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  • A. Ireland King

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

***** It's the unique characterisation that makes Gail Honeyman's debut so distinctive. Eleanor Oliphant sees the world differently, and I love that Honeyman is able to skilfully show this using only Eleanor's point of view.


Eleanor lives alone - she avoids mixing with her peers and does everything by a strict routine. I fell in love with her character quickly - she's damaged and we want to know what happened to her. She's hilarious at times too, because of the way she misunderstands and misjudges things.


Eleanor falls in love with a musician she's never met and begins to obsess over this man. Meanwhile she barely notices the real man in her life, Raymond, who she seems to find quite disgusting at first! Together they help and befriend an elderly man, Sammy, who's fallen down in the street and so begins a heart-warming story featuring unlikely friendships and the contrast between real and imagined love.


Eleanor's journey from debilitating loneliness to tentative human contact and ultimately healing is so desperate and touching that I found myself in floods of tears at one point (no spoilers, though). Full disclosure - for those who don't know me I cry easily and often!