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3.8 out of 5 stars
37
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 24 January 2009
I love the idea for the book, and I am normally raving about comedies, but this book left me slightly dissapointed. Some parts were incredibly funny that I had to tell my brother and mum about, other parts I just couldn't wait to finish. The story is about a woman called Grace who has a type of OCD disorder. She counts everything: the seeds in her cake so she knows how many bites to take out; the number of steps to the cafe and has to buy everything so it is linked to ten. She meets somebody who she starts to date and he wants her to get over her problem and because of him she agrees to having counciling. The ending of this book was not what I expected but was yet satisfying. The main down point, as I pointed out earlier, is the fact that it is not a humorous as I would have expected from a comedy. It's an okay book - but far from being a best read.
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VINE VOICEon 10 July 2008
I liked this book but unfortunately I couln't rave about it. The idea for the book is original and very funny at times but yet I did find myself rushing to get to the end so I could move on to another book.

The story is of Grace, a 35 year old "counter" - she counts the bristles on her toothbrush - 1768, she counts the poppy seeds on her daily orange cake (which then determins how many bites it must take her to eat it), and she has strict routines, down to the very second, that never vary - until she meats Seamus.

The character of Grace is easy to warm to as she has a great sense of humour and has an array of great one liners. All in all, this is quite a sweet book but not one that grabbed me enough to either rave about or want to read again.
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on 22 April 2013
I had been recommended this book and I owe them a massive thanks, this was a gem of a novel turning a serious subject into something more light hearted whilst still allowing us to understand what having OCD is like.
The characters are the central pillar around which the novel was formed and I loved them. Grace has to be one of the most loveable (if sometimes frustrating) characters I have ever read. Toni Jordan allowing us to glimpse what frustrations life with OCD would bring, both to the person themselves and to anyone close to those with OCD. In the end though Grace proves to be so charming and sweet that I, like the characters in the book, loved her for who she is.
Seamus was a perfect character to balance out Grace. He was patient, kind and caring in helping Grace through her problems and seeing her for the person she was as opposed to just someone with a mental health condition. Upon their meeting the novel embarks upon the cause of the most debate. With Grace attending therapy session and taking medication to help her control her counting, it lets us ponder whether it’s the right thing to do after all. Do we prefer Grace as she is or when she has a freedom from counting? Should we really try to change someone who is happy being different?
The only downside for me was the frequent reference to Nickola Tesla. I can understand why this was important to Grace and why it was needed, but I felt it diverted attention from the main issue. I didn’t want a history lesson on Tesla; I wanted to hear more about Grace.
Overall I would say a very entertaining read with lots of humour and one I would definitely recommend to anyone in search of a good read.
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on 27 November 2009
I bought this book a few months ago but just didn't get around to reading it, however last week whilst recovering from flu I decided to give it a go which as it turns out, was a wise choice. Not too long, this is a spirited and at times moving story, if a little predictable. This is what I would call a "no brainer", there are no complex characters or plot to follow and the writer gives a sensitive insight into the world of mental illness while managing to ensure it doesn't take over the narrative.
Highly recommended & enjoyable read.
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on 17 November 2008
Another review I read referred to this book as quirky which I think is a good description. It is a strangely disturbing but at the same time humorous read. It is certainly a novel with a very unusual theme.

Grace Lisa Vandenburg counts due to the fact that she suffers from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. This is a far from easy condition to live with and not an easy subject to write about in a humorous manner. Somehow Toni Jordan has succeeded and although I found the subject matter disturbing there is humour in this love story.
Grace counts just about everything in her life from letters in peoples names, steps she takes to get from place to another and the number of bites needed to eat a meal! The letters in her name (19) are identical to those of Seamus Joseph O'Reilly also a (19), the man she meets who befriends her, which helps her in those first tentative steps towards accepting his friendship.
Their relationship blooms but it takes Grace a long time to come to terms with the fact that although she will always have behavioural problems there are people who love her for herself. There is no doubt that Grace's OCD has interfered with her life for many years and she has more than once made unsuccessful attempts to overcome it. Seamus is incredibly patient with Grace and eventually it all works out for them thanks to Grace realising that `Average does not mean normal'
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on 25 July 2008
This was the latest book for my book club and I think it was a good choice. Grace's story of her need to count everything, from the number of steps to the cafe to the poppy seeds on her cake, is one many of us could relate to. Who doesn't have some wierd quirk in their personality? What is normal and who are we to judge? The book gave our group lots to talk about.
Grace is a witty narrator and, at first, her counting and strict routine almost make sense. It's only when we begin to see how her obsession interferes with her life that the reader sees how destructive it is. But there are indications that Grace can change and adapt. Having a slghtly obsessive personality myself, I found I could really relate to her! Grace eventually enters therpy to help with her condition and it's a testament to Jordan's fine storytelling that the language and pace of the book change to reflect how Grace's medication affects her personality. The reader really gets a feel for how different Grace is without her counting and how the counting is an essential part of who she is.
Addition is an easy read, but gives you plenty to think about. The charaters are believable and entertaining. It's a lovely read for anyone who enjoys a happy ending, but also wants a book with a little substance.
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on 25 July 2009
This is the best book I've read in a long time. It caught me straight from the beginning and kept me turning the pages all day and night - I couldn't put it down. I found the writing very witty and well written, covering some serious issues.
I totally recommend this book. Not too long, easy to read, funny, sad and feel good.
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on 13 July 2008
Buy this book! It is funny, thought provoking and fast-paced. We've all got our strange ways, and Grace has more than most, but she's self aware and witty with it. I'm not a Richard and Judy fan so I was pleasantly surprised when I got into the story. Enjoy!
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on 28 September 2008
I got this book randomly in a special offer but it was much better than expected. Packaged as 'chick-lit', it's not normally a genre I would pick up but it turned out to be a light, romantic read with depth too.
I chuckled by the second page: Grace is a witty, flawed and likeable and the characters she describes are equally funny such as her mother and psychiatrist and her therapy group of obsessive compulsives. Seamus is the man every girl wants to meet and the romance very sweet. I rooted for Grace and loved how she manages to resist to conform despite the many well-intended pressures around her. Some of the sex-scene info is a little predictable but overall unputdownable. Also reminded me a little of 'The curious incident of the Dog in the Nightime'. Addition
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on 2 September 2008
Often fiction books talking about OCD dont do the illness any justice, formed on stereotypical hand-washers or hoarders etc. However this book is different! finally a book that looks at the emotional pain OCD casuses and shows the hell OCD is to live with. this book is great for OCD sufferers to read and also to publicise the hidden depths of OCD. really enjoyed the book, although i dont know how someone without OCD would view it but having it myself i found myself nodding along to things grace talks about... if only we could all find a seamus to get us through treatment! great book, well worth a read.
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