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.
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.
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