Plot: (via Goodreads)
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’m trying to get to the point where I can accurately say how much I love this book but it involves a lot of hand gesturing and incoherent noises. I will do my best, but know this: I LOVE this book way more than I can express in words!
I’ve read books in the past where I’ve thought that it was great material, just not great writing. Eleanor and Park is not such a book. It is fast paced and switches between the two main characters in a way so that you can track the rising levels of adoration and love in both characters. It is easy reading and the story doesn’t slow down in places. It is written in a way that slows you down, you start reading slower because it is so unbelievably sweet and poignant and heart rendering and you just want to pay more attention to these two because what goes on between them is so beautiful.
The story is simultaneously unbearably beautiful and sad. Think The Fault in Our Stars, but without all the terminal characters. There are times where you will want to weep at the beauty of the human heart and times where you will want to scream at the horrific nature some people possess so easily.
Ah man. The main characters. They are the teens you see on the street, trying to figure out this human existence and what to do with it. Eleanor and Park are two people I haven’t found in other books – their uniqueness shines through the pages. Park is popular and accepted in his town but he always has that knowledge that he is “different”. He is half-Korean and half-American, and he has constant referencing to the fact that he is biracial. Eleanor has so much on her poor teenage plate and it comes across that Park is the only light in her life. She has her normal teenage girl body part issues and then her mother and house situation. They have their differences and their relationship is sometimes laced with frustration because their upbringings are so radically different but they are so inlove and manage to stick it out together.
I saw this quote once and loved it only to find out that it is in this book:
Favorite scene: By far their first handholding. I nearly went comatose of sweet heartache and pain on the friggin spot.
I would definitely recommend a lot of people to give this book a try – it is such a beautiful read!