Like just about everyone else I know, I was eagerly awaiting Graeme Simsion‘s follow up to The Rosie Project (review). I approached The Rosie Effect cautiously, knowing that there was no way it could be as good as The Rosie Project. When The Rosie Project came out Don Tillman was such a breath of fresh air, but with The Rosie Effect he becomes a caricature of himself.
True, there were one or two scenes in which the old Don Tillman exerted himself – notably the Bluefin Tuna scene at the restaurant – but for the most part the book just wasn’t funny. To borrow a term from television, it would seem that Simsion ‘jumped the shark’ with The Rosie Effect.
And like in so many sitcoms, a pregnancy marks the beginning of the end. Think Mad About You, or Friends. In The Rosie Effect Don and Rosie find themselves with child, living in New York, with Gene (implausible, I know, but true). I suppose Don’s inability to respond in a natural manner to the prospect of becoming a father would be funny if it wasn’t such trod upon material. Simsion offers up very little that is new or different or even particularly Don-like. Stereotypes and misunderstandings abound, almost as though it were an episode of Three’s Company.
Who would like this book? You’ve probably already made up your mind about whether or not you’re going to read this book or not. If you are like me and The Rosie Project knocked your socks off, you may be tempted to read this ‘just to see’. There’s not much I can say to dissuade you. For those of you who haven’t read The Rosie Project, I still recommend it highly. Go out and buy it now, but don’t go for the two-fer.
If you’ve read The Rosie Effect and disagree with my assessment, let me know. I’ll include a link to your post here.
I received a copy of this book for review consideration from Simon and Schuster via NetGalley.