My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Bookshelves: chick-lit, humor, fluff, rom-com, love-story-not-a-romance, poking-fun-at-serious-stuff, funny, this-is-all-the-romance-i-can-take
Well, I absolutely loved this sharp bit of fluff (I know that’s an oxymoron, but it fits), this laugh-out-loud love story that’s basically “Sheldon Cooper Searches for a Wife.” I mean, it is a howl.
And I sat down and wrote that and a little bit more, and then I checked a couple of negative reviews, because I like to see what the detractors are saying about something I love, and now I just backspaced over a bunch of what I originally wrote because I’m not sure if I should be pissed off instead at a story that is mocking people with Asperger’s Syndrome. I mean, I can see both sides of it. I would certainly not want people with Asperger’s to be laughed at. I wouldn’t laugh at a book that turns the ugliness of racism or rape or religious persecution into a joke.
But on the other hand. This is why we have two hands.
From what I’ve read about Asperger’s (which is limited, I admit), protagonist Don Tillman is not very typical — he ticks off virtually every box in the list of behaviors, which is not common at all. So, do I decide Tillman is a caricature and get even more righteously PC pissed? Or do I realize that this is a really good learning opportunity, and that perhaps this character was created and written exactly the way he is to give the rest of the world a taste of what it’s like to navigate the world as an Aspie? I loved the book The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which did a bang-up job of showing us the world through the processing of someone with autism. Someone spun me a good story, and I learned a few things. I never felt that I was laughing at him, and I particularly never felt that the author wrote the book as a way of mocking autistic people.
I’ve decided not to be pissed. I’ve decided the author did a great job creating an entertaining character and an entertaining story, one that you can read in one lazy afternoon and that will make you laugh out loud in places and learn something at the same time (flounders’ eyes–who knew?). I would perhaps not marry Don Tillman, but I wouldn’t mind if my best friend did.
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