Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine

Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine

Book - 2017
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"Meet Eleanor Oliphant: she struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she's thinking. That, combined with her unusual appearance (scarred cheek, tendency to wear the same clothes year in, year out), means that Eleanor has become a creature of habit (to say the least) and a bit of a loner. 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 kind of friends who rescue each other 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"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, New York : Pamela Dorman Books/Viking, [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2017
Branch Call Number: FICTION HON
Characteristics: 327 pages ; 24 cm
ISBN: 9780735220683
0735220689

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h21488687
Sep 04, 2019

This is one of those books where you're torn between rushing to find out what happens to the characters, yet also wanting to read slowly because you don't want it to end. It's been quite a while since I've enjoyed a book so much.

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OP_2
Aug 26, 2019

Tea & Talk Book Club / March 2019

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sloanelCPL
Aug 25, 2019

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is a remarkable debut novel – how does Honeyman know so much about psychology? A bit Rosie Project meets A man Called Ove at the beginning, but it deepened nicely. One puzzle: Why are social workers still visiting Eleanor when she is 30 yo? That aside, though, I was impressed at how psychologically sound this conceptualization is: “Raymond looked horrified. “Come on, Eleanor, that’s a terrible thing to say,” he said, visibly shocked. “No one’s mother would be happy to know their child was suffering.” I shrugged, and kept my eyes focused on the floor. “You haven’t met Mummy.” I said.” A novel that is full of respect for diversity and hope for positive change through connections with others.

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Girlmom9d3
Aug 23, 2019

Let me start by saying, when you start this book, do not immediately give up on it. Between the stilted language and the immediately irritated narrator I almost put the book back down free the first chapter. Needless to say, I am so glad I didn't. I promise, Honeyman has a method to her madness. This book was so unique and left me guessing til the very end.

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LauraSteinert
Aug 06, 2019

My second time through. The first time I really struggled with it because the voice of the narrator is so "off." Beautifully done. I just couldn't put it down, so it was a fairly quick read. It is very hard not to identify with Eleanor, at least at times. Loneliness in the midst of a crowd, past beating her down, messages from her mother during childhood still tormenting her, and yet she manages to hold on and keep moving through life. Okay, a joyless lonely life, but its a life. I dare you to read it and not cry once.

sjpl_rebekah Aug 02, 2019

I can safely say that in my long illustrious career as a bookworm, I have never read a book quite like this one. When I first started reading it, I was not sure how I felt about the first person style, but by the end of the first couple chapters I was hooked. This author has an incredible way of revealing so much of the story through subtext. It is clear that the narrator does not understand when she is making a social faux pas, yet the reader is acutely aware of her blunder. There is some argument among readers about whether this lack of awareness is attributed to undiagnosed Autism Spectrum Disorder or internalized trauma. I think both explanations are plausible, and perhaps it is a mixture of both. I think part of the brilliance of the writing is that Eleanor is clearly an unreliable narrator, and yet so much can be gleaned about Eleanor’s motivators by reading between the lines. I was perfectly happy to bumble along with Eleanor, who’s actions and reactions to situations were both cringey and oddly relatable. The full extent of Eleanor’s trauma is not revealed until the end of the book, but the real value is in watching Eleanor’s personality slowly unfurl past her carefully constructed barriers. This book demonstrates the power of unconditional love and the importance of relationships, both of which Eleanor sadly lacked in her life up until this point. I found Eleanor’s character to be charming in her own way, and sometimes her inner monologue made me laugh out loud. She is extremely intelligent and her perception of the world is unique and unencumbered by social norms. All in all, I loved this book and I think it is well deserving of the attention it has garnered.

RomanceAddict Jul 24, 2019

Review excerpt: "With 4.6 stars on Amazon, 4.3 stars on GoodReads, and numerous awards, I went into this book with high expectations. Specifically, I began this book expecting to laugh. Reese Witherspoon herself told me that it was “beautifully written and incredibly funny”. Instead I got something very different from it. I don’t think I laughed once, not even a little bit, with the notable exception of the glorious relationship between Eleanor and her cat, Glen."

https://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/reviews/guest-review-eleanor-oliphant-is-completely-fine-by-gail-honeyman/

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booksmile
Jul 22, 2019

I was expecting a sympathetic socially-awkrward lead character, but instead I only made it through a chapter or two because she was just mean and snobby and lacking any empathy.

