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Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell – Review

Eleanor & Park - Rainbow Rowell

This book was a total disappointment. I should not have picked it up and I would not have finished it if it had not been on my kindle. I did not actively read it. I read one or two pages at a time in between little breaks during work or when I had to wait for something. That is why I finished it and was able to give it one star. Usually I do not rate books with just one star because I just do not finish them.

 

I will not ramble on and on about how I did not like this book. I know many people love this book and they have their reasons. I have my reasons why I did not enjoy “Eleanor & Park” but that gives me no right to talk trash about this book. Rainbow Rowell is a fantastic writer and she put a lot of effort in this book. There is no need to belittle that.

 

This book is about “Two misfits. 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...
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...
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.” (Goodreads).

 

I should have never decided to read this book. I know that I do not like cheesy romance novels. I know that I do not like protagonists that are that young. So the question is why did I still want to read this book? I think it happened because of the reading high I still had from “Fangirl”. I loved “Fangirl” and I wanted to read something else by Rainbow Rowell. So many people were saying that they liked “Eleanor & Park” even better that I wanted to know if I would, too. I ignored all the warning bells.

 

Unfortunately it took me only a couple of pages before I knew that I would not enjoy this book. I did not connect to the main characters, I did not care about their relationship and felt downright bored, and I cringed at some of the things Eleanor or Park were doing. I started to skim over the pages instead of reading them. I found the writing not as good as it was in “Fangirl” and therefore found it pointless to try to get into the story again.

 

The one thing I was kind of interested in was the family dynamics. Much to my chagrin Rowell decided to just scratch on the surface of all the family problems. I would have preferred a focus on that instead of the romance.

 

For many readers this is one of their favorite books but I should have stayed away from it. I should have listened to my gut feeling….