Books and Jams Readalong discussion

Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine
97 views
Eleanor Oliphant - May 2018 > Chapters 1-10

Comments Showing 1-30 of 30 (30 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
I'm so excited to start this book!

After reading the first 10 chapters how are you feeling? Are you enjoying the writing style? How is it similar or different from other books you've read? How do you like Eleanor? Do you relate to her in any specific ways? Are there any quotes or passages that have stood out to you?


Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
I've read just the first two chapters and already I can tell I'm going to love this book. I love that Eleanor is a bit awkward, but also sarcastic too (or at least thinks she's being sarcastic).


Berna | 64 comments I just finished Chapter 10 and I am loving this book.
It gives me all the emotions, such a sweet and heartbreaking story at the same time.
The writing style is really good, it flows really easily.
After reading the last two chapters, I feel really sorry for Eleanor, she is a character desperately in need of being loved. I really wonder about her incident with her mother. That seems to be the main reason of her "fine state"
I think my favorite parts in the book, is her fantasies about her musician crush. Although it is sad, I cannot help but smile at her naïve views about love. I think she reads too many romance books :)
I am so glad you chose this book Krista ;)


Elsa The first 10 chapters have been very readable. I find myself relating to Eleanor in small ways. I too dislike small talk and sometimes have trouble expressing myself verbally in a relatable way.

I wonder why Raymond is interested in her. Is he just trying to be nice to an office outsider? Or is something more going on? It's cute the way he blushes when Eleanor talks about fate and romance. Eleanor seems to be gaining some insight in Chapter 10, the way she notices the ugliness of her shoes and the warmth she feels from helping out Raymond's mother and Sammy. I wonder what will happen if she meets the singer.


Sarah In the beginning I could see where Eleanor’s coworkers could feel she was a bit too much. I think we all know what it’s like to be in awkward situations, she just doesn’t recognize them as such.

I hope she doesn’t meet the singer, because she is already vulnerable enough. I don’t want him to break her heart too!


Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
Berna wrote: "I just finished Chapter 10 and I am loving this book.
It gives me all the emotions, such a sweet and heartbreaking story at the same time.
The writing style is really good, it flows really easily...."


I agree that the writing style flows really easily. I love the pacing and love Eleanor. I am super curious about what happened in her past. I know there was a fire and either a little brother/sister or other child was hinted at at one point. Her mom seems like a real piece of work.

I also love Eleanor's naive crush on the singer. There was one part where she was talking about her scars and even the scars on her heart and was wondering if there was a small part that was still capable of loving and being loved. So heartbreaking.


Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
Elsa wrote: "The first 10 chapters have been very readable. I find myself relating to Eleanor in small ways. I too dislike small talk and sometimes have trouble expressing myself verbally in a relatable way.

..."


I wonder about Raymond too. I like the friendship that is blossoming and also think it's cute that he gets awkward when she mentions being interested in someone.

She has been so isolated for so long. I love how Raymond has helped her come out of her shell a bit and she has seen benefits in thinking about others and showing kindness.


Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
Sarah wrote: "In the beginning I could see where Eleanor’s coworkers could feel she was a bit too much. I think we all know what it’s like to be in awkward situations, she just doesn’t recognize them as such.

..."


Oh man, I'm nervous about what she's going to do to rush things along with the singer.


Brenda | 5 comments I'm a few chapters along. I'll have to reserve my opinion until I read a little more. I don't love it so far.


Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
Brenda wrote: "I'm a few chapters along. I'll have to reserve my opinion until I read a little more. I don't love it so far."

I am curious why you think you aren't loving it so far. I can't wait to see if your opinion changes too!


message 11: by Theresa (new) - added it

Theresa | 57 comments I went into this book not knowing too much about it, just that everyone loved it and it was funny. Well, after the first chapter I was cracking up with laughter. The next two or three chapters I was kind of bored and a little disappointed. Now, I am putting things together and am seeing a little into her past life and it has my full attention again. I can't wait to read on.


