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Publisher's Summary

Costa First Novel Book Award winner 2017 - The Sunday Times best seller - AudioFile Magazine Earphones Award Winner

Soon to be a major motion picture produced by Reese Witherspoon.

Eleanor Oliphant has learned how to survive - but not how to live.

Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend.

Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything.

One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world that everyone else seems to take for granted - while searching for the courage to face the dark corners she's avoided all her life.

Change can be good. Change can be bad. But surely any change is better than...fine?

This audiobook contains an exclusive interview with author Gail Honeyman and narrator Cathleen McCarron.

©2017 Gail Honeyman; Extract of The Lonely City (2016) by Olivia Laing reproduced by permission from Canongate Books Ltd. (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"A truly original literary creation: funny, touching and unpredictable. Her journey out of the shadows is expertly woven and absolutely gripping." (Jojo Moyes)
"Deft, compassionate and moving." (Paula McLain)
"I adored it. Skilled, perceptive, Eleanor's world will feel familiar to you from the very first page. An outstanding debut!" (Joanna Cannon)

What listeners say about Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine

Average Customer Ratings
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    4 out of 5 stars
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A complicated yet endearing character of Eleanor!

The book is a wonderful entry into the life of Eleanor who is traumatized by her life experiences but has developed a complicated mechanism to deal with it. Eleanor's journey from the life where she is living in her own shell, in posibble denial, to the life where she just has started to accept facts of her own life is depicted really well. This story begins a bit slowly without much context so felt had to push through first few chapters for things to fall in place. But all in all a great read.

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Witty, funny & Deeply touching. Fabulous narration

Very good story narrated to perfection. Must listen! Looking forward to the next book already!

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Funny and touching

Eleanor is a character one cannot forget in a hurry. She seems odd in the beginning but you'll come to root for her and to love her too. A beautiful tale of what can happen when you let some light in. It's very moving - about dark and serious matters but never gets too heavy to go on. It has its funny moments too - and each character, however small, makes a mark, they're so unique and life like. It's a compelling read, you won't be able to stop once you start. 5/5 for me. Can't believe it's a debute book! The narration by Cathleen McCarron was spot on too. Really enjoyed the tenors of the various characters.

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loved it

looked forward to listening to it every day...narrator is brilliant...character is inspired and unique

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Fun, deep, dark and hugely satisfying

loved it, I couldn't wait to find out more. so much so simply put was satisfying.

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Brilliant

The author builds up the narrative beautifully but it is the narrator who has done a brilliant job bringing out Eleanor so naturally

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Good and Abrupt , rolled in together

The book started out as a good, almost funny read. A socially awkward woman living a lonely life. I expected the story to be a hilarious one where she comes out as a beautiful swan at the end of it. It is very different though. she started her swan makeover very early, and the transition was smooth and believable. but what really makes the base of the story is the person inside her. why are people the way they are and what role do parents play is articulated very well here. the story unravelled slowly like an onion with layers, but it was all predictable (or maybe the author wanted it to be). however for me, the book ended very abruptly. I wanted more to know about her life. that also shows that I was so into the story that I didn't want it to end. Also, once you switch on audible and keep the phone aside, you can't judge how far you are in the book, and if it suddenly ends, leaves you feeling empty. The performance by the narrator was very good, I would like to hear her more. It wasn't your typical happy go lucky kind of book, but it wasn't bad either.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 13-03-18

Amazing story

Would you listen to Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine again? Why?

Loved it. Well written, the character creation is amazing. Really well read and an inspiring story. Highly recommend.

7 people found this helpful

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  • MISS LAURA K HARRINGTON
  • 27-03-18

I’ll miss Eleanor

This book is one of the books that you’ll carry with you for a long time. It’s funny, dark, sad and heartwarming. The characters are incredible and the voiceover is perfect. I’m now waiting not so patiently for Gail to write her next book!

6 people found this helpful

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  • Debbie Todd
  • 24-02-18

Most enjoyable

I loved this story about Eleanors triumph over adversity. Very poignant and funny at the same time.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Dymps
  • 22-02-18

A must read!!!

Excellent- the pace of the story unfolding, the plot, the humour, the treatment of serious issues, the character development, the narration!!! One of the best, if not the best book I’ve read in a while!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 24-01-18

A new favorite!

Any additional comments?

I loved this book with my whole heart. Maybe because in many ways I identifield with Eleanor Oliphant. I understood her and empathized with her. Yes, she made me cringe a little from time to time, but she was an extraordinary well-written character with an amazing journey of self-actualization. This was a triumphant debut by Gail Honeyman and I can't wait to see what she writes next.

2 people found this helpful

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  • SheenaB
  • 09-09-17

Funny and tragic

What made the experience of listening to Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine the most enjoyable?

The narrator skilfully carries the story without over characterisation. The story is carried with a lightness and humour that is so hard to deliver when that story is filled with human pain and suffering.

