Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Review & Giveaway - Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

After reading/inhaling Attachments by Rainbow Rowell, which I loved, I had very high expectations for the author's upcoming young adult release Eleanor & Park; and, sure enough, I was far from disappointed.  Rowell has a special talent for putting realistic and seemingly ordinary characters in a new light where they can shine and grow without changing who they really are or what they stand for.

Eleanor & Park is a first love story.  It takes you back to a time when you feel awkward and insecure and weighed down by the pressure to fit in.  There are some underlying issues that play a role in the story, but mostly it's about love and acceptance.  

I loved the title characters.  They were written perfectly.  Every flaw, every thought.  All their likes and dislikes.  The humiliations and triumphs.  I was in high school all over again.  Eleanor and Park are both very likable and relatable characters.  They're not perfect, but they're so real.  It's always refreshing to find characters who aren't the most popular or are conventionally beautiful.  They got seated together on the bus on Eleanor's first day of school, and while that first "meeting" was awful, they were eventually drawn towards one another and formed a special bond.  I can't give up too many details without spoiling the whole story, but there were so many scenes that I fell in love with.  Comic books, mixed tapes, makeovers.  I thought the contrast between their parents and home lives was substantial and gave depth to their relationship and to the characters themselves.  I also loved how Eleanor/Park would see herself/himself in a certain way, but through the opposite character's eyes, she/he looked completely different/better.  It reminds me of that song in Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella: "Do I love you because you're beautiful?  Or are you beautiful, because I love you?" I love that song, by the way.

After finishing Eleanor & Park, I am now thoroughly convinced that anything Rainbow Rowell writes will be golden.  She is definitely an author whose works I will be following.  Love love loved!!!

5 out of 5 Stars
Review by Mary Munar

Side note from Jenn: OMFG I LOVED this book. I keep refreshing Rainbow's website for more tidbits. Fortunately, she has another book coming out and wow, if I am not geeking over it. It's called FaNGIRL and it comes out Fall 2013. Add it to your goodreads.  This is one author you're going to want to follow. Fan for life, I need more!! 

Add Eleanor & Park on Goodreads.  

Author: Rainbow Rowell - follow her on Twitter.
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release Date: February 26, 2013
Series: Standalone
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 320

Pre-order Eleanor & Park

When you finish reading E&P, make sure you check out Rainbow Rowell's website for some really cool stuff. For now, here's a YOUTUBE video of "Love Will Tear Us Apart" by Joy Division.

Ok, so we LOVED E&P so much that we want give one of you lucky readers a chance to win a copy of this book! Thanks and good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Hello,

    Could you tell me please if this giveaway is international?

    Thank you!

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  3. Paula Abdul's Rush Rush! Cheesy early 90's teenage romance!

  4. Can't wait to read what must be an amazing book by the amazing Rainbow!

  5. Sister Hazel's Come Around. So much turbulent passion at sixteen!

  6. I can't wait to read this book! I've enjoyed reading Rainbow's work for years in the newspaper!!!

  7. I can't wait to read Eleanor and Park!

  8. I read "Attachments" and loved it! Looking forward to reading "Eleanor & Park" when it comes out here.

  9. Your review makes me want to read the book even more than I already do. I lived in the same general neighborhood as Rainbow during high school and anticipate the story taking me back to high school daze.

  10. Color me stupid, but I hadn't realized yet that this was a YA book. Now even more excited about it, because I've got a reader grandgirl, who is always on the hunt for great stories. Sharing between generations rocks!

  11. Would love to read Rainbow's new book, as I've always been a fan of her columns in the Omaha World Herald.

  12. rainbow rowell is far and away one of the best and most entertaining and completely awesome authors on the planet. seriously, not an exaggeration - she is amazing! can't wait for the new book!!!

  13. A Heart Full Of Love from Les Miz. lol, that boyfriend turned out to be gay. From well over a decade ago. Amuses me to think of now.


  14. I JUST finished this book. It's so wonderful. I love the Cinderalla lyrics you pulled =) So perfect for this. Great review Mary!

  15. Great review :) I haven't read the book yet but think I definitely will now! :)


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