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Eleanor & Park | [Rainbow Rowell]

Eleanor & Park

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.
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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Finalist, Teens, 2014

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.

©2013 Rainbow Rowell (P)2013 Listening Library

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (877 )
5 star
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4.3 (825 )
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4.5 (820 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    FanB14 Rockville, VA, United States 04-27-14
    FanB14 Rockville, VA, United States 04-27-14 Member Since 2011

    Short, Simple, No Spoilers

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    132
    122
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    6
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    Story
    "E + P 4-ever!"

    Finally, after wading through lots of simple, boring teen books, this little gem arrives. Without my Entertainment Weekly Bible, I wouldn't have discovered this fantastic teen love story, coming to a movie screen soon near you.

    Eleanor is back with her Mom, step-Dad and four siblings in a miserable household attending a new school in 1986, finding an unlikely friend in Park. Both points of view shine light on the loneliness, isolation, bullying, and the dare to hope and connect in the world of teenage angst. When Eleanor thinks she's fat, Park describes her as beautiful. Couldn't wait to hear what the other had to say about the same situation.

    This book is well-written, almost like Rowell popped the top on the teen brain with all the first, raw emotions spilling out into a funny, lugubrious, intense singular story line with the perfect ending. Just bought his newer book, "Fangirl" and am excited to see Rebecca Lowman is narrating as well. She and Sunil Malhotra were fantastic in "Eleanor and Park". This was an excellent read.

    42 of 45 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G. House Sr. Sherborn, MA, United States 04-14-14
    G. House Sr. Sherborn, MA, United States 04-14-14

    I am an avid listener. I listen between 75-100 hours per month on my iPhone: 60% fiction to 40% non-fiction.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1314
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    381
    158
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    2
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    Story
    "Pure Heartstrings -- A Great Story"

    This novel's plot was not what I was expecting -- but tuned out to be more than I could have hoped for. It is a fresh story, with a steady plot-line that you won't guess. There is something in this story for everyone. Rowell manages to tell this teen story without resorting to over dramatic devices. There is plenty of tension and conflict and the story raises as many why's as it offers answers. This book appeals to folks of all ages. It helps you remember first love, so it does appeal to the romantics in all of us.

    The story is told both form Eleanor's and Parks perspectives in alternating points of view which enhances the story. Often, this device can be distracting; but not in this novel. There are many nerves that get jangled as the story unfolds. I highly recommend you read this wonderful story.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Princess Taylor 05-21-14 Member Since 2013

    Lover of the magic of movies | Fan of risk takers and believers | Indulger in games and imagination | Reader of words that touch souls

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    9
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    "Hanging on every lyric, and every word."

    I loved this book. Such real characters, a realistic yet frightening thread weaving the plot together at the seam, a legitimate love story (involving high schoolers, who knew.) it was another "Perks of a Being a Wallflower" for me in that had that coming-of-age feel with the dark under note that I kept thinking I knew the history and the stakes but that made me feel it all the more when 'mostly' everything was reveled (because honestly, in real life, no one really knows what's going on with a person right in front of us unless they say the words.)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K. parkinson USA 07-11-14
    K. parkinson USA 07-11-14 Member Since 2009

    book addict

    HELPFUL VOTES
    31
    ratings
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    531
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    4
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    Story
    "Beautiful!"

    This book has terrible language! So if that is something that bothers you, you should skip this one. It starts out with Park seeing a girl with red hair and wondering if it's Eleanor. After finishing the book I'm glad the author put that part in because it hints that it might not end the way I wanted it to. I like how we get to see things from both Eleanor & Park's point of view. Both narraters did a great job. Park is such an amazing character! These two end up falling hard for eachother, but the love story that really got to me was the love between Park's mom and dad and in turn their love for Park. I feel like they really tried to accept Park's choices even if they didn't really understand them. I loved this book! And while it doesn't end exactly the way I wanted, I found the ending hopeful.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Calvin 07-22-14
    Calvin 07-22-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    5
    1
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    Story
    "Don't believe the hype"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    The book was decent. It was not as good as a john green book. Eleanor is whiny and difficult. Park made the romance worthwhile


    Would you recommend Eleanor & Park to your friends? Why or why not?

