Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Audiobook; Listening Library
Voices by Rebecca Lowman and Sunil Malhotra
Do I need to explain what Eleanor & Park is about? Is there anyone in the book world that doesn’t know already? Well, just in case, here’s the Goodreads synopsis:
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…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.
I’ve been putting off this review since I finished the audiobook back in September. Why? Well, because I don’t really know how to accurately describe Eleanor & Park without doing it proper justice. It’s more than a teen love story– it’s… it’s life. Parts are gritty, parts are adorable, parts are tearful and, unfortunately, it always ends.
I listened to this audiobook during my commute to work and there were some mornings that I’d arrive at work needing to fix my face from tearing up while driving. Other parts made me laugh out loud and look like an idiot at a stop light. But, I didn’t care. Eleanor and Park are adorable–both hopeful and realistic at the same time.
I was hesitant to check this out at first, to be honest. I was like, “Oh gross. A teen love story. I don’t like books that make me want to barf.” But, it wasn’t like that at all. It was cute and tender and endearing and everything first love should be mixed with the grit of real life that can’t always take a backseat to first love. See? I cannot do this work justice. If you haven’t read/listened to it then please do.