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.
Miss Riki’s Review:
Every once in awhile I’ll read a book that I simply cannot get enough of, and Eleanor & Park was one of those books. It was a quick read, but I found myself really slowing down and relishing every word. Oh, the cute in this book! From the moment that Eleanor begins reading Park’s comics over his shoulder, to the first time he leaves her one of her own to read, I was hooked on this absolutely wonderful love.
What strikes me right away is the beautiful diversity of these lead characters. Eleanor is all kinds of awkward, yet still beautiful and wonderful in every way. She’s fighting a losing battle in her home life that broke my heart on every level. Park is not your typical leading man either, yet he’s the perfect match for Eleanor in this book. The way he’s able to see more than what meets the eye in Eleanor, and how he stands up for her to both friends and family is refreshing. Together these two misfit kids make the sweetest and most believable couple I’ve read in young adult literature in a long time. Even though the odds are absolutely stacked against them, you can’t help but root for them and want things to work out in their favor.
Rainbow Rowell has captured what it’s like to be a teenager perfectly. She explores some pretty heavy subject matter in the book, but it’s never heavy handed or melodramatic. The all-consuming passion of first love is evident on every page, yet it’s still sweet and innocent. This book is everything I could ask for in YA. It gave me the butterflies of first love and the crazy, warm feeling of real romance. It also broke my heart and made me cry. It’s both heartwarming and heartbreaking on so many levels.
This was the second of Rainbow Rowell’s novels that I’ve read (see my review of ATTACHMENTS) and I can say that I am absolutely a fan. I can’t wait to read more of her!