Friday, April 18, 2014

Review: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Source: Purchased
Pages: 435
Series: Standalone
Release Date: September 10, 2013

A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love. 

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?

I picked this book up and read about 20 pages, then I put it down. A few months later I picked up up again.. and I am SO glad I decided to give it another chance! I guess the first time I tried to read it I just wasn't in the mood for it. Who knows. All I know is that I freakin' LOVED this book. I never wanted it to end and was so sad when it did.

This book wasn't only about fangirls and nerds being awkward. It was also about family problems, friendships, disppointments, first love, being a freshman in college... it was about what a teenager goes through. Not just college, but life.

Family played a huge role in this book. Between surviving college, Cath's dad's illness, and Wren's problem, there is no way they would have survived this without the support of one another. Cath has a hard time dealing with being "alone" during her first semester of college. Her sister has ditched her and her dad is hours away. At one point, she doesn't even want to go back to college. However with her fathers support, she goes back for the second semester and she couldn't be happier! Next, her father is alone and ends up becoming sick and ends up in the hospital. Cath is able to come home and help take care of him and with her help, he ends up so much better. I think that family is one of the most important aspects of this book. Without one another, there's a chance that none of them would have survived their struggles that they were put through.

Cath, the main character, is kind of your clichĂȘ nerd. I mean, the girl writes fanfiction based off her favorite series of books. She was completely obsessed with Simon & Baz. She did very little socializing, she was always in her own little world, didn't like change, and lived off protein bars. She was the type of character that a lot of people could relate to . She was down to earth, authentic, and I loved her character from the start.

Wren is Cath's twin sister. She is the complete opposite of Cath. She was very outgoing, she partied, and she never really cared for anything other than drinking ad partying. She outgrew her Simon & Baz phase. I wasn't a huge fan of her. I would have been more supportive of my sister and been there for her a lot more than Wren was for Cath. However when a turn of events happens, things start to look up.

Levi can be described in one word: PERFECT! There isn't one bad thing that I could think of that could possibly describe this boy. However, there are a lot of things that I could say about him to describe how amazing he is! First, he works at Starbucks... Hello free coffee! Second, he's super freakin nice! Like not to just Cath, but to everyone! He's just an overall friendly person and that is just one thing that makes him super attractive. Another thing, his smile! Sure, we don't exactly know what his smile looks like... but with the way Rainbow Rowell describes it in the book, I have a pretty clear picture of what it would look like. And what would it look like? ABSOLUTELY PERFECTION. Like he has one of those smiles that could just make your heart melt because it's so amazing. Next, the way he thinks Cath's geekiness is super attractive. Who wouldn't want a guy that thought that their love and passion was attractive?! I'm pretty sure you'd be insane if you didn't love that! I don't think there are really words to explain how perfect Levi is. Actually, I'm pretty sure there aren't words to explain him. He's too perfect. WHERE IS MY LEVI?!

There is some wonderful romance in this book. First, of course, you have Cath and Levi. You can't help but absolutely love them together! They are the kind of couple that makes you super jealous and think you're just gonna end up forever alone because your expectations of a relationship and of a guy skyrocketed because of them. The way they act together, the way they care for one another, how supportive they are of each other, the way they love each other; it's all so perfect. Throughout the whole book, I was super jealous of her relationship with Levi. Like I said, they set the bar pretty high for any guy that may want to start a relationship with me haha. 

Reagan is Cath's roommate. She seemed to be in a bad mood all the time and was never really there very much. When she was, she was usually just there to change her clothes or to sleep (and even that was a rare thing.) She was usually put partying, at work, or studying. However when she was needed, she was there for her friends.

Overall, this book was absolutely amazing. I liked it a whole lot more than I expected to, and yes, I even liked it more than Eleanor & Park. Oops! If you haven't read anything by Rainbow Rowell, I definitely recommend adding her books to your reading list! They are definitely worth the read!


  1. I loved Fangirl too. I just found Cath to be so relatable. I've never experienced her anxiety to that extreme but I could definitely relate to it. Though, I didn't like the fan fic parts the Simon Snow parts did nothing for me. I just ended up skipping those parts because I wanted more Cath and Levi.

    1. To be honest, I didn't read the fan fic either. I tried to, but I never could really get into it. So I also just skipped over that part and kept reading more about Cath and Levi!

  2. #Hanna here! I am not usually a fan of novels like this but I adored Fangirl. I kept checking the cover because Nick’s description did not fit the cover guy and that bothered me to no end. “This can’t be Nick then who is this? Definitely not Levi because he’s Reagans boyfriend,” was my line of thought until I reached the part where Levi and Cath kissed. Anyway fabulous book and a great review!

    1. Now that you mention it, I'm gonna have to check into this. Haha. But thank you!



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