for her. I enjoyed the character's sarcastic humor and insightful comments, like these below:

"football? please. why do people care? and 6 points for one goal? that's just plain annoying. why does their team, an arbitrary, illogical grouping at best, inspire this kind of boneheade...more
Emilie Rosson
Toni Jordan's Addition is a fantastic little book that combines fluid prose with an addictive story and thematic content that makes you question your presumptions about mental illness, all bound up in a story that successfully toes the line between personal drama and modern (I hate to say chick-lit, but I'm not sure what other term applies) romance.

Grace is clever, funny, flirty and independent, but she's also jobless, living on disability, and pretty lonely. Grace can't stop counting things. I...more
Dee-Ann
Really enjoyed this book. It was quirky, filled with bits of information that may come in useful for quiz nights or trivial pursuit and gave me things to think about, including the number of other noses the air that I breathe has been through, and the cause of the movie Ghost Rider. All this makes sense in the context of the story.

I really liked that character of Grace, including with her quirks, which sounds not too different to autistic traits, and find her character quite believable. I apprec...more
Camille
This book is absolutely amazing. Stunning. Wonderful. Touching. GREAT. I've never read anything quite like it.

The story revolves around Grace, a 35 year old, single, involuntary ex-teacher and homebody whose love interest is a picture of a dead-long-ago inventor named Nikola and who likes to know her dimensions a little too much. Well, a LOT too much. A tragedy from her childhood has had her make everything in her life COUNT,literally. She can't stop counting!
Counting becomes a sickness she does...more
Rachael Hewison
I had been recommended this book by a fellow goodreads book lover and I owe them a massive thanks, this was a gem of a novel turning a serious subject into something more light hearted whilst still allowing us to understand what having OCD is like.
The characters are the central pillar around which the novel was formed and I loved them. Grace has to be one of the most loveable (if sometimes frustrating) characters I have ever read. Toni Jordan allowing us to glimpse what frustrations life with O...more
Jeanne
A girl after my own heart. Okay, maybe not, but an OCD story always gets to me. Told in a first person perspective (necessary to get into her head), we watch as Grace tries to find a way to live her life after her obsession with numbers goes awry.

She meets a guy who's willing to understand her quirks and she tries to change, for him and for herself, but finds she doesn't like the person she becomes. Interesting look at where to draw the line with mental illness/treatment and personality.

Grace i...more
LindyLouMac
http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/6...

Another review I read referred to this book as quirky which I think is a good description. It is a strangely disturbing but at the same time humorous read. It is certainly a novel with a very unusual theme.

Grace Lisa Vandenburg counts due to the fact that she suffers from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. This is a far from easy condition to live with and not an easy subject to write about in a humorous manner. Somehow Toni Jordan has succeeded and although I...more
Katie
May 23, 2010 Katie rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Math Geeks like me!
Shelves: 2010books
I really enjoyed this book with its math history facts tucked away nonchalantly into its fictional story of Grace Lisa Vandenburg, a 19 (not age), is traumatized as a youth and begins to count...literally everything. When she is about 33, this psychological disorder disrupts her life into making everything in to tens. Along comes Seamus Joseph O'Reilly, also a 19 (how perfect!), who seems undeterred by her inability to stop counting. He patiently sticks by her side and helps her adjust to where...more
Nette
A pleasant, well-written novel about a woman with a form of OCD that requires her to count everything, right down to the number of alfalfa sprouts in her salad. Unfortunately, I tend to have the wrong reaction to these stories. I'm not so much sympathetic as interested in signing up. I came away thinking that obsessive counting seems like safe and healthy stress reliever, and that maybe I should look into it. (I also watch episodes of "Intervention" and think, "Gosh, a 64-ounce cherry Slurpee ha...more
Arabella
I really like what Toni Jordan has done in this novel and I found Grace to be a fascinating character but it also left me feeling a little uncomfortable, especially those sections where Grace is trying to overcome her challenges with OCD and conform more to what she thinks people want. I did like the way this novel ended, it felt right and I felt that Grace was more empowered by her choices than if this novel had pursued a more conventional ending. I loved all the snippets about Tesla and Grace'...more
Rhosyn
May contain Spoilers

Rating: 2.5/5 Stars.

This book started well. The characterisation was good, and Grace was unique, unlike any character I'd read before, mainly due to her counting 'problem'. I liked her humour and her obsessive nature, particularly with Nikola Tesla.

About 80 pages in, it all changes. As she goes for her daily hot chocolate with 2 marshmallows and orange cake with poppy seeds, she sees in the cafe there is no spare table. Instead she is willing to sit next to a man she stole a...more
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Toni was born in Brisbane in 1966. She loved reading and writing at primary school (Seven Hills State School) but by high school (Lourdes Hill College) had become a science nerd. After leaving school, she enrolled in a Bachelor of Science at the University of Queensland, which she completed part time after almost failing due to a preoccupation with chasing boys.

She has worked as a research assista...more
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“Most people miss their whole lives, you know. Listen, life isn't when you are standing on top of a mountain looking at a sunset. Life isn't waiting at the alter or the moment your child is born or that time you were swimming in a deep water and a dolphin came up alongside you. These are fragments. 10 or 12 grains of sand spread throughout your entire existence. These are not life. Life is brushing your teeth or making a sandwich or watching the news or waiting for the bus. Or walking. Every day, thousands of tiny events happen and if you're not watching, if you're not careful, if you don't capture them and make them COUNT, your could miss it. You could miss your whole life.” 57 likes
“Don't tell anyone at the church this, but I think girls going out with girls is quite sensible. Imagine not having to do all the housework, and if you found a nice girl the same size you'd have double the wardrobe and you'd never have to shave your legs or clean whiskers out of the sink. I don't know why everyone doesn't do it. Not it's fine, provided you stay that way. It's the changing back to men that sends you mad.” 31 likes
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