Title: Eleanor and Park
Author: rainbow rowell
Genre: romance/ slice of life/friendship
Review: Do I need to explain to you what Eleanor & Park is about? Do you even need to be convinced that you should read it? And can I even possibly start to write the review that this book deserves? It’s unlikely, but I’m going to try anyway.
I first read Fangirl, then Attachments, then it was time to pick up the ‘big one’.Eleanor & Park is the novel that propelled Rainbow Rowell into ‘YA authors that everyone should read’ status – and it feels like everyone did read it. As said inA Chat With Rainbow Rowell About Love and Censorship: ‘I loved it, my mother loved it, my pregnant coworker loved it, my friend who “never reads YA” loved it. You probably loved it, too.’. And with popular books comes high expectations…
Rainbow Rowell has written a romance that everyone has experienced. Not only is this story directed at teens, adults will fall in love with it as well simply because we were all teenagers once. Eleanor & Park are average teens who have their own share of problems, but, all of those memories and pain disappears when they are together. Park admits to Eleanor that he needs her because she is the only person who understands him.
For Eleanor, Park is the escape she needs because he is the only person who sees beyond her size and hair color. However, Park has what Eleanor does not, which is a stable home life. Because of Eleanor’s abusive stepfather and abused mother, she cannot have luxuries such as comic books, music, and even a toothbrush. Although this is none of her fault, she cannot be honest with Park because she is ashamed of her situation. Granted, she loves her siblings more than anything, she wants nothing more but to get away from it all and Park gives her that chance by letting her live in his world (even if it’s for a moment or two). I fell in love Park,myself, when he ended up beating up Steve for insulting Eleanor; it’s not every day your boyfriend risks suspension, a swollen eye, and a broken nose to defend your honor.
It was at that point that Eleanor realized that someone as cool as Park could love her and maybe, just maybe, that life would give her a break. Sadly, life is never that simple, especially when the people that were supposed to take of her are abusive,submissive, and dismissive. I wanted nothing than to crawl into this book and hold onto Eleanor and her siblings because all of them deserved so much more and, unfortunately, children do not get to chose their parents. This is the type of book where readers will want curl up on my couch and devour it because everything in this story is real; teens and adults know what it’s liked to be love, to be bullied, to feel scared, and to feel that things seem hopeless. However, this story also shows what it’s like to be crazy happy. This books has managed to transform me into the 16 year old girl I was knew and it was because of her that I feel that Eleanor and Park will have the happy ending that we all dream of.
Like Attachments, Rainbow Rowell once again transports us to a slightly different time, this time 1986 on a high school bus in Omaha, but Eleanor & Park could have also been set in the 1990s or 2000s. Eleanor & Park also shows us how easy it is to judge other people. We form an opinion and then take that opinion as fact. Park thinks that Eleanor wears unusual clothing because she wants to stand out, but in reality, it’s because she cannot afford to buy new clothes and has to patch up her old ones. We assume, but we don’t even ask. Eleanor seems melancholy most of the time, but Park notices how she lights up when talking about something she’s passionate about, like the comic books and music he lends her, not unlike the enthusiasm we see in Fangirl. I loved that Eleanor & Park shows how much an interest or hobby, no matter how silly or trivial it seems to other people, can make a real difference to someone’s life. So Eleanor & Park is about the romance, yes, but it’s also about pushing through life, just trying to make it better in any way you can.
Eleanor & Park is a novel that you have to read to understand the comments people make about this book and it was given to me highly recommended and I highly recommend it to anyone who thinks about reading this.
Buy it here:
Also see:Attachments by Rainbow Rowell