We love a good book here at Silver Pink headquarters, and what better ways to express and discuss our good, bad and ugly reads through our very own book club.
Over the coming months we will be reading and reviewing our top picks of the season.
First up, a Costa Book Award Winner AND No.1 Sunday Times Bestseller
Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine
Gail Honeymoon is a prime example of an outstanding route to publication for aspiring writers. As an author motivated by turning 40, her debut novel propelled her into the limelight winning many prestigious literary awards and accolades. The novel has since sold 27 territories and was shortlisted for the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize amongst others.
The heroine in this novel is a sad, lonely, office oddball who has a treacherous family history and is scarred in many ways from the memory of her frightful mother. However sombre this might sound, the narrative leads a funny, witty, intelligent side of Eleanor’s personality and boasts the unusual quirks and hilarious moments of the fractured, slightly alcoholic life she leads.
Eleanor is on a journey of self-awareness, respect and discovery, of which there are two pivotal moments: one through coming to the assistance of a pensioner, and the other, a bond she finds she has with a work colleague that continues to surprise her throughout the journey. Her constant vice and necessity is her alcohol dependence, which manages to subdue her into oblivion to escape the trauma of her past.
She possesses a frugal, almost Victorian personality that has an air of snootiness and indulgence about her that is at odds with her character for much of the book. Her social awkwardness and inability to read people’s emotions is comic and sad, she speaks very literally and fails to understand even the most obvious of jokes yet has an encyclopaedia of knowledge at her disposal through her hobby of the cryptic crossword. Eleanor is a truth sayer who has blocked out the sad truths of her own life for such a long time that she is unable to comprehend it. The observational humour contrasts with the darker plot of trauma that enables this book hits the accessible literary sweet spot.
The human need for connection, initially scorned by Eleanor is the novel’s central theme which pulls on the heart strings. Eleanor Oliphant is definitely not completely fine, but she is one of the most thought provoking heroines of contemporary fiction. You can buy the book here .