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Eleanor by [Gurley, Jason]
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Eleanor Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 399 customer reviews

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Length: 450 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Jason Gurley will be a household name one day."
-Hugh Howey, New York Times bestselling author of Wool

"Ambitious, challenging... as original as A Wrinkle in Time."
-Michael Bunker, author of Pennsylvania

"Haunting... if you liked The Ocean at the End of the Lane, you'll love Eleanor."
-Peter Cawdron, author of Feedback

"Gurley's masterful prose is reminiscent of Neil Gaiman... enchanting, magical and powerful."
-Ernie Lindsey, USA Today bestselling author of Sara's Game

"Jason Gurley is the kind of storyteller that makes you excited to sit down and spend a day reading."
-Ted Kosmatka, author of Prophet of Bones

About the Author

Jason Gurley is the author of Greatfall, The Man Who Ended the World and the fiction collection Deep Breath Hold Tight, among other works. His stories have appeared in Lightspeed Magazine and the anthologies Loosed Upon the World and Help Fund My Robot Army!!! He was raised in Alaska and Texas, and now lives and writes in Portland, Oregon. Learn more about Jason and his books at www.jasongurley.com

Product Details

  • File Size: 4883 KB
  • Print Length: 450 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1499570732
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publication Date: June 27, 2014
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00K8IAZ68
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,888,522 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
There is a nasty little secret that each parent has, but thinks is theirs alone. The world wants us to believe that normal people never feel ambivalent about parenthood. That mixture of regret and joy, of resentment and overwhelming love. And above all the certainty that no matter how hard you try, you'll never be good enough. Or the terror that no amount of love will be able to cover your deficiencies. We don't talk about it. But Eleanor does.

Ostensibly, it's the story of a young girl who is overcoming grief. On the surface, Eleanor goes on a quest to heal her family. But underneath, it’s also a story about parental failure and growth. Eleanor is both the heroine and the grail. Through her parents and grandparents the story explores, in a blunt, honest way, the claustrophobia of marriage and parenting and just how powerful the idea of escaping from them can truly be. We sometimes fear we are giving up everything, even our very identities to remain a parent or a spouse. We are allowed to experience the imagined relief of leaving it all behind. Whether through divorce, death, addiction, or denial, the characters become unbound from each other, free.

But a child isn’t a house or a debt or a broken down car. And there are hidden prices to pay for abandoning Eleanor. The themes of inadequacy and abandonment run through the second half of the novel. As the loving actions of Eleanor work on those around her, freedom turns to regret, and then to guilt and resentment, then at last, into empathy and forgiveness.

The overarching message seems to be that we fail. Everyday. As parents, as spouses, as people. Sometimes we get pretty close to good enough. And other times we fail spectacularly.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Tragedy has a profound effect on any family. A decision made by a family member in the past reverberates throughout time, reshaping possibilities, closing doors that should have been left open and opening ones that should have never even existed. A young girl, struggling with these consequences, finds herself torn from reality by strange forces that will affect her life forever.

A mesmerising mix of surreal fantasy, science fiction and beautifully written drama, Eleanor is one of those rare moments in a reader's lifetime when they start to remember why they love reading so much. A story that grips from the first chapter and never lets go. Exquisitely-crafted characters and breathtaking imagery fuse effortlessly with an ambitious and original plot, bringing to life a story so captivating it refuses to be put down.

While dealing with darker themes such as suicide and addiction, Gurley's greatest strengh as a writer is the empathy he shares with his characters, a decidedly human touch, neither glamourising their decisions or preaching against them but allowing the characters and their actions to speak for themselves. Conventions of genre are refreshingly swept aside. Many will try to tie it down, to quantify it, to classify it, but this book defiantly refuses to be pigeonholed into some obscure sub-genre.

Fans of Jason Gurley's other work will be pleasantly surprised. This is Jason as you've never seen him before. As brilliant as his other work is, this is his most confident and accomplished book yet, and being the culmination of almost ten years work it rightfully demands an audience.

Bravo.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This novel certainly wasn't my cup of tea. On the other hand, it's one of the best-written novels I've read recently.

Pro: Mr. Gurley is a very good writer and I thoroughly enjoyed his prose style. I was never tempted to put this book aside, even though the plot never captured me. I may try one of Gurley's other books to see if 'Eleanor' was an outlier. His dialog writing is better than average and his characters are pretty well drawn.

I only wish he'd written a story I'd been interested in, which leads me to...

Con: The never-ending gloomy, rainy atmosphere plus the focus on lives and loves lost reminded me of David Allen Coe's final verse for the Perfect Country-Western Song (Goodman & Prine's 'You Never Even Call Me By My Name').

Well, I was drunk the day my mom got outta prison.
And I went to pick her up in the rain.
But before I could get to the station in my pickup truck
She got runned over by a damned old train.

Now, spread that over a couple of hundred pages and you'd have something similar to 'Eleanor', though not as well executed as 'Eleanor' was.

James Taylor once introduced a song this way: "Here's a song George Jones did. He did it so good it makes you weep. It makes your dog weep to hear this song. It makes your roof leak to hear this song."

And that's 'Eleanor' in a nutshell.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I was privileged to read not one but two beta drafts and I feel this has allowed me to see Eleanor grow both as a character and a book. This is Jason's masterpiece and with good reason, over a decade of work has gone into the book and it shows. Oddly Eleanor is one of those unlikely tomes which feels dreamlike and ethereal and yet cannot be easily classified, it's somewhere between sci fi and fantasy. That said it also exists in it's own exquisite niche, a kind of betwixt and between where magic exists and dreams are real.

Thanks to the third person present tense, the book has a lyrical quality to it and you're pulled along on a truly magical adventure which is definitely not for children. It's an adult's fairy tale but without the need for sex, violence and instead focuses on the magic, on the things which made all those stories you heard as a child so special. This is Eleanor's adventure and we're privileged to join along with her as she tries to save those closest to her as well as herself.

Seriously, you won't regret reading this book and it will change you. Eleanor is a work of art from the cover through to the final page and Jason Gurley is one of the rising stars of an indie revolution. This book alone will change how you think about self publishing and storytelling for all the right reasons.
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