Eleanor and Park has many themes to their story

Eleanor and Park has many themes to their story, but the main theme is that love can be found with the person that you would least expect to fall in love with. You cannot simply choose who you fall in love with. Eleanor and Parks love story happened by chance because of where they chose to sit on the bus. Throughout the novel, Eleanor and Park seem to always doubt their relationship and the others feelings because they believe they are not good enough for each other. Because of this they believe they were not meant to fall in love.
Their first impressions were not the ideal love stories beginning. When Park first saw Eleanor wandering around the bus looking for a seat on the bus during the first day of school, he was most definitely not thinking about how beautiful she was. In the book, when he first saw her he states this: “Not just new-but big and awkward. With crazy hair, bright red on top of curly. And she was dressed like she wanted people to look at her or maybe like she didn’t get what a mess she was” (pg 8). Similarly, Eleanor’s first thoughts of Park were not that his hair and eyes were beautiful but she actually seemed to hate him. Her first thoughts of him are that he is either another one of the popular kids that will grow to bully her or an annoying Asian kid, let alone soon to be the love of her life.
Apart from their first impressions of each other, both of them were so new to romance, even holding hands gave them butterflies. Park states: “Holding Eleanor’s hand was like holding a butterfly. Or a heartbeat. Like holding something complete, and completely alive.”(15.35) Realistically they should have never fallen in love as deeply as they did since they were constantly doubting that they are good enough for each other. Eleanor has no self confidence and never thinks she will be good enough for amazing Park: “because you were always way too cute for me” (pg. 137) Eleanor believes this statement to the point where she gets very emotional about it, and makes us think that she doesn’t really believe in her and Park’s relationship. If she had fallen in love at first sight with Park she wouldn’t be so doubtful.
Eleanor and Park is partly a cliche love story, but it also gives the theme of the pureness of their relationship and love despite their home lives with Eleanor’s abuse from Richie, her step-father, and Jamie’s, Parks father, dissatisfaction in him. Their relationship is the best thing that could’ve happened to them. Park was the first to tell Eleanor he loved her and quickly too, you infer that she feels the same way, but she does not say it back until the last chapter of the story. Even though there was a tragic and open ended ending to this book, it is definite that they will always remember the excitement of their first love.
The main theme is that love can be found with the person that you would least expect to fall in love with because of their first impressions and the fact that romance was something they hadn’t experienced before.