My rating: 5 of 5 stars
No one’s ever told Eleanor that life should be better than fine.
Meet Eleanor Oliphant: She struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she’s thinking. Nothing is missing in her carefully timetabled life of avoiding social interactions, where weekends are punctuated by frozen pizza, vodka, and phone chats with Mummy.
But everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond, the bumbling and deeply unhygienic IT guy from her office. When she and Raymond together save Sammy, an elderly gentleman who has fallen on the sidewalk, the three become the kinds of friends who rescue one another from the lives of isolation they have each been living. And it is Raymond’s big heart that will ultimately help Eleanor find the way to repair her own profoundly damaged one.
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is a wonderful book. I need some more time to process my thoughts and feelings towards the sheer complexity that is the character that is Eleanor. Gail Honeyman pulled me into the narrative so quickly and I managed to finish the entire book in one day. I am left with a hollow feeling in my chest that is neither warmth or sadness. It has made me question a lot of things and I love it when books do that. This book reminds me a little of The Shock Of The Fall by Nathan Filer in the way that it is structured.
My initial thoughts when picking this book up is that it had won awards and was the book of the month in Waterstones. I was attracted to the cover and every time I have gone into a bookshop since I say to myself I need to read it. I am so mad at myself for not picking this book up sooner and it has made me fall in love with the complexity of Adult literature all over again.
While reading this book I fell in and out of love with the character of Eleanor but I could not bring myself to put the book down. The fact that this book is not a romance where Eleanor needs a man to fill her life (even though from the outset it seems like that) is truly heartwarming.
Overall this is one of my favourite books of the year and is one that I will reccomend to everyone. I feel so many emotions and it is mostly contentedness from the end of the novel. However, there are pangs of sympathy and anger toward the plot and the sheer trauma that is within this book. It is a literary masterpiece. It is modern which I love and it is not trying to be something that it’s not.