Sunday, September 15, 2013

Review: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell


Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: September 10, 2013
Rating: 5 stars
Source: eARC from NetGalley/Finished copy sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

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?

What I Liked:

I don't... I don't even know where to begin with this book. I read this book, starting on a Tuesday night, and finishing on the Wednesday evening, and then I moved in as a freshman in college of Thursday. I mean, call it fate, or God, or a coincidence, or whatever you want, but it was literally the PERFECT book I could have randomly decided to read right before I left to be a college freshman myself. 

This book is the LAST book I read before I moved in. It's incredible how that worked out. If Rowell wrote this book, if St. Martin's Press set the publication date for what it is, if I got that opportunity to read this book early... that was for me, you all. I mean, I just feel like all of that worked out for me, perfectly.

You see, Cath and her sister Wren are moving into college. On the very first page, Cath is moving in. Cath and Wren are twins, and were inseparable, until they finally arrive at college. Wren insisted on NOT rooming with Cath. Cath is a bit antisocial, and she spends all of her time writing fanfiction. She doesn't make friends well, and doesn't leave her room often.

Wren is the opposite. She is outgoing, social, a party girl, a risk taker, willing to talk to anyone, try anything, etc. Wren is totally ready to forget life at home, where their dad is slightly unstable, mentally. Wren does get in contact with their mother, who left them for like, ten years, or something. Cath worries all the time about their dad, but hates their mom.

So, this book seems to be about several things. It's about Cath and Wren, and their changing relationship as twins and friends and sisters. It's about Cath and Levi, the cute boy who seems to be everywhere Cath is. It's about Cath coming out of her shell, and growing into herself. It's about Cath and her family, making choices with father and basically nonexistent mother.

Cath and Wren are so different, and their relationship takes huge hits in college. Wren ignores Cath, Cath doesn't respond to Wren BECAUSE Wren is ignoring Cath sometimes, Cath worries about Wren, Wren thinks Cath is too clingy and invasive... they are different people, but they need each other more than they realize.

Cath and Levi are the best couple. It's not about hot, steamy chemistry between the two of them. Levi is so adorable, and an all-around good guy. He's a few years older than Cath, but he is so great. Their relationship is hilarious and gorgeous. I seriously loved watching the two of them fall in love, and watching their relationship progress. Nothing was rushed, but everything was totally THEM. Totally Cath and Levi.

Cath has to learn a lot in this book. All she wants to do is write fanfiction, and she seems to hate college, because she's so consumed by writing. She doesn't even enjoy her writing class at times. But, she begins to see that there is more to college than fanfiction. There is more to writing than fanfiction.

Cath's relationship with her father is so amazing. I mean, she always did what any responsible, caring daughter would do, when her father was in trouble, or needed anything. The same goes with Cath helping Wren (though Wren did not want Cath's help, often). I could totally understand why Cath couldn't get over her hatred of her mother. I mean, I probably wouldn't like the woman either, if she left when parenting got too hard, and then tried to come back and establish a relationship with the girls.

I seriously don't know what else to say about this book. It's one of the books that are so amazing, and so powerful, and so beautiful, that you don't know how to describe it, or write about it, or comment on it. There isn't much of a climax in this book, but I liked that, because it seemed like this book was about Cath, her life story, and that doesn't necessarily need a climax.

I love this book. I love it. And I love the timing of it, with my life. I mean, it couldn't have been more perfect.

What I Did Not Like:

I seriously have nothing to say. It's long? But the length didn't bother me at all.

Would I Recommend It:

TOTALLY. Anyone can read and love this one (unless you're looking for nasty crazy college-student NA contemporary romance sex. Not happening in this one). I think people like me (incoming freshmen) should read this book right before going to college. It gave me a different look on college.

Rating:

5 stars - 5 perfect, unadulterated stars. I can't even begin to describe how much I loved this book. I hope you read it and love it as well! Now, I have to go read Rowell's other books.


Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!

34 comments:

  1. That's funny about the time of this one considering your own circumstances. It sounds cute. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Right?! I was so pleased! Thank YOU, Sophia!

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  2. Sounds like it couldn't have come at a better time for you!
    I'm so looking forward to getting to read this one myself! I have it in my TBR list but I still need to finish other books I have pending before getting to it, but can't wait!

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    1. YES! Exactly! And I didn't do it on purpose at all! I just picked up the biggest book I could find that needed to be reviewed. I hope you read and love Fangirl, Pili!