Bgoofy | 3 comments I just finished chapter 10. I wasn't liking the book at first but as it went along things are starting to come together. I am interested to see were this goes. I think her coworker might have a crush on her. I also am interested in Eleanor's past. it sounds really sad.


Brenda | 5 comments Krista wrote: "Brenda wrote: "I'm a few chapters along. I'll have to reserve my opinion until I read a little more. I don't love it so far."

I am curious why you think you aren't loving it so far. I can't wait t..."

I am having trouble connecting with Eleanor. If I don't like a character, it's hard for me to like the book. She seems unrealistic. She went to university, has a job where she interacts with people, and lives on her own. At the same time, she is completely clueless about the world. I understand social awkwardness, she goes beyond that.


message 14: by Tanya (new) - added it

Tanya Bee (tanyabeebooks) | 9 comments Brenda wrote: "Krista wrote: "Brenda wrote: "I'm a few chapters along. I'll have to reserve my opinion until I read a little more. I don't love it so far."

I am curious why you think you aren't loving it so far...."


I'm having a similar experience, Brenda. I'm doing my best to be patient and have compassion for her as I learn more about what she's been through, but I'm finding some of her reactions / responses / behaviours extreme to the point of unbelievable.

Also, I find the interactions she has with other people, particularly the conversations with her mother, are what deepen my compassion for Eleanor the most. Experiencing what she's had to deal with is much more impactful for me than being constantly reminded of how much of an outsider she is through her internal monologue.


Brenda | 5 comments Tanya, I agree that her reactions, etc. are often unbelievable and that is my main problem with this book. She doesn't seem to exhibit signs of being on the autism spectrum, so I don't see how she is so disconnected. I understand that she had many misfortunes, but I don't think that explains it. It's a huge flaw in this book for me.


Nicole (girlygirlbookworm) | 7 comments I have to agree with those who aren't connecting with Eleanor! I found myself getting really annoyed with her in the beginning. Now that her backstory is slowly being revealed I kind of understand her a little better. Some of her cluelessness was driving me crazy like the scene with the waxing and how she wanted to make tea for the pizza delivery guy. She seems so secluded in her own world and has no understanding of the real world. I'm hoping it'll continue to piece it all together more as I continue reading.


message 17: by Tanya (new) - added it

Tanya Bee (tanyabeebooks) | 9 comments Brenda wrote: "Tanya, I agree that her reactions, etc. are often unbelievable and that is my main problem with this book. She doesn't seem to exhibit signs of being on the autism spectrum, so I don't see how she ..."

Brenda, I'm not sure I'm going to make it. I'm trying to be patient and compassionate -- like Raymond ;) -- but I don't think I've rolled my eyes this much since I was a teenager.

I'll be the first to admit that I know next to nothing about Autisum, but if Eleanor was intended to be written as a character on the spectrum, then I guess I wish Honeyman had been more open about that from the start.


message 18: by Theresa (new) - added it

Theresa | 57 comments Tanya wrote: "Brenda wrote: "Tanya, I agree that her reactions, etc. are often unbelievable and that is my main problem with this book. She doesn't seem to exhibit signs of being on the autism spectrum, so I don..."


I have not finished the book yet so I am unsure what the author intended with this character or the story. But even though I thought at times it was a little slow I am now looking at it in a real life kind of setting. Have you ever met someone and labeled them right away? Did you think they were lazy or weird. Then you got to know them better and realize that they weren't at all like you thought. This is how I am looking at Eleanor. I am realizing that she must have been through something horrible to make her this way. Think of the news and some of these stories where children are locked in a closet for years. When they get out they don't know how to use silverware to eat or how to have a "normal" conversation with someone. I am on chapter 17 and am looking forward to hearing Eleanor's story.


message 19: by Tanya (new) - added it

Tanya Bee (tanyabeebooks) | 9 comments Theresa wrote: "Tanya wrote: "Brenda wrote: "Tanya, I agree that her reactions, etc. are often unbelievable and that is my main problem with this book. She doesn't seem to exhibit signs of being on the autism spec..."

