author: Rainbow Rowell
title: Eleanor & Park
publisher: St. Martins
publication date: February 26, 2013
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.
Okay so after Fangirl Eleanor & Park is the second book I’ve read by Rainbow Rowell and oh my gosh I need to read more. This book was everything I expected it to be. It gave me that wonderful melty feeling in my chest. I was a mess reading that story. The whole story had my emotions going up and down like a rollercoaster. I can’t even count how many times my heart was broken throughout the entire thing. I shed so many tears I don’t think I have any more left. And every time I thought it couldn’t get any worse, Park would do or say something that would make me burst into tears again … and again … and again.
Now I totally understand why Rainbow Rowell is so beloved. She is so amazingly talented I can’t even. She has this amazing abilty to make you feel like you’re actually part of the story. She makes you feel like if this is your story. If you are rereading something you’ve experienced in real life.
„I don’t like you, Park,“ she said, sounding for a second like she actually meant it. „I …“ – her voice nearly disappeared – „think I live for you.“
So in this book it’s 1986 and Eleanor’s life isn’t easy. She is one of five children and living with her siblings and her mother, who’s married to an absolute jerk named Richie you just doesn’t seem to care at all except about himself. She’s cooped up with all her siblings in a tiny tiny room and their bathroom doesn’t even have a door. They don’t have a lot of money. She doesn’t have shampoo, make-up or anything else girls would like to have at her age. She doesn’t even have enough money to buy herself new books or clothes that would actually fit her.
On her first day at school she meets Park, an asian kid who goes to the same school as her and shares his seat with her on the bus, which is just the beginning of an incredible friendship, lovestory and an absolutely emotional rollercoaster ride. After sitting on the bus together day after they, they bond over comic books and music.
The best thing about this book is how Rainbow Rowell writes about falling in love for the first time, with making mix tapes of your favorite songs, doodling and scribbling names and song lyrics onto your school books and having butterflies in your stomach. I love Park. I love him so much I just can’t. I really can’t. He is definitely book-boy-material, like top 5 book boy material. Whatever he said, whatever he thought, whatever he did – throughout the whole book I just wished someone would get me my own Park. He’s beyond perfect and I am absolutely in love with him.
But besides that I loved the book, it also made me so angry. Like really angry. Sometimes I wished I could have slapped all these people, who treated Eleanor like crap, right in their stupid face. I felt so sorry for her – it just broke my heart – many many times.
„I want everyone to meet you. You’re my favorite person of all time.“
What I also loved and practically adored about this book was that the characters were totally different to characters from other books. Eleanor isn’t a beauty queen; she isn’t tall, skinny and beautiful. She is a thick, redhead with dishevelled hair and clothes that look like she found it in some trash bin. And Park isn’t Quarterback of his school football team, he isn’t blonde and tall and big and strong and muscular (at least not as much as probably most other guys from other books), he’s a normal kid with an asian mother and a white father who loves music and comic books.
As soon as I started reading I couldn’t put it down again. Rainbow Rowell managed (again) to pull my heart right into this story and make me fall in love with all her wonderful characters and actually made me want to experience something great as this on my own (not that I haven’t already tho haha)
When I finished this book, it took me some time to realize how good it was. It had me crying, laughing and cursing so bad, it was perfect. It is perfect.
„Nobody thinks Asian guys are hot,“ Park said finally.
There is just one tiny little thing which left me behind a little disappointed. I just wished she would have told us how the whole thing ended between Eleanor, her step dad and her mother and of course her siblings. I loved the ending; it was mind blowing and heart breaking but it came so sudden; I expected a couple of more pages.
But besides that I loved it so so much. Rainbow Rowell gave me all the feels. Everyone who hasn’t read this book yet should pick it up like right now and read it. It’s definitely worth it. But make sure you have your tissues ready.