#TTBC February book was my pick, and I’m very glad I picked this book.
I joined with 2 of my best friends, BookMeUpScotty , and TheOstrichPen to create a book club this year. #TheTravellingBookCub #TTBC – How it works is one person picks a book for the month, reads it, makes notes, and send it to the other to read, so on.
#SPOILERS #SPOILERS #SPOILERS #SPOILERS #SPOILERS
⇒ Trigger warning . This book does mention psychical abuse, child abuse and suicide.
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‘Eleanor Oliphant is COMPLETELY FINE’ by Gail Honeyman is a contemporary adult fiction book. I don’t think I ever picked up an adult book by choice before, and this book has definitely inspired me to give adult books more of a try, reading out of your comfort zone can definitely pay off.
Eleanor’s life has a routine, and after her routine is broken by an unfortunate accident she meets people she would never would have meet before, and actually makes friends. Eleanor learns more about herself and why she is the way she is, and that she’s not FINE, but she will be.
I struggled to get into this book at first, the first 50 pages was rough, I even got the audio-book to help me. At first I thought it was just me hating to have to read something. TBRs don’t work for me because being ‘forced’ to read something puts me off it, it happened all the time to me in school. However after we all read it, I found that it wasn’t just me. Those first 50 pages were hard for us three, but after we got through that we all loved the book.
Eleanor was very off putting, and that’s the main reason that the girls and I had a hard time with the first few pages of this book. Though, as I said, we got used to Eleanor, and started to understand her better, and I ended up loving her.
This book is mainly about Eleanor’s childhood trauma and depression. She’s 30 years old and she’s only now learning; remembering, more about the trauma she went through as child. Her mother set the house on fire, killing herself and her youngest daughter, Marianne, leaving Eleanor as the only survivor. Eleanor blocked this from her memory, which is very understandable.
Half way though the book I guessed that Eleanor had a sister, and that she was dead, So, it was no surprise when she remembered her, though it was heartbreaking. I cried…a lot. Anyway, what was very surprising to me was the mother, I never thought that Eleanor was actually talking to her dead mother.
‘Mummy’ was absolutely horrible to Eleanor and I should have known there was something wrong there. She was just so toxic, and just plain nasty. I’m kind of glad that she’s not alive, but it was a little creepy that she wasn’t. I loved the serial killer references in this book, it really fit with twist of her talking to her dead mother.
This book is heavily about depression and it shows a very in-depth version of it. This is one of the reasons that I’m very glad I chose and read this book for the book club. In a way it helped me see my own depression in a different light. It helped me see that I have been using crutches, similarly to how Eleanor did, I turn to books and food instead of alcohol like Eleanor does, thank god I was never a big drinker, because from this book we can see how easy it is to fall down that rabbit hole and not even realize it.
When she first meet Raymond, I really wanted him to be a love interest. She was stalking the musician that she ‘choose’ was the one. From the beginning I felt that nothing would happen with that, because it just felt to that it was a very childish crush. Anyway, after we got to know Eleanor more, and we saw signs of her trauma and depression, I was just glad that he was her friend. Elenaor also became friends with Sammy, Laura and even her boss Bob. thanks to meeting all these new people, and to her therapy, she became more open to the people around her, and it was very nice to see her not be so alone after so long.
The blurb sort of sold this book to me as a romance, and I bought into that and looked for it as I read, but I’m very glad that it didn’t happen, the stalking of the musician doesn’t count at all. Eleanor only needed a friend, and she found one in Raymond. He saved her life by being there for her, specially when she attempted suicide and he saw her through that, and convinced her to get help.
This book is labeled as a romance novel, but to me this book was all about friendship. Eleanor and Raymond’s friendship made me feel like I should be trying harder with my own, I think we all take our friendships for granted in our daily lives, and it’s when we see people in situations like this that we see how much our friends mean to us.
Being a romantic, I think from the last few pages of this book felt that Eleanor and Raymond could actually have a romantic relationship in the future. There were definitely some light flirting there, at least from Raymond, and it just made hopeful that they might have a romantic happy ending. Eleanor was much better at the end of the book, thanks to therapy, so I think if she carried on with it, which I think she would, she could get to the point where she would be comfortable to have a romantic relationship with someone.
The Pick for March is ‘The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue’ by Mackenzi Lee
Want to know what my friends had to say about this book? Check out their YouTube channels:
Want to read with us? Go ahead. Invite a friend, and pass around the book. It’s all in fun.