Other reviews at The Book Babe's Reads.
Fun fact about me: an ending can just make or break a book for me. If it has a rocking ending, maybe my previous three star rating will go up, and if it has a crappy ending maybe my previous five star rating will go down. I'll give you three guesses as to what happened here.
If you didn't guess, the ending sort of broke this one for me. It still gets four stars, but because it's a work of genius and a romance between two NORMAL people. But the ending... as realistic as it was, that was a book thrower for me. Good thing that it's on my kindle, or I literally would've - I sort of gently tossed my kindle away.
I kind of started backwards here, to tell you the truth. Let's go back to the beginning. The first paragraph, the first sentence - they were like instant hooks. I wanted to know all about Eleanor and Park, and why Park is looking so hard for resemblances in other people. Lucky for me, we found out pretty sudden like. I loved how normal and lovable both Eleanor and Park were.
Eleanor could be a bit overbearing and brash at times, but it's just her personality - and it's very easy to get used to, because I know several people that Eleanor could literally be. It was easy to imagine her, because she was just so real! I also liked Park - he was like the cutest thing ever. Really. And he's so mushy adorbs - finally a sweet guy! (And chivalrous!) *hugs fictional character*
I also appreciated their family dynamics. It was really nice to see Eleanor and her mom go to the grocery store... I mean, that just made my day! Real, normal every day things! In a book! And the world didn't end! But Eleanor's stepfather is....gross. I really, really disliked him. Like, I would beat you badly disliked him.
Contrary-wise, both of Park's parents were great! His mom was a little iffy at first, but I grew to like her. Some of the things that she says are just too funny. And Park's dad was a pretty good guy, even if he is a little tough on Park.
Eleanor & Park together, though... the warm fuzzies. They were so cute, and I love love loved them together! They were kind of awkward sometimes, but it was still so cute. I do think that Park's confession of love was only because he was scared, though. He could've waited just a little bit longer before he threw it out there. (Oh, like that's a spoiler. You already knew that they were going to fall in love!)
All in all, Eleanor and Park would have been at LEAST a four point five for me, if the ending just hadn't killed it for me. I do want to read more by Rainbow Rowell, though!