A review of Eleanor & Park (by Rainbow Rowell)

I had heard very positive reviews about this novel. I also had been a little skeptical, because I thought this book would be cliché. Boy meets girl, something happens that keeps them apart, and so on. Eleanor & Park is not that kind of novel. It’s real, different, and unputdownable. The story is really unique, I can tell you 100% that it’s worth reading. The story is sweet and real. Rainbow Rowell has written a different young adult novel, it’s unlike anything I have ever read.


Eleanor & Park

Bono met his wife in high school, Park says.
So did Jerry Lee Lewis, Eleanor answers.
I’m not kidding, he says.
You should be, she says, we’re 16.
What about Romeo and Juliet?
Shallow, confused, then dead.
I love you, Park says.
Wherefore art thou, Eleanor answers.
I’m not kidding, he says.
You should be.

Set over the course of one school year in 1986, this 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.

My thoughts

I really liked Eleanor. She’s very smart, ignores the mean and hateful comments characters in the book throw at her, and she tries to find silver linings on a bad day. She also has a unique and different sense of style. Throughout the entire novel, I was rooting for her. Eleanor is the type of character that is hard to forget, and the type that you only come across once.

Park is cool. That’s probably an over-used word, but that’s what he is. You can’t help but like him, he has a great taste in music, he’s semi-popular (which he doesn’t care about at all), and he treats Eleanor with respect. Unlike most novels about young characters in love, Park isn’t a fool. He knows that there’s a small chance that he and Eleanor won’t last, but he’s brave enough to try. So is Eleanor.

To sum up

I highly recommend this unique novel. The story is not predictable, it’s not your typical young love story. It’s an engrossing read, the characters are relatable, the plot is strong, and the story is remarkable. Rainbow Rowell has written a truly unforgettable novel.


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