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    2. I actually pulled one of those TBR list be damned and stayed up till 7 am to finish this one on Sunday night! Was a total zombie all day (and night) yesterday but SO WORTH IT! SO LOVED THIS BOOK!

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    3. YAY! I mean, I'm sorry you were zoned out the day after, but YAY! I'm so glad that you loved this book as well, Pili <3

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  3. Yay :D So happy that you loved it too. <3 I just read it. And oh. It was so perfect. Levi and Cath truly were the perfect couple <3

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    1. Oooo, I'm glad you liked this book as well, Carina! Definitely a great book in terms of the romance!

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  4. What perfect timing for you to read this book! I've heard a lot of great things about it and can't wait to read it! Thanks for your thoughts:)

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    1. It really was! I think you'd like this one, Erika. Thank YOU!

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  5. I've seen nothing but good things about this book. I NEED IT!!! Levi & Cath sound like SUCH an adorable couple <3
    Happy reading
    Jackie

    http://nobentspines.blogspot.com/

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    1. Levi and Cath are the cutest! And this book is just SO PERFECT. Thank you, Jackie!

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  6. I've heard awesome things about this one! I'm so glad that you loved it! I just picked it up and can't wait to read it! Thank you for the great review!

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    1. I am confident that you would like it! Read it soon :D Thank you, Katie <3

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  7. ..."unless you're looking for nasty crazy college-student NA contemporary romance sex."

    Hehe. Nice. Never looking for that, always worried I'll find it. One of the reasons I avoid contemporary and NA. This one sounds great though. Awesome that you read it at just the right time for you. I love it when that happens.

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    1. LOL! My best line, by far ;)

      I think you'd like this one, especially if you're avoiding the typical college-life (usually NA-style) book. It was really great timing for me!

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  8. I can't wait to read this one, and I love that you loved it, especially reading it right as you entered college. That is too perfect. This one will probably be a weird read for me though. I'm an identical twin, and Cath is a twin too. Sometimes, it's hard for me to read about twins in a realistic setting, especially college (I just graduated, woot woot!) But I'm hoping this one turns out to be great on all fronts for me as well. We'll see! *fingers crossed*

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    1. So, so perfect, right?! And LOL, I think it would be interesting to see how you felt about this book. Congratulations on graduating! But seriously, if you read this book, I will be awaiting your thoughts! I'm sure you'll love it though ;)

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  9. Great review; I so want to read this book now. Off to add it to my TBR pile.

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  10. Awesome review. You make me want to stop reading the book I'm into now to start this. ^_^ I'm excited now!

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    1. Haha, then I've done my "job" well :D Hope you love Fangirl!

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  11. I absolutely loved this book too! There were no flaws and I would love to read more about Levi and Cath. Rainbow Rowell is one amazing woman. Her books are always so amazing!

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    1. Me too! That would be so cool if she wrote a sequel - although I think Cath and Levi's story is finished. I definitely want to check out Rowell's other books!

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  12. I have this book and definitely I will read,with this great review convinced me to read this book,very,very soon :D

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  13. I heard a lot of good things about this book, but, is it THAT good? because I am going to look for it but I am scared I might get disappointed...

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    1. It is! I hope you don't get disappointed! But I totally understand - at this point, it's possible to be disappointed, because SO MANY PEOPLE loved this book. But I hope you love it!

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  14. Lovely, lovely review, Alyssa. I'm happy the timing worked so well for you. I definitely wish that I had Fangirl and Just One Day to read when I was a freshman because they both apply so much to my life back then. Definitely will be a long-time favorite. There's not a single part of this book I don't like. Cath & Levi, Cath & their dad, Cath and Reagan... love it all. Absolutely brilliant!

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    1. YAY! And ooo, I have not read Just One Day. I'll have to check it out. This one will be a classic! Rowell is a genius :D

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  15. So many reviewers gush about this book that i feel I should read it! My college days are long over but it sounds super cute!

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    1. YOU MUST! It's a really great novel. And that's okay - I'm positive that you will still love this book!

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  16. Awesome review Alyssa I must say I have not read any books of Rainbow Rowell yet so many of my friends rant & rave about her books and that I should read it but I am afraid that I am going read it with high expectations and than I am just not going to not like it but I do want to read and get her book Landline when it comes out but I am going to see if I read Attachments first to see how I like it first because the book looks and sounds like right up my alley! thanks for sharing Alyssa

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    1. Thank you, Katiria! This was my first Rowell read, and I absolutely love this book. Reading Landline is a great idea! I want to read that one as well. And then Attachments, and then Eleanor & Park.

      Thank YOU, Katiria! <3

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