My main issue was Eleanor's family dynamic. It's not that I didn't understand that circumstances like hers come around, sure I get it, but the way it played out in the book confused me. Her mother had sounded like a beautiful, strong woman and wonderful devoted mother in the flashbacks and suddenly was this frightened, submissive woman who was leaving her children in an absolutely terrible situation.
I found it hard to believe. Why would she leave her stable, beautiful home for Ritchie to live in a shack. I found it hard to believe that such a devoted mother would allow a practically strange man throw her first born child out of the house for standing up for her family.
Nothing about him sounded appealing and I find it hard to believe that the woman Eleanor described from the past, would find herself so desperate she would overlook everything horrible about him. Maybe I'm just overestimating humanity on this one. Since her whole family situation is a major dynamic of the book I found myself turning this confusion over and over again in my mind as the story played on.
Things I liked. The way Eleanor and Park fall in love. It's not instant, in fact, they don't even like each other at first. It's gradual and subtle and well, just downright adorable. The way their relationship grows and develops is far more realistic than most teen books we pick up off the shelf these days.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves teen romance, and real life stories.
-Isn't afraid to touch on real issues