Eleanor & Park Rainbow Rowell

Author Bio

The author of Eleanor & Park is Rainbow Rowell. She was born on February 24, 1973 in Omaha, NE. Rainbow is 43 years old. She is mostly known for her books, Eleanor and Park, Fan girl, Attachments, and more. Before Rainbow Rowell wrote and published her books, she worked as a columnist and ad copywriter. All of her books fit into the contemporary genre, and have all been a huge success as they have been read by millions of people all over the world.

Genre, theme, setting

The genre is Contemporary and the setting is in Omaha, Nebraska in the year 1986. Most of the story takes place on a bus, where Eleanor and Park meet for the first time. They start sitting together every day and do simple, mundane things, but eventually they begin to fall in love. Hence, the tale of a cute love story.

Plot summary

Eleanor and Park is about two teenagers around the age of sixteen years old. A heavy set, red haired girl, and a half Chinese boy. They meet on a school bus, where everyone makes fun of Eleanor because of how she looks and dresses. When she has nowhere to sit, she sits by Park, who immediately resents her. They begin to sit together every day, without speaking a word to one another. Park often reads comics and Eleanor discreetly reads them also. After some time, they start to like and talk to each other. That's when they discover how similar their interests really are. They show each other new things, and without even realizing it, they slowly start to fall in love. While they both have problems in their home and problems with everything else, the bus is their happy place where they look forward to seeing each other. They always have the other, and to them, that's all that matters.


Eleanor is a girl with family issues. Her stepfather hates her, and he is very controlling of Eleanor and her family. He doesn't let Eleanor do much of anything, and wishes her no happiness, which is why Park is Eleanor's little secret. Her stepfather is both physically and verbally abusing to Eleanor and her 3 younger siblings. Her mother doesn't get much of a say in anything, because everyone is too afraid to step up to Eleanor's stepfather. Her biological father hardly even cares about his kids, because he has a fiancé and soon to be stepson that he's more worried about. As far as Eleanor and her siblings are concerned, her father could just not exist and it would hardly make a difference.

Park is a boy who doesn't have a very good relationship with his dad, and his mom isn't exactly the nicest person in the world, but compared to Eleanor and the other kids on his bus, his life is quite fine. He spends every day looking forward to when he can see Eleanor again, and he spends practically every moment thinking about her.


The main conflict in the book is when Eleanor's stepfather beats and yells at her mother, and Eleanor and her siblings huddle together for comfort so they aren't as scared. Pretty much anytime Eleanor's stepfather is involved, there is conflict.

Book evaluation

I enjoyed this book, because I think it's cute. Eleanor and Park have a relationship unlike any other couple, and despite their differences and problems, they manage to look past that and just be content with each other. I think it's a book anyone would like, especially if you are a teenager looking for a sweet Young Adult romance.

Vocabulary words

Prerogative- A right meant for a specific class or person.

Grimace- Unflattering facial expression. Usually expresses dislike or pain.

Unfailingly- Not failing at something.

Alcove- A tiny room or place

Scoundrel- Someone that is not honorable

Book quotes

"She never looked nice. She looked like art, and art wasn't supposed to look nice. It was supposed to make you feel something."

"You're the kind of person I want to be with when I want to be alone."

"You act like there are two kinds of girls. The smart ones, and the ones that boys like."

"Saturdays were the worst."

"I don't like you, Park. Sometimes I think I live for you."

Sources for Vocabulary words and Quotes






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