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Monday, December 16, 2013

NICOLE'S REVIEW: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Title: Fangirl
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Format Acquired: Paperback
Publication Date: September 10 2013
Publishing House: St. Martin's Press
ISBN: 9781250054005
Source of Copy: Purchased from FullyBooked


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 fanfiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath's sister has mostly grown away from the 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 fanfiction 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 realy 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?

(Image and information courtesy of Goodreads; Summary lifted from actual book)


I'm not exactly sure what I can say in this review that hasn't been said before but I think it's pretty obvious that my foray into Rainbow Rowell books is a definite success. I initially wanted to start with Eleanor and Park, because a lot of my blogger friends swear by it, but it's Fangirl that caught my eye. No regrets.

I understand Cath. I really do and I willingly admit that I've been through a fanfiction phase. I used to write fanfiction online - no I'm not dishing out my dirty secrets - and I used to spend my life on the internet. (I still do actually, but maybe not as much anymore) I get Cath and her addiction and her fandom and her fangirlish tendencies and that's probably why I couldn't help but love her. She's totally relatable and unquestionably real. 

Levi, on the other hand, is totally adorable. He's sweet, he's funny and charming and he's just so happy. Totally unlike your typical YA male love interest who're generally broody bad boys with a six-pack - I mean Levi's got a receding hairline but still manages to be unbearably cute. Where can I get a Levi of my own? He doesn't have some sort of a tortured past, no issues at all, he's just so....normal. Don't you just love normal guys? I know I do. Can I also mention that Cath thinks he has pornographic eyebrows? Best description for eyebrows ever.

Aside from the romance, which is totally new for Cath, there's a lot of scenes where she interacts with people which are funny and too cute. Reagan, Cath's surly roommate, in particular is a favorite of mine she's brash and bold and straight to the point. Fangirl manages to balance out everything, Cath's budding romance with Levi, her growing friendship with Reagan, her forever bond with her sister, the fragility of her father and her estranged mother. 

Cath does a lot of growing up throughout the book and I loved every moment of it. I lost a lot precious sleep reading this book but it was worth every minute. Fangirl is a humorous, heartwarming novel about a girl who's forced to step out of her comfort zone and face life, love and fanfiction and who's got to come to terms with all these changes and realize that it's totally okay to step out of her little bubble once in a while.

I also want to add that I'm not a huge fan of contemporary but I've been known to make exemptions. Rainbow Rowell's books are one of them. I'll definitely be checking out her other books now that I've been converted and I'm definitely making my friends read this. Oh if only real life were like the novels I read.




  1. I just read this book and happened to post my review of it today too! I absolutely agree with your review - I don't read a lot of contemporary either, but I really loved this book and the characters Rainbow created! Fangirl attracted my attention over her other books too, and I'm so glad I started with this because I think I relate to the issues in this book the most. Great review!

    1. I love when a book does this - surprises you with how awesome it is. :)) Best feeling ever. I was actually afraid that I wouldn't like fangirl. Obviously I was wrong. :)) I might tackle Eleanor and Park next though. Thanks for dropping by!