Do you remember how it feels when you fall in love? No warning. There wasn't even a sign that this person is the one who will soon be your whole world. Do you remember your first love?
If your answer is yes. Consider yourself lucky. Treasure the feeling, because is one of the most amazing feelings in the world. Treasure the memories because they will be with you forever and they will guide you through your whole life. They will shape your views for all the loves which will follow.
If the answer is no, then this book will bring your memories back on the surface. Or it will show you how great love can be and what are you actually supposed be looking for.
I must say I have never read anything by RAINBOW ROWELL before. I actually even didn't know that this book existed until two weeks ago. I was stuck at home, sick with a stomach bug, browsing through YouTube Channels of my favourite VLoggers. And one of them recommended this book. Actually, I think it was in a section of beautiful covers, when I discovered it. And since then, it's been playing on my mind. 'I MUST HAVE IT!' Was all I could think.
So I logged into my Amazon.com account, searched for it, found it, clicked on ORDER button, paid for it and got it shipped to my home. I was really excited. Reading reviews online made want to read it even more. They were all describing this book as one in a kind. Heart-warming love story which will leave you breathless. And after reading I must agree!
First impression: "The book cover is absolutely gorgeous!" It has a simple design. Two heads pictured from the back with headphones on, which are tangled together. It's illustrated. Stunning. Beautiful. The book cover says it all. You just want to have this novel in your personal library.
Inside: "Absolutely incredible story which captures you from the start!" Romantic. Smart. Funny. Charming. Heart-breaking. Achingly good. The loveliest story I've read in recent years, maybe even through my whole life....Sweet story about love which helped me find my lost hopes of true love and finding it. It's the food for my soul.
Eleanor is new in school. She isn't popular. She isn't the most beautiful girl. She is a chubby redhead wearing the craziest creations in the world. But there is more to her than meets the eye. She is smart. Funny. Beautiful inside and out.
Park. Korean kid who sits on the bus with his headphones and reads comic books. He doesn't know what to think about the new girl. She is not like other girls. That intrigues him.
Both misfits and geeks, they bond over love for comic books and music. They become friends. The fall in love. And this is their story.
Eleanor & Park is a story of first love. A Love which is so strong that you want it to last. Both of them are fully aware that first love almost never last. ..But they put a hell of a fight to make sure that theirs is an exemption.
I have fallen in love with this story. It's written a completely different way like others I've read. We can follow the story from Eleanor's and from Park's point of view. I love that Rainbow Rowell writes like she would be telling you the story. Sometimes she gets lost in a train of thoughts but that's what I adore about it the most. You have the feeling like you are a part of the story. Like you are their friend watching on the sidelines. Or maybe a person reading their journal. You can watch them slowly discovering what it actually means to be in love. The first steps.... first holding of hands, first kiss, first date, first phone call... And their relationship slowly matures into a wonderful once-in-a-lifetime love.
Not to mention the incredible music selection mentioned in this book : The Smiths, Joy Division, Cure, Beatles... The greatest bands in the world are creating the playlist for the background you simple need to listen to. Bands which always find a place on my iPod. Win-win-win.
You will laugh. You'll make noises like 'ooooh' 'That's so sweet.' People will look at you on the bus. And you will cry. It's heartbreakingly wonderful. And most of all : You will wish that somehow they will find a way to stay together. You will want their story to be different and find a well-deserved happiness. And at end it will make you want to have more of this tasteful, mouthwatering piece of modern literature.
I think I will borrow words of JOHN GREEN (New York Times Book critic):
" Eleanor & Park reminded me not just what it's like to be young and in love with a girl, but also what it's like to be young and in love with a book."
Couldn't say it better.
All I can say is:
" I have fallen in love with the characters, their story and the book itself. There isn't one bad thing I could say about this novel. It made me think about my first love and helped to realise that I haven't actually met my first love yet. Or at least not like the love described in this book. But I will search for it, because it is somewhere, out there in the world, waiting for me. In the meantime, I have a reminder written by Rainbow Rowell - Eleanor & Park - The sweetest, most loveliest, wonderful story I've ever read!"
This is the first time I am going to plead with you to buy a book because trust me this one is a real masterpiece.
Here are some of my favourite quotes from the book:
“I want everyone to meet you. You're my favorite person of all time.”
“Holding Eleanor's hand was like holding a butterfly. Or a heartbeat. Like holding something complete, and completely alive.”
“What are the chances you’d ever meet someone like that? he wondered. Someone you could love forever, someone who would forever love you back? And what did you do when that person was born half a world away? The math seemed impossible.”
“I don't like you, Park," she said, sounding for a second like she actually meant it. "I..." - her voice nearly disappeared - "think I live for you."
He closed his eyes and pressed his head back into his pillow.
"I don't think I even breathe when we're not together," she whispered. "Which means, when I see you on Monday morning, it's been like sixty hours since I've taken a breath. That's probably why I'm so crabby, and why I snap at you. All I do when we're apart is think about you, and all I do when we're together is panic. Because every second feels so important. And because I'm so out of control, I can't help myself. I'm not even mine anymore, I'm yours, and what if you decide that you don't want me? How could you want me like I want you?
He was quiet. He wanted everything she'd just said to be the last thing he heard. He wanted to fall asleep with 'I want you' in his ears.”
“I miss you, Eleanor. I want to be with you all the time. You’re the smartest girl I’ve ever met, and the funniest, and everything you do surprises me. And I wish I could say that those are the reasons I like you, because that would make me sound like a really evolved human being …‘But I think it’s got as much to do with your hair being red and your hands being soft … and the fact that you smell like homemade birthday cake”
“I just can’t believe that life would give us to each other,’ he said, ‘and then take it back.’
‘I can,’ she said. ‘Life’s a bastard.”
“..I love your name. I don't want to cheat myself out of a single syllable.”
“You saved me life, she tried to tell him. Not forever, not for good. Probably just temporarily. But you saved my life, and now I'm yours. The me that's me right now is yours. Always.”
“There was something about the music on that tape. It felt different. Like, it set her lungs and her stomach on edge. There was something exciting about it, and something nervous. It made Eleanor feel like everything, like the world, wasn't what she'd thought it was. And that was a good thing. That was the greatest thing.”