Book Review: Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

When I picked up Eleanor & Park I was expecting a book where two characters fall in-love (in such a cliché manner) and then it either ends in tragedy or happily – the way this book ended, it was neither – it ended in a hopeful note, which is a much better way to end a love story because at least that way you know for sure that it hasn’t finished just yet. That there is more to it than what is written in words.

Eleanor & Park were so much more, like so, so much more!

It was such an amazing read, and I’m so glad that I picked it up and decided to finally read it! I mean, it’s so amazing I literally read it under 10 hours! I couldn’t put it down even if I wanted to (I even read it whilst I was cooking!) and before I know it I had finished the book! In addition to it’s one of those books where you can’t just take it out of your mind for days on end. For days I was suffering from a book hangover, I couldn’t stop thinking about the ending of the book or about the characters – like what the hell happened with everyone?

It’s a book about two teenagers who fall in-love, not in a whirlwind of romance like how most YA romance seems to be – you know like love at first sight kind of romance. But, Eleanor & Park didn’t start like that, no sir! It actually started with Park being a mean guy – although he didn’t mean to be, and with Eleanor as being quiet and an outcast who has been a target of bullying the moment she stepped into that school bus. 

Eleanor is from a troubled background, from a broken, with a horrible step-father who has disgusting thoughts and is domestically abusive towards her mother. Whereas Park comes from, what Eleanor would call a ‘perfect family’ – but that isn’t the case in Park’s perspective. He doesn’t feel like he completely belong, that he can’t be himself around his family and instead created a personality that his parents will accept. And then they fall in-love.

I love how they fell in-love with each other, it totally seemed unexpected to the both of them, fist them seem to barely tolerate each others presence to them reading comics (X-Men and Watchmen and many others) together, and where they bonded the most – through music. And before you know it, their worlds seems to revolve around each other.

I’m not going to lie and say that I loved the characters from the very beginning, but as you get to know them better, you too start to fall in-love with the characters as the story progresses and start to appreciate everything about them – all the good and all the bad.

I really love Rainbow Rowell’s writing style, and the way the book narrates in both of Eleanor and Park’s perspectives – and the best part is that no one moment is the same, yes it is the same moment but written in a different point of view, a different angle, and I like that – I like that a lot. Because that way you can get the full story not just the one side of the narrator. In addition to, you can really see the full picture, and therefore relate more to the characters’ emotions

Honestly, I liked everything about this book! End of. I can’t even write anything critical about the book – well, probably apart from ending in a cliff hanger! This is where you can’t stop thinking about the book – so you end up reading and re-reading the book over and over and reliving everything that these two characters have experienced.

This isn’t your average teenage romance book, because they feel so real and their actions and emotions are so real that you will never be able to find a book that can ever be on the same level of how real these characters’ love for each other are. The cliff hanger and the way things ended between them just shows you something that isn’t completely fictional.

Hence, I highly recommend this book – if you still haven’t read it!

can I just show you how I write my book reviews before I type them up and post them on here – my initial book review for Eleanor & Park was written on the back of an envelop, because I was in school and I didn’t have my notebook, so I found a piece of envelop which contained my CV and just started writing the book review before I could forget what I was going to write!

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