Adult Fiction, Book reviews and recommendations

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

Author: Gail Honeyman

Genre: Adult Fiction

Reviewed by: Aoife Kerr, Leixlip Library


Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend.

Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything.

One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world that everyone else seems to take for granted – while searching for the courage to face the dark corners she’s avoided all her life.

Change can be good. Change can be bad. But surely any change is better than… fine?


Meet Eleanor Oliphant: she struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she’s thinking. Nothing is missing in her carefully timetabled life of avoiding unnecessary human contact, where weekends are punctuated by frozen pizza, vodka, and phone chats with Mummy. But everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond, the bumbling and deeply unhygienic IT guy from her office. When she and Raymond together save Sammy, an elderly gentleman who has fallen, the three rescue one another from the lives of isolation that they had been living. Ultimately, it is Raymond’s big heart that will help Eleanor find the way to repair her own profoundly damaged one. If she does, she’ll learn that she, too, is capable of finding friendship—and even love—after all. . . . the only way to survive is to open your heart.

I was so not expecting to like this book. There was so much hype about it, that I thought nope it’s never going to live up to it. Boy, was I wrong. It totally lives up to the hype. The only thing I was not prepared for was how heartbreaking this book was. There are parts of this book that make you want to give Eleanor a really big hug (though she would think you were being inappropriate). But as the book goes on, it becomes a really heart-warming book. I cannot recommend this book enough. If you read it, you will not regret it.

Available to borrow from Bolinda Borrowbox as an ebook here or to request from your local library here. Prefer to find it on the shelf in your local library book an appointment to come in and visit us.

We hope you enjoyed this review. Remember under the Government’s Keep Well Campaign – Switching off and being creative or learning something new, getting back to nature, and finding ways to relax can help our general wellbeing. For more information check out our blog posts here and here or take a look at the Kildare County Council’s Keep Well page for the latest activities to help you Keep Well.

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