    No. This book was not worthwhile. There were some cute parts, but it was like a movie that's not worth seeing in theaters. If you have the book already, read it. Otherwise, keep shopping


    Have you listened to any of Rebecca Lowman and Sunil Malhotra ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    Do you think Eleanor & Park needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    absolutely not......unless its about park


    Any additional comments?

    this book is average at best. I would've reread the fault in our stars if I knew this book was just ok

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Judi Vancouver, BC, Canada 12-09-13
    Judi Vancouver, BC, Canada 12-09-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
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    28
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    "I am a fan of Rainbow Rowell"

    What a great book. These smart books for teens are really a treat. I am definitely not a teen but thoroughly enjoyed this listen. The quirky imperfect characters just have a way of drawing you in. Her writing just feels very real and ordinary in a good way. And Rebecca' Lowman is really a fantastic narrator.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Herbert Sacramento, CA 07-15-13
    M. Herbert Sacramento, CA 07-15-13 Member Since 2012

    bookluvrmindy

    HELPFUL VOTES
    76
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    23
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    "So much fun...LOVED LOVED LOVED IT!"
    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I cried A LOT!


    Any additional comments?

    After hearing from so many people who loved this book and after reading John Green’s awesome review of Eleanor & Park, I was really looking forward to reading this book.

    First of all, I am quite pissed off with the ending. There was something that I was waiting, and Waiting, and WAITING for that I thought would happen sometime throughout the entire book, and then something happens in the very end that only “implies” that this particular thing “might have” happened. BUT I wanted Rainbow Rowell to SPELL IT OUT!!!! I want to know what those three friggin’ words were on that dang post card. I have my hopes about what they mean but, based on this particular character, her actions are not always what you really expect or hope for.

    OK…I have a lot of emotions over this book. I think I was a little guarded through a lot of the book because I was constantly bracing myself for something awful to happen. And yes, something awful does happen and, even though I was trying to prepare myself for the worst, I didn’t think it would happen like that…so I was all thrown off. You want to know if I cried? Yep!!! I cried…a lot. But it was all worth it…and it would be even more worth it if Rainbow would actually tell us what’s on that post card. *sigh*

    What I loved most about this book is how well the characters were put together. First, there are Park’s totally hilarious parents who seem to be making out all the time in every corner of the book. And then there are the all-around horrific parents of Eleanor who make you want to climb right into the book and give Eleanor a giant hug. There’s also the change in Park’s personality from the beginning of the book to the end, and then there’s Eleanor who seems like she doesn’t care what people think about her on the outside but, on the inside, she’s ALL messed up. And last there are those characters that ended up surprising me at the end of the book! Loved it!

    This is a very quick read that takes you through a lot of emotions, but the best part is the very fun, intense romance that seems like it should be totally awkward, but is OH!!! SO PERFECT!

    10 of 17 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ashley Wichita, KS, United States 04-06-13
    Ashley Wichita, KS, United States 04-06-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    4
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    "Must Listen"
    If you could sum up Eleanor & Park in three words, what would they be?

    Charming, Funny, and Heartbreaking


    What does Rebecca Lowman and Sunil Malhotra bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Initially, I thought I wasn't going to like them. The story starts off subdued, but after an hour, I was in love with their narration. The dual narratives in this book are really great, as they let you get to know both Eleanor and Park, and the dual narrators really helped to emphasize the differences.

    Sunil Malhotra makes Park's parents so much more vibrant (I contend they are the best YA parents I've ever read). I didn't LOVE his version of Eleanor's voice, but it worked.

    Rebecca Lowman does an amazing Eleanor AND an amazing Park. I didn't LOVE her version of Park's mom, but again, it worked.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes. And I have listened to it twice, since.


    7 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lauren Chicago, IL, United States 07-31-13
    Lauren Chicago, IL, United States 07-31-13 Member Since 2011

    I guess I'm a baby...I just love to be read to.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    143
    ratings
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    57
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    22
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    "Good Book - Horrible Ending"

    I actually went to Barnes and Noble to look at the actual ending of this book to make sure there wasn't something wrong with audible download. Towards the end everything fell apart...large gaping holes in the story line and lots of questions unanswered and not in a good way. I loved everything about all of the characters and was so interested in what happened to them and it never pays off. The author goes right up to the edge of the cliff but never jumps off....ugh so frustrating.

    17 of 30 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CJC Calgary, Alberta Canada 09-02-14
    CJC Calgary, Alberta Canada 09-02-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    4
    4
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    0
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    "Excellent"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes! It is a nice break from normal YA Chick Lit - the characters were real and the story kept interested right till the end.


    Have you listened to any of Rebecca Lowman and Sunil Malhotra ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No but I would look for them - both did a fantastic job.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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