What does Cathleen McCarron bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Maybe the warmth of the characters. The slight accent emphasised the context.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Both! Lots of laughs, lots of warmth and compassion.

Any additional comments?

Loved this story. A rare find.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Aliza Yael Raz Melzer
  • 26-08-17

Candid, shocking, mesmerizing.

Beautifully written and beautifully narrated. A story that refuses to go away, unfolding carefully and gently, optimistic despite the horror.


2 people found this helpful

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  • Anja Hennie Halmøy Fredriksen
  • 08-08-17

Good read!

I liked the story and I liked the performance of the reader very much! I would recommend it for summer reading :-)

2 people found this helpful

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  • Rachel Maritz
  • 20-06-19

Praises not exagerated

So much has been said about this book and it has been praised by so many. None of the praises have been exaggerated. The book exceeded all my expectations. It is both refreshingly light and at the same time deeply moving. The author’s timing of events and thoughts are absolutely perfect. She created beautiful characters that the reader falls in live with. The journey with Eleanor seems to be over too soon. Also: The narrator was the best ever!! Beautiful voice and wonderful articulation.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mary Jose
  • 02-03-18

loved it

loved it. quirky, funny and deeply moving. flawed but real characters that as a reader i loved.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Katherine
  • 12-07-17

Amazing. Touching. Complete

I loved this book- it's really out of my normal genre (crime drama) this is a wonderful, complete story of a woman on her journey of recovering from childhood trauma.
The characters are excellent, voices brilliant. I could not put this down. You'll be so pleased you listened to this.

32 people found this helpful

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  • Kaggy
  • 30-06-17

Viva Eleanor!

This is a great debut novel from a mature author and which goes to prove that it is never too late to start your writing career. Eleanor is a character we could all probably recognise. She is the office misfit who shows no interest in joining in with the general gossip and chitchat and whose appearance is functional rather than attractive. Like many similar people she has disappeared into the background and is only noticed when she retaliates after being mocked. Despite her isolation Eleanor is no shrinking violet and we quickly learn from her excessive weekend drinking habits that there is something seriously wrong in her life.
This is the story of Eleanor’s reawakening and from it we learn the importance of human interaction which is the food and drink of everybody’s soul. The development of Eleanor’s relationship with the office nice guy /slob is a joyous awakening to the possibility of a better life. This is a splendid story filled with laughter and love but also the damage that one evil person can wreak on innocent people.
At times it is a difficult listen and the excellent narrator delivers some very hard emotional punches but it all adds up into a tale of hope and a lesson to make us value our friends, colleagues and the whole darned world (including the cats).

157 people found this helpful

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  • Ann D
  • 30-07-17

Wonderful book, superb narration!

This is one of the best books I have read/listened to. It is beautifully written, with a light touch (no underestimating the reader here) exploring many difficult issues for a women with a traumatic childhood history. In addition to understandable psychological problems, the main protagonist also has mild aspergers syndrome. All of the characters are extremely well drawn, and I loved many of them. Despite the subject matter, it is not always intense (though at appropriate times, it is). There are warm and lovely moments, laugh out loud moments and moments that may move you to tears. Not a single word is wasted here.

In addition, the narration for the audiobook may be the best I have heard. I have several favourite narrators who are always engaging and faultless. McCarron brings something more though. Her ability with accents and in varying voices is at such a high standard as to be remarkable. I keenly look forward to more by this author and I will probably try audiobooks that I might not otherwise when narrated by McCarron.

Highly recommended.

138 people found this helpful

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  • Caroline Mitchell
  • 10-07-17

Puts Bridget Jones in the shade

What made the experience of listening to Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine the most enjoyable?

Firstly may I say that I don't often read feel good type novels. Stephen King is more my forte. But every now and again I'll see a book cover that catches my eye, or wonder if the latest 'big book' really is worth all the hype. I actually listened to this novel via audio book, and from the moment I heard the narrator's gorgeous Scottish accent, I was completely drawn in.
This is no Bridget Jones. Eleanor puts her in the shade. She's a totally unique character, a one of a kind who you can't help but feel empathy for. We've all felt alone at some point in our lives, haven't we? The subject matter has been written so beautifully, you can't fail to be moved. I was also pleasantly surprised by the numbers of twists and turns this book took. I loved the relationship between Eleanor and her mother, which took me completely by surprise. As for her interaction with the rest of the characters... I won't spoil the story but suffice to say I smiled so many times at the touching and heartfelt moments portrayed in this book. It made me laugh, it almost made me cry, no mean feat for this cynical ex copper, believe me.
This is one of my favourite books of the year. Prepare to be moved.

24 people found this helpful

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  • jenny wren
  • 27-06-17

Deliciously original quirky story about loneliness

Loved this book! Beautifully written story dealing with loneliness and the effects of tragedy in childhood. Optimistic, sensitive, emotionally congruent - and with literary depth. The reader makes the book sing.

