Re-read for the third time. Reviewed for the first.
Title : Eleanor and Park
Author : Rainbow Rowell
Genre : YA Contemporary, YA Romance
One extraordinary love.
Eleanor… Red hair, wrong clothes. Standing behind him until he turns his head. Lying beside him until he wakes up. Making everyone else seem drabber and flatter and never good enough…Eleanor.
Park… He knows she’ll love a song before he plays it for her. He laughs at her jokes before she ever gets to the punch line. There’s a place on his chest, just below his throat, that makes her want to keep promises…Park.
Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.
. Writing : It is in no way poetic or beautiful writing. And yet, it connects. The style of writing is something unique to Rowell, because it is quirky and witty with short and crisp word usage. Very compact style of writing, which suits the theme of the story and the age and setting of the characters.
. Diverse : I’m honestly so tired of reading about perfect YA and non-YA heroines (but actually, especially YA), who have a gorgeous body and a beautiful face and at the same time are witty and sharp and smart and sassy and just goddamn perfect. I especially am tired of reading sixteen year old girls having a body perfect for modelling – like, seriously, I’m sixteen and probably 1% of all girls I know have a body worth envying – whereas in YA books, everyone pops up to be the style icon.
Eleanor is a breath of fresh air. (I also love Park’s culture and background.)
. Realistic and simple : Eleanor and Park doesn’t try to be a dramatic swoon-worthy epic love story – no, it sticks to the boundaries of what a tenth or eleventh grader should have as a love life – when you like someone for the first time and feel as if this is it whereas actually it is far from it. Even though we as readers know that they both may not be true soul-mates or whatever, Eleanor and Park believe that they are and that is exactly what it feels like when you fall for someone for the first time. So I like that Rowell kept that realistic.
Also, all the insecurities of the main characters – they are so relatable. I don’t know if it’s because I’m the same age as the protagonists, but Eleanor and Park are characters I know and have felt inside me at some point or other.
I don’t know. I can’t find any. I’m not saying it’s a perfect book but it doesn’t have to be. Whatever it is, it’s enough and beautiful. For a YA contemporary, I don’t need anything else in a book. This is it.
YA contemporary lovers. Romance lovers.
A ‘good book’ or a ‘good read’?
An amazing book.
No surprise. 5/5 stars.
[It’s one of my all-time favorite books.]