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The Rosie Project

Don Tillman, Book 1
Narrated by: Dan O'Grady
Series: Don Tillman, Book 1
Length: 7 hrs and 30 mins
4.6 out of 5 stars (4,134 ratings)

Non-member price: $29.95

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Publisher's Summary

The art of love is never a science.: Meet Don Tillman, a brilliant yet socially inept professor of genetics, who’s decided it’s time he found a wife. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which Don approaches all things, he designs The Wife Project to find his perfect partner: a 16-page, scientifically valid survey to filter out the drinkers, the smokers, the late arrivers. Yet, Rosie Jarman possesses all these qualities. Although Don easily disqualifies her as a suitable candidate (even if she is "quite intelligent for a barmaid"), he is intrigued by Rosie's own quest to identify her biological father. When an unlikely relationship develops as they collaborate on The Father Project, Don is forced to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie and the realisation that, despite your best scientific efforts, you don’t find love, it finds you.

©2013 Graeme Simsion (P)2014 Audible Studios

What listeners say about The Rosie Project

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great read

An excellent book that was well read. I did not know what to expect from this book but I found it funny, fast paced and although the plot was a bit predictable I would recommend it to male or female readers, especially those who are just a little bit on the spectrum!

11 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Finally, more representation for people with ASDs.

People with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) don't get fair representation in creative media. We're either stone cold (Bones), over the top (Rain Man), intellectually unreachable (The Good Doctor), or just straight up nutty (Lilo from Lilo and Stitch), with shades of grey in between. Don't even get me started on how Vaxxed presented us... This book goes a long way towards righting those wrongs. By putting you in the shoes of a man (possibly) with Asperger's Syndrome, you see the world from his strictly regimented, data driven, black and white view, a view coloured in by his experiences with his female protagonist. You don't just see him in his world, you see how his world changes around him and those he cares about, and how he responds to those changes, good and bad. I'll admit, I see a lot of myself in Don Tillman. Like him, I was born before Hans Asperger published his research and expanded the definition of autism. I was tested at the age of two and they had nothing with which to diagnose me, and the definitions they had led them down wrong paths, thankfully not destructively in Don's case. I'm not as severely regimented as he is (remember, folks, it's a spectrum) though quite so, and while experience has made me better in social situations, my lack of social instinct does catch me short from time to time. I obsess like a champion and, like Don, once I've got an idea in my head I pursue it inversely proportional to the sense it makes to those around me. If you have loved ones (or even acquaintances) in your life on the spectrum, and you want to truly understand what's going on inside their head, read this book. It will tell you so much in ways we tend to struggle to articulate. If I could give it more than five stars, I would.

6 people found this helpful

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Terrific novel

I have both read and listened to this story ..... I enjoyed it so much! It is by far the best book I have read in a long time. I couldn't put it down! I have read the sequel and am now ready to listen to it too. Having a few male relatives with similar degrees of autism I found it fascinating and liberating. This book gave new insights and is written with brilliant humour that even my clever autistic husband found it amusing!

11 people found this helpful

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Wonderfully engaging

Wonderful characters all round with a beautifully self aware protagonist. There are moments your heart breaks for Don alongside other times you realise his assessment of people and situations is hilariously spot on. A wonderfully realised character.

10 people found this helpful

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Heteronormative, elitist fantasy fiction

