Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Written by Dzenana

Cath and her twin sister Wren are starting their freshman year of college. The problem is Wren has reached that stage in her life where she wants independence, adventure and not to be part of a duo so Cath is pretty much alone. Well, not totally alone though. From Goodreads: “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.

I’m not entire sure where to begin… So let’s begin with the cover! I mean, come on! I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but I’ll admit that the purchase of this book was mainly based on the simple, cute and gorgeous greenish cover.

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I loved the color of the cover, the color of the title and especially the drawn characters. This cover just screamed “fun light read!” with its pastel coloring.

However, do not let the pastels fool you! Yes, this is a fun, light and quick read, but it’s also really well balanced. It has a lightness to it while dealing with real life problems and realistic characters that are absolutely relatable. One the one hand we have a snarky, door banging roommate, gay fanfiction, a hubba-hubba super friendly guy and on the other hand we have social anxiety, abandonment and manic depression. The fact that this novel can still be considered a light and fun read is a feat in itself. The balance of being light and fun while dealing with serious issues is also reflected in the way it has drama in it without becoming downright dramatic. I really liked Cath’s character development and I found it really interesting to see her open up despite her social anxiety and to learn to deal with being herself in a place; to see the process of her opening up to new people (Levi and Reagan), new situations (her writing assignment) and simply learning to accept herself and push beyond her (rather limited) limits.

 

Just to mention a few of my favorite passages and parts:

“Walking to class, Cath couldn’t shake the feeling that she was pretending to be a college student in a coming-of-age movie.”

This was the part that really drew me in! It was just SO relatable – I mean, I literally felt the same way my two first semesters of freshman year!

Then there’s Reagan – the roommate who’s out all hours, has about a dozen different boyfriends (or so Cath thinks) and has a habit of slamming doors and kicking them open:

“Don’t feel sorry for me. I don’t want you to feel sorry for me.”

“I can’t help it,” Reagan said. “You’re really pathetic.”

“I am not.”

“You are. You don’t have any friends, your sister dumped you, you’re a freaky eater … and you’ve got some weird thing about Simon Snow.”

 

I just adored this moment. Cath and Reagan’s heart-to-heart. Or you know, the closest thing to it. I love Reagan’s honesty. She’s a cool, collected, no shit-honest.

 

Relatable characters and snarky (somewhat bitchy) roomates are all good, but let’s be honest. My favorite part of Fangirl was Levi. How could it not be? He’s so amazingly friendly! So outgoing – exactly the kind of person that makes you go “I like that guy. I want to be friends with that guy.” within ten minutes of meeting him. But my abslute favorite thing about Levi, other than the eternal smile plastered on his face, his knight in shining armor attitude and the fact that he really is interested in Cath’s gay fanfiction, is the fact that he had a receding hairline. That was just a little quirky attribute that I loved (absolutely adored). And to be honest, please don’t judge me too much, I kind of liked the fact that he kissed another girl. Levi is seriously in danger of being too close to perfect.

 

Last but not least, the fanfiction. As a (former) avid Harry Potter fanfiction reader, this part of the book totally hit home with me. And I actually read Carry On and really liked it. Even though the magic was kind of weak and parody-like.

 

                          ****

 

I gave Fangirl four stars because I really liked it. It was so good and I would definitely read it again (even though this was actually a reread). And I would recommend it to anyone liking: books, fun and light books, romance, fantasy, fanfiction, coming-of-age stories, snarky roomates, adorable too perfect love interests etc. Just read it

What did you think of Fangirl? Have you read it? Did you like the Carry On, Simon parts? Have you read anything else by Rainbow Rowell? (Awesome pen name, btb.)

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