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Romantic,
Insightful,
Fun

25 reviews

Eleanor & Park
by Rainbow Rowell

Published: 2013-02-26
Hardcover : 336 pages
31 members reading this now
76 clubs reading this now
20 members have read this book
Recommended to book clubs by 23 of 25 members

#1 New York Times Best Seller!

"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."-John Green, The New York Times Book Review

Bono met his wife in high school, Park says.
So did Jerry Lee ...

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Introduction

#1 New York Times Best Seller!

"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."-John Green, The New York Times Book Review

Bono met his wife in high school, Park says.
So did Jerry Lee Lewis, Eleanor answers.
I'm not kidding, he says.
You should be, she says, we're 16.
What about Romeo and Juliet?
Shallow, confused, then dead.
I love you, Park says.
Wherefore art thou, Eleanor answers.
I'm not kidding, he says.
You should be.

Set over the course of one school year in 1986, this is the story of two star-crossed misfits-smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try. When Eleanor meets Park, you'll remember your own first love-and just how hard it pulled you under.

A New York Times Best Seller!
A 2014 Michael L. Printz Honor Book for Excellence in Young Adult Literature
Eleanor & Park is the winner of the 2013 Boston Globe Horn Book Award for Best Fiction Book.
A Publishers Weekly Best Children's Book of 2013
A New York Times Book Review Notable Children's Book of 2013
A Kirkus Reviews Best Teen Book of 2013
An NPR Best Book of 2013

Editorial Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, March 2013: While Eleanor & Park is technically classified as YA lit and has a cutesy cover, don’t let the stigma of “books for teens” fool or deter you. It is written about teens, sure, but the themes are so universal that anyone who survived high school will relate to the lives of the two protagonists. Eleanor is the new girl in town and her wild red hair and patchwork outfits are not helping her blend in. She ends up sitting next to Park on the bus, whose tendencies towards comic books don’t jibe with the rest of his family’s love of sports. They sit in awkward silence every day until Park notices that Eleanor is reading his comics over his shoulder; he begins to slide them closer to her side of the seat and thus begins their love story. Their relationship grows gradually--making each other mixed tapes (it is 1986 after all) and discussing X-Men characters--until they both find themselves looking forward to the bus ride more than any other part of the day. Things aren’t easy: Eleanor is bullied at school and then goes home to a threatening family situation; Park’s parents do not approve of Eleanor’s awkward ways. Ultimately, though, this is a book about two people who just really, really like each other and who believe that they can overcome any obstacle standing in the way of their happiness. It’s a gem of a book. --Caley Anderson

Excerpt

1

park



XTC was no good for drowning out the morons at the back of the bus.

Park pressed his headphones into his ears.

Tomorrow he was going to bring Skinny Puppy or the Misfits. Or maybe he’d make a special bus tape with as much screaming and wailing on it as possible.

He could get back to New Wave in November, after he got his driver’s license. His parents had already said Park could have his mom’s Impala, and he’d been saving up for a new tape deck. Once he started driving to school, he could listen to whatever he wanted or nothing at all, and he’d get to sleep in an extra twenty minutes. ... view entire excerpt...

Discussion Questions

Suggested by Members

censorship discussion could be an issue with this book.
by MarthaL (see profile) 06/06/14

In 2014 would this love story be plausible?
Will Eleanor and Park wind up together in the future?
Which adults in he story behaved responsibly? Which did not? Explain
by thewanderingjew (see profile) 02/13/14

Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

The New York Times Book Review - John Green

"…I have never seen anything quite like Eleanor & Park. Rainbow Rowell's first novel for young adults is a beautiful, haunting love story…Its observational precision and richness make for very special reading…Evocative sensual descriptions are everywhere in this novel, but they always feel true to the characters…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."

Book Club Recommendations

Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
 
by jmanley (see profile) 08/25/19

 
by [email protected] (see profile) 05/06/19

not a big love story person. I didn’t like the ending AT ALL.

 
by tcrowl (see profile) 05/31/18

 
by jslaby (see profile) 01/09/18

 
by Books4Suzanne (see profile) 02/06/17

 
by amintcar (see profile) 01/26/17

 
by lyndafio (see profile) 10/21/16

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