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maipenrai
Jul 19, 2019

Eleanor Oliphant is not completely fine. This novel is an excellent description of the gradual revelation of repressed memories and how abused humans find ways to reproduce abuse to master it or because they know nothing different. Recommend. Kristi & Abby Tabby

IndyPL_CarriG Jul 16, 2019

Darker than it looks but still often laugh out loud funny, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine brings us a rare protagonist - a truly awkward and unapologetically socially inept female main character. She is not cute in her awkwardness, Eleanor Oliphant is no manic pixie dream girl. Those of us who had an unconventional upbringing and have wondered what to do in social situations when it seems like everyone else already knows the conventions will sympathize with her struggles. The novel is a lot like a coming-of-age story for someone who had such extreme trauma that they don't come-of-age until their thirties.
The one criticism I have is Raymond - he's a bit too good to be true. But it is fiction, and he is nice and sweet, and I want to believe that there are people out there who would be that kind to a strange, rude, and scarred co-worker.

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finfry
Oct 29, 2018

pg 300 .... was wearing a strange, oversized woolen hat that I hadn't seen before. It looked like the kind of hat that a German goblin might wear in an illustration from a nineteenth-century fairy tale, possibly one about a baker who was unkind to children and got his comeuppance via an elfin horde, ......

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cknightkc
Dec 10, 2017

“There are days when I feel so lightly connected to the earth that the threads that tether me to the planet are gossamer thin, spun sugar. A strong gust of wind could dislodge me completely, and I’d lift off and blow away, like one of those seeds in a dandelion clock. The threads tighten slightly from Monday to Friday.”

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cknightkc
Dec 10, 2017

“All the studies show that people tend to take a partner who is roughly as attractive as they are; like attracts like, that is the norm.”

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behere
Nov 27, 2017

p 134: Some people, weak people, fear solitude. What they fail to understand is that there's something very liberating about it; once you realize that you don't need anyone, you can take care of yourself.

cals_readers Sep 21, 2017

These days, lonliness is the new cancer -- a shameful, embarassing thing, brought upon yourself in some obscure way.

cals_readers Sep 21, 2017

O know, I know how ridiculous this is, how pathetic; but on some days, the very darkest days, knowing that the plant would die if I didn't water it was the only thing that forced me up out of bed.

cals_readers Sep 21, 2017

It's both good and bad, how humans can learn to tolerate pretty much anything, if they have to.

cals_readers Sep 21, 2017

I did not own any Tupperware. I could go to a department store to purchase some. That seemed to be the sort of thing that a woman of my age and social circumstances might do. Exciting!

cals_readers Sep 21, 2017

You can't have too much dog in a book.

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Mya614
Oct 15, 2018

Mya614 thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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SPL_Brittany Nov 05, 2017

Meet Eleanor Oliphant. A socially awkward 29-year old who works in the finance department as a clerk in a small graphics firm in Scotland. She is literal to a fault and tends to say exactly what she’s thinking. She is completely unfazed by office gossip, and takes comfort in avoiding social interactions. Eleanor lives alone and spends her weekends eating frozen pizza, drinking vodka and making calls to Mummy. According to Eleanor, she is completely fine, thank you very much!

Except maybe she isn’t.

Everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond the new IT guy. Together they come to the aid of Sammy – an older man who they witness collapse in the street. The three become friends who rescue one another from the isolation each of them has been living. With the help of the two men, Eleanor begins to experience her world for the first time with a fresh perspective, and she slowly begins to come out of her shell as they help her to confront the terrible secrets of her past that she has fastidiously kept hidden away.

Debut author Gail Honeyman writes a heartwarming, funny and poignant novel that despite its light-hearted tone does not shy away from its more serious issues. It is a story written with depth, originality and well-developed characters. Readers will enjoy getting to know and rooting for Eleanor, as she navigates a world that was once familiar to her, which has become entirely new. This novel is perfect for those who’ve previously enjoyed titles such as “The Rosie Project” and “A Man Called Ove”.

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