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Housing Elephants Kindle Edition
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Billy and Eve are two lost souls you just can't help falling in love with right from the start of the book. You find yourself rooting for them right from the off, hoping that they can take the connection that's so obvious between them and allow it to somehow heal their brokenness.
Billy's life is an unbelievably difficult one. His family has been torn apart by one of the cruelest diseases there is and he's left shouldering the weight of both his and his father's grief. He deals with far too many burdens for somebody his age, sacrificing his own dreams somewhere along the way. At times I just wanted to pluck him from the story and give his battered and bruised soul a hug and tell him everything would be alright in the end.
Eve lives an isolated life, cutting herself off from the rest of the world for reasons that, at the start of the story, she doesn't quite understand yet. She's spent her entire life (or what she can remember of it) up to this point running away from anybody who tries to get close to her. She has walls erected around her that seem impenetrable and she likes it that way. She doesn't realise just how lonely the road she's walking is until Billy hammers relentlessly on those walls, unwilling to give up on the beautiful soul he sees beneath her fear and isolation.
When these two come together, it makes for a gripping and beautiful read that kept me turning the pages well into the night. The characters are real, flawed and relatable and the very real, very difficult issues are dealt with in a sensitive but extremely emotional way. I'm not ashamed to say that I cried in several places.
The supporting characters are almost as engaging as Eve and Billy, and I look forward to hopefully seeing more of them in the sequel. At no point do they seem like they're there purely to support the story. Each one has their own development through the story, alongside the key duo.
Eleanor Lloyd Jones writes intelligently, very much on the wavelength of her characters, and in doing so, she manages to take the reader away from their own life and thrusts them into the centre of the drama unfolding on the pages.
Overall this was a brilliant 5* read that deals with an array of issues with compassion, without ever really pulling any punches. It made me laugh, it made me cry, and in places, it made me want to hurl my Kindle through the window, which, to me, is the mark of an amazing book.
I wish Eleanor Lloyd Jones all the best with what looks to me to be a promising writing career.
Eleanor Lloyd-Jones has smashed it with her debut novel. This is a story about the kind of love that only happens once in a lifetime and Billy's and Eve's attraction leaps off the pages. There are some heart racing, heartbreaking moments, and there are times when you just have to take a look away, suck in a breath and prepare yourself for what's ahead, but never... not once will you want to put this book down and pull yourself out of their world. I love the fact that it is set in York, too. It just made the whole story all the more real, relatable and beautiful to me.
The characters each had their own struggles, and the issues that surround us all in everyday life weren't hidden or glorified. They were laid out bare for all to see, and for every reader to engage with. Eve, is broken, so broken she thinks there's no hope of her ever being repaired, but Billy (not exactly living the dream life himself) simply refuses, no matter how hard she tries to push him away, to give up on her. Those are the book boyfriends we all love and want to cherish. The ones that make every girl who has ever suffered any kind of heartbreak, believe that there's a Billy out there watching over them, too.
I could go on and on about this real-life romance, but I think it's one of those novels that you should go into as blind as possible. So just take my word for it. Buy the book! Well done to ELJ on this brilliant debut. I wish you all the luck in the world in your publishing life. You've just shown with Housing Elephants how much you deserve to be right in the thick of it.
By Eleanor Lloyd-Jones
‘He’d seen this girl before and knew she was different to the others that he had spent time with. Her eyes spoke volumes about just how different. Something behind the grey swirls reflected feelings that were inside of him, and he frowned with emptiness and confusion as she walked away.”
How do you rid yourself of your past? How do you begin to trust again? Housing Elephants was the most “real” book I have ever read. This isn't a fru-fru romance, there was no dashing millionaire, no naive girl playing victim. This book is about life. True, raw life. Eleanor doesn’t shy away from telling the truth. Sometimes, the truth is ugly, and Eleanor paints truth’s picture elegantly, but doesn’t sugar coat the reality that comes with real life.
“He wanted to hold her hand while she emptied her bucket of broken pieces onto the floor and then sit cross-legged next to her and help her to put them back together again.
Eve, anxious and scared; Billy, trying to hold it all together; when they meet, both of their worlds are turned upside down. Trying to deal with a s***ty life is hard enough, but when you meet someone that needs you to help them survive, the reality is almost too painful. The scenarios that Eve and Billy live through each day, are a huge eye opener for us, the readers. We are used to hearts and flowers, but Eleanor shows us love in a primal way. Where survival seems like a nightmare. Where trust is foreign, and where love hurts.
“Their love was painful. It was all consuming, and they hadn’t been able to see through the thickness of it in order to start living again.”
This book blew my mind. It was unlike anything I have ever read. So real, and so emotional. It was like watching a tragic ballet story. My heart beat fast, and my head spun while reading Housing Elephants. The words Eleanor used flowed flawlessly, and I could feel the love that Eleanor put into this book. She is a timeless author, and I will most definitely be reading more of her works.
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This whole booked had me gripped. Eleanor really captured all of the emotions possible in this book.Read more
The story follows two young adults through a time in their lives where they are dealing with big things and learning to be...Read more
I loved that this book was set in York.Read more