#Review : Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Fangirl Book Cover Fangirl
Rainbow Rowell
Romance & Contemporary
St. Martin's Griffin
September 10, 2013

#1 New York Times bestselling author! 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? A New York Times Book Review Notable Children's Book of 2013 A New York Times Best Seller!

My Thoughts

I think one of the biggest themes in this story is the romance, so ill start there. I found Levi to be quite interesting. Def not what i would call book boyfriend, but he seemed to fit Cath well. I liked Nick too and thought that he fit Cath well too…until he proved to be a crappy person. One thing that seemed really awkward was Cath’s reluctance to get closer to Levi. I mean i can def appreciate abstinence but that’s not the same as being affectionate and generally a warm person. Cath kind of reminds me of a freezer. She actually kind of reminds me of someone who may have past sexual trauma or the sort. I guess it was supposed to demonstrate her reluctance as a virgin and the aftermath of her mother’s abandonment…but i think it was taken too far. I think some teenagers have communication difficulties as well as low confidence. In relationships, they should feel confident in just saying “no, i dont want sex” or “i dont want to do this if it leads to sex” or whatever they feel.

Another theme that was quite big in this book was family and redemption. Cath’s mom left when she was younger. This caused a ripple affect for the family, especially the dad, who had some sort of mental disorder or something that caused him to go a little crazy…it wasn’t specifically labeled but it caused a rift in the family, along with their Mother’s abandonment. Cath’s twin Wren has also a few issues, though they were pretty much the opposite of Cath’s. The whole idea of family healing is very positive and a great message.

One thing that slightly annoyed me about the story was the writing. I think it could use an editor. I really dislike third person and this book reminds me why. One example would be with dialog. If two females are talking and then the author says she or her, its not always clear which female the author means…which slows down the reading. Also, with 3rd person, the author has to constantly say peoples name to distinguish them…it’s slightly annoying. Despite this though, i really enjoyed the story.

  • author's avatar

    Rainbow Rowell

    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.

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