“Eleanor Oliphant”: diversity, loneliness and hope

I’ve always loved reading, but sometimes the books I’ve had on my hand didn’t leave a deep marking inside of me. This isn’t certainly the case of the last one I read, “Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine“,  the debut novel by the Scottish Gail Honeyman, a little “literary sensation” that’s about to become a movie as well.

"Eleanor Oliphant in completely fine"

“Eleanor oliphant is completely fine”: the plot

Don’t worry: no spoiler! 🙂 I don’t mean to spoil your pleasure to enjoy this engaging and very well written novel. I’m just telling you something about the story of Eleanor, a character that you’ll hardly forget. Eleanor is an English young woman living an apparently “banal” life, between her job as an accountant at a graphic design the loneliness of her flat, with a plant as her only company. Eleanor is shy, not interested in being trendy, nor in socialize with her colleagues, who, after all, don’t do much to create a less than formal relationship with her. They see her as a “strange being”, due to her old-fashioned clothes, her sloppy appearance (marked by a scar spoiling her face, inheritance of the event that changed her life forever). Then, they make fun of her, isolating her and, at most, addressing her jokes and uncool nicknames. Nevertheless, as the novel’s title claims, she “is completely fine”. Or, at least, so she thinks, until, thanks to a series of events that I’m not unveiling, she’ll start to realize that there’s life beyond the borders of her routine and, gradually,  she’ll also learn to deal with her own spectres.

eleanor, “one of us”

” I’ve been the focus of far too much attention in my time. Pass me over, move along please, nothing to see here!”

I’ve found in this quote, one of my favourite ones in the novel, one of the traits that make me feel emotionally closer to Eleanor: indeed, like her, I’ve spent most of my life just longing for being invisible, not raising other people’s morbid curiosity. But, just like Eleanor, I’m gradually learning to make peace with myself, forgiving me for what I’m not guilty of and look at other people from a different perspective, not necessarily as potential “threats”, but also as “opportunities“, in every way.

So, here’s why I suggest you, shouldn’t you do it already, to read this wonderful novel: a breath of fresh air and a glimmer of hope for everyone. Since, in the end, there’s a little bit of Eleanor in everyone of us.

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