RELEASED: September 10, 2013
PUBLISHER: Pan MacMillan
GENRE: YA Contemporary
GOODREADS RATING: 4.10
In Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl, Cath is a Simon Snow fan. Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan, but for Cath, being a fan is her life-and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.
Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.
Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.
Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words . . . And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.
For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?
Fangirl has been on my TBR for ages – ages, I tell you! The moment I knew fan-fiction was involved, I just had to get myself a copy. I used to read a lot of fan-fiction myself years and years ago. Seeing it incorporated in a book.. Well, let’s just say I was curious to see how it would play out.
Perfectly – that’s how it played out. I love how Rowell succeeds at showing fandom-love in her novel. As in I Was Born For This, Fangirl shows what a fandom can mean to someone, albeit in a whole different way this time. Although I’ve only ever been a real part of the Harry Potter-fandom, I do think we are all part of the general book-fandom which makes us relate to the subject in a whole new way. I understood why Cath felt like losing herself in that fictional world of Simon and Baz. I understood why she’d rather write and dive into her own story than be confronted with her real life.
Admittedly, that’s not the healthy way to go about things, but I understood. A huge part of that is her anxiety disorder, which was done beautifully – even if I do say so myself. I could be wrong and, if so, please do tell so I can adapt this. It’s a huge theme in this book and I loved that. It’s important, it always will be. It made me feel as if I completely understood where Cath was coming from. You all know I’ve already read some books featuring anxiety, but none of them compare to Fangirl.
Underneath this veneer of slightly crazy and mildly socially retarded, I’m a complete disaster.
Apart from that, I loved all the characters. Each and every single one of them felt unique, felt fleshed out and I bloody loved it. I love how Cath has to find herself, how she slowly has to grow into accepting strangers into her life, how side characters have such distinct voices and characteristics. They don’t blur together, not even a tiny bit!
And that’s not even mentioning the slow, slow romance building up along the way. I’m not spoiling anything by saying names – not doing that – because the whole thing is about not knowing how this novel will end. Honestly, guys, if you need a book without insta-love, just pick this one because I just know you’ll love it.
You give away nice like it doesn’t cost you anything.
Writing? Being over 450 pages, I still read this novel like it was only a 200 page book and that’s saying a lot. I flew through it, I didn’t want to stop. I actually didn’t stop when it was 11.30 pm and I had to sleep but couldn’t put it aside. I needed more. Needed more Cath, needed more Wren, needed to know what would happen next.
Not to mention my curiosity when it comes to the fan-fiction. I don’t own Carry On and I’m on a book buying ban, but.. seriously. Can someone just send me a copy so I can read it already?! I NEED IT IN MY LIFE.
I don’t trust anybody. Not anybody. And the more that I care about someone, the more sure I am they’re going to get tired of me and take off.
Do you really think I’m going to put anything in this part of my review? No way!
GI absolutely love this book with my entire heart. I can’t say a bad word about it and I really, really want to read Carry On. I’m even going as far as saying this is the newest addition to my favorites-shelf on Goodreads!
Have you read Fangirl? What did you think?
Any of you read Carry On? Is it as good as this one?
If you haven’t read either of them, are you planning on it?