It was a bookish weekend for me two days ago, beginning with a one-night sleepover with my sister at my condo and ending with the last page of ‘Eleanor & Park‘. I have my comments about the book, which I will share in awhile. Before I went to bed, I placed my Paris bookmark into the first chapter of ‘Fangirl‘, the second title of my Rainbow Rowell Young Adult fiction book set.
When I closed the book on ‘Eleanor & Park’, I must be honest about how I felt about the story. I actually had mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, it was a sweet-sixteen love story blossoming between two awkward teenagers. It was a whole new world for Eleanor and Park who are both, more or less, sidelined by their classmates for being weird and different. Park’s life is relatively easier compared to Eleanor, whose female gym mates can be a real pain in the ass. Seriously. I felt sorry for her having to go through so much emotional distress, both in school and at home. She has a loving mother and in turn, she loves her siblings too. But her stepfather takes the cake in being the baddest bad-ass in the book! How her mother actually lives with him in the same house is beyond me!
Park has it easier in school and doesn’t have much to deal with at home either, although being the older son has its disadvantages too. A lover of punk rock, black clothing and eyeliner, Park’s dad probably has as much difficulties in understanding his son’s behaviour as the next dad in reality. Why couldn’t Park be more like Josh, his dad must be asking himself. Where did I go wrong, he must be wondering too. But while Park has a loving set of parents, it is even harder for Eleanor to swallow and digest it as she either has a hard time believing that parents can be loving or that she wishes she could have his parents instead of her own.
I would have preferred if Eleanor had moved in with Park instead. For her to leave home for good and move to someplace so far away that their relationship strains is such a harsh punishment, even for her as she wasn’t even the one to blame in her family’s ordeal. I doubt it would have made any difference either if Park did kill her stepfather. No offense to other E&P readers but the ending left me feeling rather hollow inside. It was a little anticlimactic. Everything had been building up from first chapter until the second last one, and then suddenly, with a whoosh of deflated air, it came down to nothing much.
Hmmm, I wonder what ‘Fangirl’ has in store for me then.