Number of Pages: 328
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Release Date: February 26, 2013
“Set over the course of one school year in 1986, ELEANOR AND PARK is the story of two star-crossed misfits – smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try. When Eleanor meets Park, you’ll remember your own first love – and just how hard it pulled you under.”
This novel has been on my TBR list for quite some time now, but I just haven’t had the time to read it until recently. I absolutely LOVE the front cover- it’s simple and cute and just perfect. I wanted to read this even before I knew what it was about just from looking at the front cover. I have heard so many reviews about this book that I had no idea what to expect when I opened to the first page. Some people absolutely loved it, while others couldn’t see what all of the hype was about.
Well, now that I have read it I am happy to say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading Eleanor & Park. It was refreshing to read a YA contemporary romance story that wasn’t the same old story regurgitated up in slightly different words. Eleanor wasn’t you typical protagonist at all. Usually in romances, the female protagonist is thin and pretty and blonde and fairly average or normal. However, Eleanor is heavier with huge curly red hair and her own unique style. Her family life is dreadful, but it’s more than just a bad divorce like in most novels. Furthermore, the romance between Eleanor and Park is far more than plain teenage lust. Park makes Eleanor feel better in her own skin and is an escape from her horrible home life. Eleanor makes Park realize that it’s okay to be himself, no matter who that person may be. Their love is both friendship and romance rolled into one wonderful relationship. And even though it may be cheesy, it’s refreshing in a way that most romance novels aren’t.
This is the first and only piece of writing I have read by Rainbow Rowell, and I am very impressed. Her words flow nicely on the page, and there was never a time while I was reading this novel that I felt like it was dragging on forever. The pacing of the plot was great, and the character development was superb. The depths of the personalities of the characters grew remarkably from the beginning of the story to the end. Speaking of the ending, I was actually pretty satisfied with how this book came to a close. It definitely wasn’t what I expected, and it was far from a fairy-tale ending. It was bittersweet, but that’s how the entire story was. It wouldn’t have made sense for the ending to be overly happy when the book was both uplifting and heart-wrenching.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I don’t have any major complaints. It looks like this time judging a book by its cover was the right thing to do!
My Rating: :0) :0) :0) :0) :0) 5 out of 5 smileys.
Would I recommend it to a friend?: Yes!