I absolutely hear where you're coming from, Theresa. Not only have I held judgements like that about others, but I've been on the receiving end of them more often than I would like to admit, which is why I haven't given up on the book (or Eleanor) yet.

I'm hopeful that the more I learn about her, the more I will understand why she is the way she is, and at the same time, I'm struggling to fathom how what she went through could leave her capable of making it through university and holding down a steady job, while not knowing what air quotes are.

There's an inconsistency in her behaviour that I'm struggling to understand, which makes it difficult for me to believe she could be someone I could encounter in a real life setting.


message 20: by Theresa (new) - added it

Theresa | 57 comments Tanya wrote: "Theresa wrote: "Tanya wrote: "Brenda wrote: "Tanya, I agree that her reactions, etc. are often unbelievable and that is my main problem with this book. She doesn't seem to exhibit signs of being on..."

Yes, I have also been on both ends.

Please don't give up. I am looking forward to hearing your thoughts at the end.


message 21: by Tanya (new) - added it

Tanya Bee (tanyabeebooks) | 9 comments Theresa wrote: "Tanya wrote: "Theresa wrote: "Tanya wrote: "Brenda wrote: "Tanya, I agree that her reactions, etc. are often unbelievable and that is my main problem with this book. She doesn't seem to exhibit sig..."

Thanks, Theresa! I'll be excited to hear what you think too!


Terri  (tee_reads) | 57 comments I have finished the first 10 chapters and am enjoying it very much. I absolutely believe that abuse, be it emotional, physical or sexual, can do irreparable damage to a person. Eleanor was obviously abused by both a boyfriend and her evil mother. Add to that the fact that she was in and out of foster homes growing up and has had no close friends for her entire life. Yes, she made it through university and holds down a job but it sounds like she has never had any social interaction with people beyond the necessary. Try to put yourself in her place. You grow up with no real family. The two people that should love you the most abuse you instead. Your face is disfigured and you have a skin problem. The people you see every day openly make fun of you. You go home alone every day of your life and you drink your weekend away. Yeah, I can see why she is little (or a whole lot) odd. I'm rooting for her to overcome all her "disorders" and triumph in the end.


message 23: by Kim (new) - added it

Kim Lopez I was wondering do you guys think Eleanor was stalking the musician?


Nicole (girlygirlbookworm) | 7 comments Kim wrote: "I was wondering do you guys think Eleanor was stalking the musician?"

It definitely felt like it at times.


Berna | 64 comments I think she was not stalking him all the time but for some incidents she was definitely stalking him.


Adriane (Ordinary Reader) (ordinaryreader) | 3 comments I’m a little late to the party, but I think I can finish this in the next few days. I’m listening to it as audiobook.

It took me a minute to get into it, mostly because I had no idea what it was about/. But by the time I got to chapter ten I was in love with Eleanor, Raymond and Sam.

I’m curious to see what happened with her and her mother, and to see how Elenor’s friendship with Raymond and Sam blooms. Such a sweet, awkward woman.

This is definitely a character driven book, so it’s a good thing the characters are so lovable.


Tracy Van Alphen | 2 comments Interesting. I know someone with Aspergers, who has many similar behaviours as Eleanor, and the same kind of quirkiness. I like Eleanor, and I love Raymond for making the effort with her. I imagine that not many people bother.


Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
Berna wrote: "I think she was not stalking him all the time but for some incidents she was definitely stalking him."

I'm so intrigued by this stalking idea. I did not think that AT ALL while I was reading it!


Krista (booksandjams) | 746 comments Mod
Tracy wrote: "Interesting. I know someone with Aspergers, who has many similar behaviours as Eleanor, and the same kind of quirkiness. I like Eleanor, and I love Raymond for making the effort with her. I imagine..."

I thought she definitely seemed similar to people I know who have Aspergers.

And yes, Raymond was such a great friend!


Kristen | 10 comments Just finished chapter 10. I do like the flow of the book, but I find my mind wandering a bit. I am mostly interested in her past, the fire, and how she got to where she is. Interesting that Sammy and Raymond's mother appear to be her parental figures so far in the book. Curious to see how her relationships with them pan out.


back to top