30th May to 22nd June
Link to Goodreads Description
This one took me a while to finish as I started the Tome Topple read-a-thon half way through but how long it took to read shouldn’t be a reflection on how much I enjoyed this one because I loved it! I have seen mixed thoughts and I can understand why others might dislike it but for me, someone who has lived in a similar situation, I loved how realistic and accurate it was!
As always I will start with what I loved, the thing I loved the most about this one is that, for me personally, it was very realistic. From age 15 to 23 I was living in a mentally abusive household, after my father died things changed in our living situation that caused a lot of tension and so I can really relate to Eleanor as a character. I was actually shocked at how accurate some situations were, for example there is a point in the book where her mother is basically accusing her of causing an atmosphere and winding her step dad up on purpose but I think all she’d done was ask for something basic most others take for granted and this is so reminiscent of times I was told I was “causing an atmosphere” that I almost cried for Eleanor. I can understand why some people would be frustrated by the characters and I think if I hadn’t lived through a similar situation I probably wouldn’t have had much patience with the book.
The next thing I loved was how Park & Eleanor interacted with each other, it was a little bit insta-lovey BUT after that point it was very slow burning. I loved the way he made mixed tapes for her and how they had banter about comics etc. I adored Park’s family they seemed like your average normal kind of family not perfect but strong and united!
The last thing I absolutely loved about this book is how well Rainbow Rowell captured the feeling of teenage first loves! The intensity, self doubt, awkward behaviour – everything was on point! It made me think back to my first teenage loves and it was scarily accurate, like she knew about the relationship I had in my teens and just changed the names and some of the situations in this book! It is so hard for me to enjoy YA contemporary because it’s hard for an author to get it right (in my opinion) but Rainbow Rowell gave me everything I needed and more.
The only gripe I had is minuscule compared to all the things I loved and that was that at some points the pacing was a little slow.
I will be recommending this to everyone I know who I think will enjoy it and I think it will be great to re-read in a year or so.