Tuesday, 11 February 2014
Review: Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Blurb: Eleanor is the new girl in town, and she's never felt more alone. With her mismatched clothes, mad red hair and chaotic home life, she couldn't stick out more if she tried. Then she takes the seat on the bus next to Park. Quiet, careful and- in Eleanor's eyes- impossibly cool, Park's worked out that flying under the radar is the best way to get by. Slowly, steadily, through late-night conversations and an ever-growing stack of mix-tapes, Eleanor and Park fall in love. They fall in love the way you do the first time, when you're sixteen, and you have nothing and everything to lose.
What I thought: Eleanor & Park was completely different from how I thought it would be. In a good way. It's not that I was expecting it to be bad, it just surprised me. Mainly in the writing. Rainbow Rowell wrote this book so perfectly; her so style is so right for this kind of story. It's romantic and swoon-worthy and so, so sincere.
One of my favourite parts of this book was the characterization. Eleanor and Park and everyone else felt so complete. They didn't have just one side to them; they were fully functional, not at all perfect people. I really loved the people I was supposed to love, and hated the people I was supposed to hate. The emotions were so vivid and real, you couldn't help falling in love with Eleanor and Park.
Pretty much the only thing I thought could have been done better was the setting. I loved the idea of the story being set in the eighties, but it really didn't come up that much. Aside from mix-tapes and Walkmans, there wasn't much to show that it wasn't based right now. I felt that Rainbow Rowell could have made more of the setting, but that was the only thing I would have improved upon.
Overall, I really loved this book. It was sweet and happy and romantic, and then it had a darker side, so it was a good balance. The writing was awesome, the characters were interesting, and their love felt so real.