47 people found this helpful

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  • Donna Mac
  • 18-07-17

Wonderful audiobook

This is a fabulous audiobook which I cannot recommend highly enough. The writing is spot-on. Eleanor is superbly brought to life in the most painstaking and heart wrenching way. Seeing her reborn, almost, is really special. Loved all the other characters too, especially Raymond and his mum. All the small details are what make this book special and bring it to life.
I hope the author has another book out very soon.
The narrator was brilliant too. This is the best book I have listened to on Audible.

42 people found this helpful

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  • jo
  • 24-05-17

grows on you

it started off a bit slow but it turned out to be a very lovely book indeed

31 people found this helpful

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  • Graham. Cox
  • 06-07-17

A wonderful book the best I have read for ages

Would you listen to Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine again? Why?

I would certainly listen to the book again. The book is so heart warming, it has everything from loads of humour to the depths of pathos. Well measured and flows like silk.

What about Cathleen McCarron’s performance did you like?

This narrator is brilliant, she moves from character to character effortlessly. Its hard to believe that it is the same narrator speaking as she moves effortlessly through the various accents. If I could give this narrator 10 stars I would.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Eleanor's inability to fathom social nuances creates some wonderful humour, at the same time you feel you want to help her find her way.

Any additional comments?

This is not just a woman's book. My wife's friend loved the book and I downloaded it and thoroughly enjoyed it. My wife listened later on my ipod and felt the same way. This is a must buy.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Oakover
  • 14-07-17

Brilliant!

Just brilliant. The story is gripping and the narration is excellent. One of those books you just don't want to end. I rationed myself! I'd recommend this to anyone. Good luck Eleanor Oliphant!

28 people found this helpful

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  • opinion
  • 15-02-18

Beautiful and charming book

This is where the content of the book, and the reader, just come together beautifully. I was totally enthralled, and the book holds you right to the end. The book has a lovely beat to the story...like the waves of the sea, bringing in different parts of a harrowing story, giving you time to think about it, before being engulfed with another wave of information. Beautiful.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Bec
  • 29-10-17

So much better than completely fine

What a wonderful book and performance. I loved everything about the flawed Eleanor; sad, blunt and completely hilarious. A beautiful account of the power of friendship and healing, and our ability as humans to recover from trauma. Coupled with a sensational narrator I can’t recommend this highly enough.

24 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 19-09-17

Sweet, dramatic & beautifully read

Loved this book & didn't want it to end. For anyone who has experiences of those who live with ASD, you'll be sure to be entertained.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-06-18

Honestly, buy this book

I feel like this is one of those books that I will think about for the rest of my life. I've never read a book that has made me so passionately grateful for the things I've got in life, and simultaneously want to reach out to everyone I know and make sure they're okay. Eleanor and Raymond have changed me forever. Oh, and the narration is 10/10 as well. I cannot fault this audiobook.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-08-17

Utterly charming

A wonderful and captivating read. Witty, melancholy, and completely uplifting.

I could listen again & again!

6 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Kira Juerges
  • 13-11-18

Just okay (disappointed)

I had heard a lot of good things about this book, but found it a little disappointing. The idea behind the story is great! Unfortunately it seems to drag on and on, without much happening for the first half of the book. It is split into three parts. "Good days", "Bad days", and "Better days". The good days are mostly boring and I had to force myself to continue. The bad days came as a rather confusing twist that made me feel like a chapter had been missed. The last part of the book has one huge plot twist that made up for a lot of the rest. The narrator was okay. I haven't listened to any other books she narrated and I guess this one is not the posterchild for a narrator. The main characters point of view storyline didn't leave much room for the narration to be 'exiting' as such. All in all - this book is okay...

5 people found this helpful

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  • Zoe Smith
  • 16-04-18

Not what I first thought.

I listened to this book knowing nothing. At first I thought it was a typical 30yr old chick lit story. But as I got into it I realised it was so much more than that. A powerful and thought provoking story. A wonderful experience.

4 people found this helpful

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  • K. Chong
  • 31-08-17

Compelling story and performance

If you liked the Rosie Project you'll love this book, which has a troubled female protagonist who you immediately empathise with.

The performance is stunning. Cathleen McCarron's reading is nuanced and subtle and she brings all the characters to life in a very realistic manner.

Easily one of the best audiobooks I've experience.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 16-09-17

Incredible

Impossible to put down... perfectly narrated... you'll get completely lost in the characters of this book,.. heart swelling, laughing and breaking as it all unfolds... 5 stars!!!

7 people found this helpful

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  • Jean
  • 25-07-17

Brilliant

Enjoyed from the very beginning
To the final chapter .
Narrator was so perfect , best book this year so far

5 people found this helpful

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  • Jodie from Perth WA
  • 01-06-17

Captivating

Beautifully narrated. This story was both haunting and uplifting. You can't help liking dear Ms Oliphant.

4 people found this helpful