Thursday, June 26, 2014

Eleanor & Park
By Rainbow Rowell


2 out of 5

Eleanor is a troubled, slightly chubby, fiery redheaded girl who makes the mistake of not knowing where to sit on the bus. Park is a half Asian, bit of an outsider, indie music boy who makes the mistake of letting her sit in his seat with him. This is how it begins. Slowly, over time, Eleanor and Park become acquaintances, and then friends, the boyfriend/girlfriend, and then much more. But their lives are far from easy. Bullies and hatred meet them at every turn, even at home, and Eleanor's home life is a constant worry and struggle in her life. But they say true love conquers all right? Can Eleanor and Park's love do just that?

I am sorry to say that this book kind of disappointed me. Having just finished Fangirl, and completely loving it, I had high expectations for this book, and it, just did not live up. I felt that the characters were too rigid in their major character flaws. Eleanor was too closed up and defensive, even after admitting that she loved Park, she still snapped at him, and didn't let him know what was really going on. And Park, Park was too himself. Too easily angered, and driven to rage. To needing to be different from everyone else. To obsessively in love with Eleanor. That goes for both of them. Obsessively in love. This may be classic teen love, or it could be the epic love story of Eleanor and Park's time, but really, they were obsessed. Maybe this is just a never-been-in-love cynic talking, but I didn't like how completely dependent they were on each other, and how there was no just Eleanor, no just Park. There was only Eleanor and Park. If you saw a relationship like this in real life, it would not be okay. It would be deemed unhealthy. I understand what Rainbow Rowell was trying to convey with their story and the way people connect through different medias and crossing all sorts of boundaries to be together, but I really didn't think that this book was as good as everybody has been saying.

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