The audiobook was read by the marvelous Cathleen McCarron, who is an actress and voice & text coach with some 40 audiobooks to her credit. The story is set in Scotland and McCarron is a wizard with the characters’ accents and patterns of speech.
This is a debut novel for Honeyman. I hope, hope, hope she will get another published. I would jump on it because I just loved this book. It was recommended to me by the same friend who suggested I read The Weight of Ink, about which I previously posted. Isn’t it special to gab about a book you loved with the friend who recommended it to you?
Miss Eleanor Oliphant (when pressed for a name by the Starbucks cashier, to her puzzlement, she tells him if he must know her name, he should address her in this manner) is a thirty year old woman who, although she has a job as an accounts receivable clerk, lives much outside of society. Thus, she misses or misinterprets cues from other people, and she is quite blunt. The novel is in the first person, so we have the benefit of her inner thoughts; nonetheless, the reader is as taken aback by things she says and does as the other characters in the novel are. What?? There is much humor in this as well as moments when we think, “Well, she’s actually right about that.”
Oh so gradually, Eleanor’s backstory is revealed. There are surprising twists along the way and one very big revelation at the end. Didn’t see that coming! But the plot is not just backstory, Eleanor massively develops as a character and that is a wonderful ride. Have you seen the film, Babette’s Feast? (one of my favorites) That came to mind when I was listening to this book.
Read this if you can, friends!