Skip to main content

Weekly Reviews and Recommendations: Week 8

So this week I only have one book for you. I told you I'd be busy! Luckily, it is also an amazing book that would definitely get a feature article if I had managed to read more books this week. Even though I'm 85% finished with Always and Forever, Lara Jean, I'm going to go ahead and post for this week.  I hope you guys all read Eleanor and Park and love it as much as I did!

Happy (almost) summer!!

Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell
Overview: Okay, I guess I'm a little late to this party, but I'm glad I finally got here. This book is the story of two teens who don't quite fit in in small town Omaha, Nebraska. Park is Korean-American, a lover of music, and only dodges the attacks of the popular kids because he went out with their leader in the sixth grade. Eleanor is a bit overweight, covered in freckles, and has flowing, curly, red hair. She also dresses in jeans and oversized shirts, wears bangles on her wrists, and ties trinkets in her hair. When Eleanor gets thrown into the bus seat with Park, it is only the start of something sweet and beautiful. But all good things cannot last, especially when Eleanor has to combat her abusive stepfather and meddling siblings at home. This is a sweet story with a bittersweet end that any contemporary YA fan is sure to love. Overall: 5

Characters: 5 Rowell did a great job of capturing teens and their thoughts and emotions. She has also presented diverse characters that just about everyone can see themselves in in a beautiful and unassuming way where the facts just are and are not given excessive attention. Park is short and quiet which causes tension with his military man father. Rowell shows the readers his firmness in really finding himself and not giving in to others as well as his father learning to accept that. Eleanor has to deal with bullies at school who attack her for her hair and her weight as well as her abusive stepfather and abused mother and siblings at home. These issues also cause Eleanor to question why anyone would want someone like her after being called an ugly screw up her whole life.
The supporting cast also complements the narrative well and brings the story to life.

Plot: 5 Boy meets girl. Girl tries to hide her problems. Boy tries to help. The story is a simple one. It is life and the ups and downs of it, but similar to We Are Okay by Nina LaCour, Rowell makes the simple things so moving and complex. It is a remarkable talent.

Writing: 5 (Unfortunately there isn't a higher number) I'm blown away by what Rowell has done with this story of Eleanor and Park. Written in third person personal with many switches between Eleanor and Park even within chapters, the author executes a feat that many fail to twist to her advantage. The varied lengths of the two points of view helped set the mood, and even through third person, it helped familiarize the reader with the characters.


Popular posts from this blog

Spotlight Review: All Out Of Pretty

All Out Of Pretty by Ingrid Palmer (April 3)
Overview: Palmer tells the story of Andrea "Bones" and her mother as they deal with the terrifying world of drug dealing and domestic abuse. Andrea is the child Ayla, her mother, never wanted. Until her Gram's death, she'd barely spent any time with Ayla. But after Andrea finds Gram lying dead on the kitchen floor, she's sucked into Ayla's world bouncing from town to town as Ayla squanders the little money they have left. Andrea tries to use school and her status as an honors student as a bright spot in her life, though even that is threatened by their turbulent, migrant lives. Until they settle in with Judd who's worse than any scary motel. While Ayla is too drug dependent to work to break the cycle of abuse Judd inflicts on them, Andrea must formulate a plan for their escape before it's too late. Can she get them out of danger while hiding their life from prying onlookers. Overall: 5 

Characters: 5 I though…

Upcoming Spotlight Reviews

Hello, everyone! I haven't done one of these update posts about the month ahead or what's going on with the blog in a while, so I thought I'd take a minute today to share a bit about what's coming up. There are so many amazing things, but, first, I wanted to thank all of you for helping grow the blog. It means so much to me that I am reaching my largest audience yet. Remember to click the subscribe button on the main page to get email updates about new posts and to follow on Instagram (@readingwritingandme), Twitter (@readwriteandme), and Facebook which I'll link below!
One of the major things I'm focusing on going forward is giving you guys three amazing posts per week. Sundays will always be for Weekly Reviews and Recommendations while Wednesdays and Fridays will feature different reviews and articles. With Teen Book Con coming up, I'll be running a special series of reviews for all the books whose wonderful authors I get to meet!
And, of course, there a…

New Release: America Panda

America Panda by Gloria Chao (306 pages)
Overview: Mei is starting MIT a year early, skipping senior year, pushed forward by her parents who always demanded she push herself past extremes. They've also dictated that she's at MIT to become a doctor and that she will marry Eugene. Mei doesn't know how to cope with her parents rigid views and traditions that come from their Chinese culture. She doesn't feel like she can belong anywhere due to the conflicting expectations, and she knows she must sort out her feelings if she ever wants to be happy. Overall: 4.5

Characters: 5 I loved Mei. I related to her so much. We both need glasses (and don't wear them often), have a thing with avoiding germs, and are graduating early (something I never thought I'd see in a book). Watching Mei struggle between what she wants to do and what her parents want her to do. It's amazing to see how the college experience and the people around her help her sort out her feelings and carry…