Review: 5 Brilliant Stars for Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell!

by Rainbow Rowell
Publication: September 10th, 2013
Category: YA
Genre: Contemporary, Coming of Age, Romance
Source: Public Library

My Rating:

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From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & Park. A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

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? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

~My Thoughts~

On one hand, I can’t believe that I waited this long to read Fangirl. On the other hand, I feel like it was the perfect time in my life to read it. I don’t know if I would have appreciated it quite as much if I had read it when it first came out.

Fangirl is brilliant. There’s no denying it. It’s a very easy to read story, but make no mistake… there are mad writing skills behind this book. The story unfolds organically; every so slightly and realistic. There’s not one thing out of place or rushed or just thrown in for good measure.

These characters will be a part of my soul forever. They made me feel a multitude of emotions from beginning to end. I was “rooting for them.” Well, I wasn’t rooting for Wren for two-thirds of the book. I was so angry with her, which is funny because I was just like her at that age. But at the age I am now I relate much more to Cath. I was outraged at Wren’s behavior… until I wasn’t. It blows my mind that I could spend so much time wanting to throat punch her and then… just love her to pieces. It’s as if I became Cath throughout the story. I knew and could feel all their history so she was just “in” with me too. Built in best friends, no matter what.

Levi, I love you man! You are the best character ever. Never stop smiling!

Gah! I’m far too invested in this book for it to have ended. Did I love the ending? The very last page, yes, but I am heartbroken that the story is over. I want more! It’s not as if I was left with a cliffhanger at the end of a stand alone novel; I just want to keep flipping pages and existing in their world. I have the biggest book hangover. I don’t know how I’ll be able to pick up another.

Fangirl is a coming of age story that revolves around Cath finding her own way in college after being joined at the hip to her twin sister, Wren. She must learn to separate the real world from the magical world of Simon Snow that she’s been living in for so long. There’s nothing especially unusual about the plot, yet it became extraordinary in my mind.

I might be the last book blogger to have ever read this story, but I will be recommending this book to everyone I meet. And you better believe I’ll be grabbing a copy of Carry On!

~About the Author~

Rainbow Rowell writes books. Sometimes she writes about adults (ATTACHMENTS and LANDLINE). Sometimes she writes about teenagers (ELEANOR & PARK and FANGIRL). But she always writes about people who talk a lot. And people who feel like they’re screwing up. And people who fall in love.

When she’s not writing, Rainbow is reading comic books, planning Disney World trips and arguing about things that don’t really matter in the big scheme of things.

She lives in Nebraska with her husband and two sons.

Rainbow’s Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

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Wife, homeschooling mom, YA author of paranormal, dark fantasy, and horror, huge fan of the Oxford comma, book blogger, crafter, baker of sweet things, lover of the culinary arts, self-appointed zombie slayer.