Do I need to explain to you what Eleonor & Park is about? Do you even to be convinced that you should read it? And can I even possibly start to write the review that his book deserves? it’s unlikely but I’m going to try anyway.
Like Attachments, Rainbow Rowell once again transports us to a slightly different time, this time 1986. Eleaonor & Park also has one the most memorable, and most shared YA covers (US edition) of 2013. It’s cute and I’d seen alot of people talk about how cute the story was, and how cute the romance was, and it was generally all rainbows and unicorns. I started the book expecting it to be cute, understandably, so I wasn’t prepared for how utterly moving and incredibly sad it was. Yet it seems obvious to me now because Eleanor & Park is authentic and realistic, right down to the teenage awkwardness and self-awareness that Rainbow Rowell is knows for. I feel that most people love it because of the authentic way both teenagers interact.
Eleonor and Park’s romance is a shining beacon in contrast to the dysfunctional, damaging relationship that her mother and stepfather have and we love them because they know it’s still not going to be easy.
Eleonor & Park also shows us how easy it is to judge other people. We form an opinion and then take out that opinion as a fact. Park thinks that Eleonor wears unusual clothing because she wants to stand out, but in reality, its because she cannot afford to buy new clothes and to patch up her old ones. We assume, but we don’t ask. Eleonor seems melancholy most of the time, but Park notices how she lights up when talking about something she’s passionate about.
I loved that Eleonor & 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 Eleonor & 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.
Eleonor & Park is a novel that you’ll read an understand why people love it so much, even if it’s not your cup of tea.