Author: Gail Honeyman
This book is something I am glad I picked up for the Popsugar prompt 25 – A debut novel. It is not usually a genre or premise I would usually read. But I chose it through recommendations.
Eleanor Oliphant is an adult who is generally considered a social misfit. She lives alone, has a job and there is a routine for everything in her life. She doesn’t socialise. Her mother is the only person in her life she speaks to regularly. One day, she sees a musician at his band performance whom she decides is her soul mate and plans to meet him, fall in love and get married to him. Also she is introduced to a colleague, Raymond who is friendly and doesn’t see the flaws in Eleanor. The remaining story tells why Eleanor is the way she is and did her plan to covet the musician work.
The entire book is single character centric and we see a character arc in Eleanor that happens by the people she meets. You don’t see a sudden twist and turn until you know her back story. I did feel a hint of mockery on all the questions on the norms, decorum and code we follow on social behaviour. Sometimes we don’t ask questions where we need to and hide behind etiquette.
The character does grow on you as you read. Eleanor is sometimes aware of her shortcomings but she doesn’t let that bother her.
The read is a smooth ride with the ebbs and flows of laughs and grief. It can be heart-warming and heartbreaking at the same time.
This one definitely goes into my list of good reads for the year.
Verdict: Highly recommended in contemporary fiction with odd characters are odd and a warm story.