Our April Read will be “The Rosie Project”. See below for a synopsis of the book as well as a few other suggested reads from Kim Oh.
The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion
This rather short fiction (295 pages) by New Zealand born Australian author is full of humor and charm. Simsion is multitalented intellectual, a funny and creative man, married to a Psychiatry Professor. In this entertaining fiction, bits of medical science, psychiatry, and some unique aspects of academic life are mixed with everyday life drama.
Quotes from Amazon.com:
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 sixteen-page, scientifically valid survey to filter out the drinkers, the smokers, the late arrivers.
Rosie Jarman possesses all these qualities. Don easily disqualifies her as a candidate for The Wife Project (even if she is “quite intelligent for a barmaid”). But Don 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 realization that, despite your best scientific efforts, you don’t find love, it finds you.
Arrestingly endearing and entirely unconventional, Graeme Simsion’s distinctive debut “navigates the choppy waters of adult relationships, both romantic and platonic, with a fresh take (USA TODAY). “Filled with humor and plenty of heart, The Rosie Project is a delightful reminder that all of us, no matter how we’re wired, just want to fit in” (Chicago Tribune).
- How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World, by Steven Johnson
This nonfiction authored by Steven Johnson, a science writer, consist of informative and thought provoking stories about six innovations that made modern day life possible (refrigeration, eye glasses, clock, etc.). Johnson is great story teller, as seen in his 2007 non-fiction, The Ghost Map: The Story of London’s Most Terrifying Epidemic—and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World.
- The Wright Brothers, by David McCullough
I enjoyed this well researched book on the Wright brothers. Here are some quotes from
David McCullough, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize, tells the surprising, profoundly American story of Wilbur and Orville Wright.
In this thrilling book, master historian David McCullough draws on the immense riches of the Wright Papers, including private diaries, notebooks, scrapbooks, and more than a thousand letters from private family correspondence to tell the human side of the Wright Brothers’ story, including the little-known contributions of their sister, Katharine, without whom things might well have gone differently for them.
- Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande
In Being Mortal, Gawande, a practicing surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and a professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard, explores aging, death, and medical practice. The title of this nonfiction sounds depressing. Probably too heavy/gloomy subject to discuss in bookclub?! But it is “must read for anyone who may face death. That is everyone.” Here are some review/comments about this book, that I agree with:
“American medicine, Being Mortal reminds us, has prepared itself for life but not for death. This is Atul Gawande’s most powerful–and moving–book.” ―Malcolm Gladwell
“Beautifully crafted . . . Being Mortal is a clear-eyed, informative exploration of what growing old means in the 21st century . . . a book I cannot recommend highly enough. This should be mandatory reading for every American. . . . it provides a useful roadmap of what we can and should be doing to make the last years of life meaningful.” ―Time.com
“Masterful . . . Essential . . . For more than a decade, Atul Gawande has explored the fault lines of medicine . . . combining his years of experience as a surgeon with his gift for fluid, seemingly effortless storytelling . . . In Being Mortal, he turns his attention to his most important subject yet.” ―Chicago Tribune
“Beautifully written . . . In his newest and best book, Gawande . . . has provided us with a moving and clear-eyed look at aging and death in our society, and at the harms we do in turning it into a medical problem, rather than a human one.” ―The New York Review of Books
“Atul Gawande’s wise and courageous book raises the questions that none of us wants to think about . . . Remarkable.” ―John Carey, The Sunday Times (UK)