Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. Finished 2-7-18, 4.5/5 stars, fiction, 323 pages, pub. 2017
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. All this means that Eleanor has become a creature of habit (to say the least) and a bit of a loner.
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. from Goodreads
At first, Eleanor was not for me. She was weird, quirky, possibly on the spectrum (somewhat of a judgy trigger for me), emotionally absent, and friendless. I thought she was a unique voice so that was compelling, but it really wasn’t until Eleanor’s past started to reveal itself that I felt myself being drawn into her story. She is ridiculed at work, drinks too much on weekends, withstands weekly calls from her horrible mother, and somehow convinces herself that a rocker she sees on stage is her destiny. Poor, poor Eleanor. With the help of a few people she opens herself up to, Raymond the new IT guy and Sammy the man’s life she helped save, she comes to realize that she deserves more than she’s let herself believe.
What a treat this book was. The story reveals its secrets at just the right pace. Her struggles yanked at my heartstrings at the same time she made me laugh out loud. Her first stop to when deciding to prep herself for the love of her life, who she has never spoken to? A trip to the beauty shop for a Hollywood wax. I learn something new everyday.
We read this for my book group and we all really liked it. I was excited to find out that Reese Witherspoon has purchased the rights to Eleanor. I think it could be a fantastic movie.
A pic from my book group (I post these on Instagram if you want more book eye candy :))