“No one’s ever told Eleanor that life should be better than fine.” 

Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books
Release Date: May 9, 2017
Length: 336 pages

Phew – I’ve ploughed my way through some Net Galley reviews and now I can sit, guilt free, and focus on one of my Christmas presents – a signed copy of Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine by Gail Honeyman. What a treat this book was.

From the first few pages, I could see this becoming a movie. I wanted it to become a movie just so I could see it play out on the big screen. Honeyman is just incredible.

Quite a few people have questioned whether Eleanor is on the Autism Spectrum. It’s never directly confirmed in the book but I’ve seen a few reviews highlighting that Eleanor fits the descriptions completely. Eleanor fits lots of descriptions and diagnosis’s, many of us do. I believe her social situation and inability to understand social norms is not so much a spectrum diagnosis but more resulting from trauma, disjointed upbringing, mismatched parenting e.t.c. Indeed, some of Eleanor’s behaviours can be seen in many of the readers of this book – me included! I envied some of them as well, as they are often ways I want to behave but I know socially, that they wouldn’t be accepted. Eleanor is a bold, brave character, where other’s would shrink or hide away in the face of, frankly, work place bullying, Eleanor is unfazed.

I liked Eleanor, so much so that I was rooting for her throughout the whole book. I wanted Eleanor to win. Eleanor’s darkness and low moments were very carefully balanced with a touch of humour and sometimes just beautiful moments. Eleanor is one of the oddest characters I’ve ever read, but she’s also one of the truest. Between the weirdness and mishaps, she exhibits these moments of astute social commentary.

“No thank you,” I said. “I don’t want to accept a drink from you, because then I would be obliged to purchase one for you in return, and I’m afraid I’m simply not interested in spending two drinks’ worth of time with you.”

If we could all be a bit more ‘Eleanor’ then a lot of wasted time would be put to better use don’t you think.

“A woman who knew her own mind and scorned the conventions of polite society. We were going to get along just fine.”

For those who find some book topics to be a trigger, this book does touch on some harrowing subjects and I know that a few people have been upset about the lack of warning, or grateful when there is a review that mentions it.

If you liked this book then try…. A man called Ove and The Rosie Effect. And the best news?  Reese Witherspoon’s company Hello Sunshine has set up to produce Eleanor on the big screen….!


One response

Leave a Reply