The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion
My friend Noah warned me not to read this book because he’d heard that it was a let down after The Rosie Project. He hadn’t read it himself, but the stories were enough. This was a letdown, compared to how amazing the first book was.
But I still decided to read it. And it was probably my biggest mistake of the week. My friend was not wrong, in fact, he was completely right. And I’m still not over it.
The biggest problem with The Rosie Effect is that it tries too hard to be better than The Rosie Project – which would probably be achievable if it was any other series, but not in this case. It just couldn’t live up to the legacy, and trying to write a sequel is just milking the proverbial cow.
In this sequel, Don and Rosie are happily married and have been for around a year. However, when Rosie becomes pregnant, Don retreats into himself, despite all the progress he made in the previous novel, and begins a madcap journey that has no plot and makes little to no sense. Lots of his actions do, admittedly, make sense, if you consider his character, but a few of them seem a bit too much, even for Don Tillman.
The way he treats his wife, and his unborn child, is fucking ridiculous, and the situations he gets into are just not feasible. For anyone. It’s just such a stretch from what would be the reality that I just couldn’t take this book seriously.
Sequels are always worse than the first book, except in a few circumstances (eg. Harry Potter, Skulduggery Pleasant, Percy Jackson, ACOTAR…) so I’m not sure what I actually expected, going into this book. Maybe a plot? I think if this book had had a plot, it would have been slightly more tolerable.
To those of you who loved the first book, as I did… Don’t bother with this book. It will ruin the series for you, and if you really must read it, I would recommend passing on the buying front, and rather borrowing it from a friend of the library.
I gave this book a slightly tentative two out of five stars, because, at the end of the day, the writing was still enjoyable, and Don Tillman will always be one of my favourite book characters.