Monday, February 16, 2015

Being Young and in Love with Eleanor & Park

I realized that I had spent too much time reading and watching things that involve murders and psychotic people (which made my mom a little worried haha), so I decided to have something different this month. And since this month is February aka the month of love, I thought it would be great to read something... romantic. So I bought a novel called Eleanor & Park, written by Rainbow Rowell.

Eleanor & Park follows two teenagers whose names are in the title as they experience first love. Eleanor is an eccentric new girl at school who catches the attention of everyone at school, including Park, a Korean-American boy who sits next to her on the school bus. They unexpectedly fall so hard for each other despite the abuse, the insecurity, and the bullying that they experience as teenagers.

On the cover of my copy of the book, there is a quote from John Green's review that goes like this,
"Eleanor & Park reminded me not just what it's like to be young and in love with a girl, but also what it's like to be young and in love with a book."
Well, I agree with him. This book reminds me how it feels like to be young and in love.

Eleanor & Park makes me realize how old I am because it makes me recall the time when I was as young as its characters and realize that that time was a looong time ago. Eleanor and Park are sixteen in the book. I am turning twenty-three this year, which means that I was their age, like, seven years ago. Following Eleanor and Park's journey makes me realize how much I've grown since I was sixteen. I used to be like Eleanor and Park. Like those two characters, I used to be so insecure about myself, my abilities, my future, my physical appearance. Like those two characters, I used to believe that love is true when you can be with the person that you love forever. But now things are different; the way I see things are different. I'm sure things are also different for Eleanor and Park when they are older. After that open ending, I can imagine how they learn to accept themselves for who they really are, to be grateful for everything they have, and to love selflessly without wanting to keep the ones that they love for themselves. 

Eleanor & Park also makes me fall in love. This book made me want to smile all the time, until my cheeks hurt. It made me giggle like teenage girls when they talk about their crushes. It made me want to sing and dance with strangers and birds on my way to my office like Joseph Gordon-Levitt in 500 Days of Summer. It made feel like there were butterflies in my stomach. I was crazy in love when I was reading this book, just like Eleanor and Park.

My dream cast for the movie haha. Ki Hong Lee as Park and Hailee Steinfeld as Eleanor.

I heard there will be a movie adaptation of Eleanor & Park  soon and I'm excited about it. I still can't decide who should play Eleanor because, when I think of her, I always picture Merida from the animated movie Brave in my head hahaha. Probably because of the crazy red hair thing. Someone suggests Hailee Steinfeld and I love her, so I think I'll support that suggestion. For Park, I really want Ki Hong Lee from The Maze Runner to play him. He just fits the role perfectly! I also imagine Cate Blanchett as Eleanor's mom and Yunjin Kim as Park's mom.

Rating : 4/5

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