Over the past few months it has seemed that reviews of Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine have been just about everywhere in the book blogging world. I was stuck on a hold queue for the audiobook at the LA Library for well over a month before getting access to the book in August, shortly before my trip home to Milan. I had just finished Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall in audiobook, which was an absolutely engrossing and rewarding experience (listen to it rather than read it if you haven’t yet!), so my expectations with regards to audiobooks were extremely high.
If you’re traipsing around Milan eating gelato but keep finding yourself thinking back to that audiobook waiting for you at home at the end of the day, that’s a good sign. I avidly finished listening to Eleanor’s story in just a few days. Despite being a much simpler and shorter experience than the lengthy historical tome that preceded it, within a couple chapters, I was completely captivated by Eleanor. I would rank Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine up there as one of the best books I’ve read this year, and I think it would make my Top 100 of all time if I ever sat dawn to draw it up one day. I couldn’t believe it when I read that this is author Gail Honeyman’s debut novel! That’s truly astounding because her characters are so compelling, fully-formed and sympathetic. Sign me up to read anything else she may publish in the future.