Despite a commendable sense of comic timing that elicited a number of genuine laughs, this book fails to depict the experience of the majority of people with autism. Too many subsist below the poverty line, spending their lives either unemployed, underemployed, or in menial jobs, regardless of intelligence or motivation. People with autism frequently have difficulty with physical coordination, and can be female, transgendered, coloured, of below-average intellect, as well as male and white. In seeking, admirably, to humanise and legitimise those with autism for a neurotypical audience, the author presents an idealised version of the condition that ultimately eliminates most of the "problem" areas that lead those with autism to be undervalued. The straight, (awkwardly) masculine protagonist possesses remarkable physically dexterity and agility, being able to scale brick walls and execute precision martial arts moves. He's upwardly mobile, widely respected academically, and has his pick of lucrative international career choices. The list of "corrected" autistic "defects" goes on and on. Alright, a version of this individual probably exists. But please, don't build a hero for the mainstream by presenting someone who ticks all of the boxes for "extraordinary" minus some fluency in social cues. Value is not synonymous with success. A more powerful story would have presented the range of challenges actually faced by people with autism, and would have made an unapologetic powerhouse from them, poverty, sexuality, lack of formal education and all. "The Rosie Project" is a funny, heartwarming apology for the reality of those undervalued by a system that rewards whiteness, straightness, maleness, physical robustness, and exceptional educational and economic achievement, to the exclusion of those with lifelong challenges for whom such outcomes are unattainable. To those with autism out there who aren't "extraordinary" in any way other than the fact of being who they are: You are heroes just for getting by daily in a society that prizes a narrow set of characteristics you may or may not ever possess. You don't have to transform yourself into a Don Tillman or a Lisbeth Salander. Let's hope the next bestselling protagonist with autism, just like so many understated fictional neurotypical characters, is celebrated for their flawed human ordinariness. People can be moved without being inspired.

2 people found this helpful

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Interesting perspective

Liked this book...mostly due to the main charactors mental disposition and the educational opportunity ( although light ) it gave me into the life of people with Aspergers.

It was mostly curiosity that kept me engaged in this book rather than a rich story line.

I thought the narration was of high quality and would recommend this book to people's who a) want a male perspective on relationships, b) like a light humoured read and c) are curious about the vastly amazing mental spectrum of humanity.

2 people found this helpful

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Very enjoyable.

The Rosie Project is lovely light hearted and funny story of a man wisth undiagnosed ASD falling in love. I really enjoyed listening to the story and loved the Narrator's Australian accent.

8 people found this helpful

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Simply could not stop listening.

Absolutely brilliant It was such an engaging story that I couldn't put it down.
The best novel I can remember reading.

4 people found this helpful

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Found it hard to finish

The performance itself was good, but the story itself was boring. I guess it just wasn't my kind of story.

1 person found this helpful

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Quirky and entertaining

I rather liked this book, surprisingly free of charge, but definitely worth the effort. Dan O'Grady gave effective credibility to the characters particularly the central one - a scientist on the autistic spectrum - with a rather charming view of love and what are his and others emotions. Quite a short book with more than a hint of irony - both highly entertaining and likeable. I could look further to this author and narrator. Definitely worth the effort.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tommo&Liz
  • 28-10-2019

Australian Comedy

This book is a fun romp through the mind and romantic difficulties of Tillman (genetics professor with ASD). Along the way he learns to make cocktails, be flexible and find love. It is heartwarming, laugh out loud fun in a similar vein to Nick Earls or 'Big Bang Theory'. Definitely worth the credit.

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  • Sarah
  • 04-09-2019

Brilliant

I thoroughly enjoyed this story and found it utterly compelling. I'd highly recommended for anyone.

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  • R W
  • 27-02-2019

A bit disappointed

In the first half of the book, lead character Don is portrayed in a childlike way that feels patronising. As Don becomes more self-aware, the characterisation takes on more depth and becomes an easier read. It’s very entertaining in parts, and I expect the 2nd and 3rd in the series to be more interesting than the first, as Don’s life becomes more complex.

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  • Michael Stringer
  • 15-06-2015

Hilarious romance with a rational approach

After 5 minutes listening and a moment of so much laughter that I had to stop the book, I knew that the Rosie Project is a winner. As a person diagnosed as borderline Asperger's Syndrome (actual BMI 23), I quickly empathised with the difficulties that Assoc. Prof. Don Tilman has had through his life.

As the story of a man whose brain works so differently to almost all others, and his long life journey to find his place in the world, including a romantic partner, the book works well. I liked the way the book gently stood up for people who do not conform to the neuro-typical, but did this within the context of a delightfully funny love story. Yes - aspys rule!

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  • Dantheman
  • 08-05-2015

Brilliant!

An education, and a great yarn.

I fell in love with Rosie too, found my self yelling at Don.

Crazy.

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  • maledr5
  • 23-02-2015

Entertain, fun and romantic

Is such an unusual love story. And yet so real. I think in some way we all are Don Tillman. Awesome to read.

Excellent performance.