No one’s ever told Eleanor that life should be better than fine.
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.
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.
Soon to be a major motion picture produced by Reese Witherspoon, Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine is the smart, warm, and uplifting story of an out-of-the-ordinary heroine whose deadpan weirdness and unconscious wit make for an irresistible journey as she realizes. . .
The only way to survive is to open your heart.
“I simply didn’t know how to make things better. I could not solve the puzzle of me.”
Beautiful and unpredictable, this book really spoke to me. Eleanor is quirky, unusual and even strange sometimes…everything in her life is orderly and predictable, just as she wants it. She keeps her distance from her co-workers and imagines a great romance with a famous musician she’s never even met. But she’s funny and bright and seeing the world through her eyes was pure joy.
Even the simplest of interactions puzzle Eleanor. She comes across as blunt and aloof but when her co-worker Raymond befriends her, her whole world opens up. Who could imagine that such simple acts as inviting a co-worler to lunch or texting a friend could actually brighten someone’s life? I read that the author got the idea for this book from reading about people who actually don’t see another human being from Friday night after work until Monday morning.
“When the silence and the aloneness press down and around me, crushing me, carving through me like ice, I need to speak aloud sometimes, if only for proof of life.”
Eleanor suffered terrible trauma as a child but the details are very slowly revealed over the course of the story. What I loved about the book is that despite her childhood, Eleanor is most definitely not a victim and is determined to move forward with her life.
The narrator Cathleen McCarron was simply outstanding. The story is set in Edinburgh and hearing each character’s voice really brought the book to life. Profoundly moving, touching and often funny, ‘Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine’ is a must-read and deserves ALL the praise.
“In the end, what matters is this: I survived.”