Monday, June 29, 2015

Review: Eleanor & Park

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell Goodreads | Amazon

Stand Alone

Published by St Martin's Press February 28, 2013

328 Pages

Source: Library

Bookologists Analysis: A cute romance of the nitty and gritty world of the 80s and high school.

Two misfits.
One extraordinary love.

... 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.

Eleanor and Park had the vibe of something real. The story was set with a broken household and with a multiracial household. It isn't the  perfect suburban romance which is so common in the teen section. The constant tenacity of Eleanor was understandable, but sometimes it got on my nerves. Eleanor had the right psychology in how Rainbow Rowell wanted to present Eleanor, however it isn't how I wanted to see the book. On the flip side, Park was determined and stubborn through out-- something I identify more so with. Even at the end however the main character traits had not changed. For me the character development was little stagnate despite the possibility of more growth especially along the plot line of families. 

The writing of Eleanor and Park has been heralded by much of the YA community, though I can't disagree with it, I don't fully join the choruses. The writing of Eleanor and Park is a needed addition to the teen romance repitiore. The addition is need especially considering the period of time the book is set in (70s/80s) not being fleshed out in YA writing because it's not exactly historical ficiton or realistic ficiton exactly. Many YA writers grew during this time, so it's their reality, while for teens the time period is shrouded in clouds. I think Rowell exposing the more ordinary, middle class part of this period is necessarry. 

I really enojoyed the freshness of the Eleanor and Park. The writing laid out the occasional the poetic flashes of the teenage brain, but also simplicity of a train of thoughts. The actual story line was a little bland, but I encourage people to give Rainbow Rowell a try even if the story isn't revolutionary.  It's more of a subtle turn of page with a story of the ordinary. Rating: 3.5 Stars

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