Book Review: Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Format: Paperback

Pages: 383 pages

Published: May 9, 2017

Publisher: HarperCollins

Genre:  Fiction & Literature, Contemporary

Synopsis:

Eleanor Oliphant has learned how to survive – but not how to live. Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend. Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything. One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world that everyone else seems to take for granted – while searching for the courage to face the dark corners she’s avoided all her life. Change can be good. Change can be bad. But surely any change is better than. . . fine?


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Don’t let the title fool you…Eleanor Oliphant is not completely fine. Eleanor is perfectly content being in her safe bubble, with her same routine. She is perfectly happy living a life without any risks…that is until an accident occurs. And this event propels Eleanor to go down a road of self-discovery and heartbreaking  path that she realizes that she cannot outrun.

All books speak to me in some way or form but this book spoke in volumes, amazing volumes that I could shout from the rooftop. This novel was amazingly good and really pinpoint the reality of the times. I always complain about how contemporary books lack realism in their stories, which is why I don’t read much of them. But Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is one of the best contemporary books I have read in a long time. It was a funny (I found myself laughing out loud a couple of times) and heartbreaking novel that took you on an emotional rollercoaster. To most readers, Eleanor is not a likeable character at first. She dishes out blunt comments and her mind doesn’t work like most people. But as I read more, I found myself admiring Eleanor, yearning to learn more about her. Even after learning about her tragic past, my admiration for her continued to grow.

I applaud Honeyman’s approach on targeting topics that are in the spotlight right now but need to be discussed more. Its approach of the topics of loneliness and mental health  was spot on. Loneliness is a serious issue that needs to be discussed more, along with mental illness. It is not a book that lectures, but instead gives a chance for readers to be more aware. For some, mental illness is just not a fleeting moment. It is something that some people suffer with everyday. The more we talk about it, the better understanding we have of it.

I think the main reason why this book appealed to me so much because the emotional state and the anxiety Eleanor went through I saw in myself. I felt a very deep connection with Eleanor. All her emotions and pain she felt I had many times in my life. It was gut wrenching to read but seeing my emotions depicted in a story helped validate my feelings. It proved that I wasn’t alone in them and I believe that we need more of that support through literature.

One of the best contemporary novels I have read since Me Before YouEleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is a definite must read for 2018. This triumphant and emotional novel will have you giving it a standing ovation towards the end. Perfect fo fans of Jojo Moyes’ books.

Overall rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Get It At: Amazon |Barnes & Noble|Book Depository| Your local library

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