Monday, August 19, 2019

Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Title: Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine
Author: Gail Honeyman
Publisher: Penguin Books
Release Date: May 9, 2017 

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.

Soon to be a major motion picture produced by Reese Witherspoon, Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine is the smart, warm, and uplifting story of an out-of-the-ordinary heroine whose deadpan weirdness and unconscious wit make for an irresistible journey as she realizes. . . 

The only way to survive is to open your heart.

Eleanor Oliphant is nothing further from being fine!

I finally got a chance to read Eleanor Oliphant. I was worried about all the hype surrounding this novel and I kinda dreaded starting it because I didn't know if I was going to like it. 
I know now that all the hype is worth it. Eleanor is unique. She's different than anyone else I have ever read about. At first, it was hard to get into the story. I found Eleanor to be cold and unlikable. That changed quite fast. By the middle of the book, Eleanor had made me laugh and tear up too. 

So who's Eleanor?

Eleanor is a lonely woman living a very lonely existence. When she was a kid something happened which left Eleanor to grow up in the foster care system. As an adult, Eleanor is living in Glasgow.  She has been working for the same company for nine years. She doesn't have any friends or any family to speak off except for mommy whom she talks to every Wednesday. On her weekends, her routine includes staying in, eating frozen pizza, and drinking two bottles of Vodka. Her only company is a plant and her books. Then, a fortuitous event brings her close to a co-worker, Raymond, the IT guy. 

Raymond is very different from Eleanor.  He's jovial, friendly, dresses comfortably and the best part he doesn't seem to mind Eleanor's lack of social skills. If anything, he actually smooths things over when necessary but he doesn't think of her as weird or someone who needs to change. He accepts her the way she is. If anything, he just wants to support her as a friend. 

I can't believe this book was a debut novel for Gail Honeyman. Eleanor is an unforgettable character. Her bluntness, her grammar, her dry sense of humor made her so distinctive. 

Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine is a witty, funny, poignant and hopeful novel.
Cliffhanger: No

4/5 Fangs

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