I'm a fifteen year old high school sophomore with a passion for writing, reading and talking about books!
Non Spoiler Section
Cath is part of the Simon Snow fandom. She’s a fangirl, that’s just who she is. T-shirts, posters, fanfiction. She has it all. It’s a love she’s shared with her twin sister, and best friend, Wren. But as they’re beginning freshman year of college Wren breaks the news that she doesn’t want to room with Cath, leaving Cath to fend for herself.
I was slightly sceptical and hesitant going into Rainbow Rowell`s Fangirl. I hadn’t read any of Rowell’s other works and authors I haven’t read before are almost unapproachable to me; I fear a uncomfortable style of writing. The hype around Rowell and Fangirl was concerning because I often have trouble seeing the appeal in overly hyped books.
Both author and book are really hyped with good reason.
Every aspect of the novel seemed to flow. No minor detail felt unneeded because they were so enthralling. You want as much as you can get. The characters were beautiful and perfectly flawed. Descriptions were almost magical. Everything was crisp and fresh and fun. Rowell’s writing a story inside a story is pure genius to say the least.
Fangirl is a magnificent piece of literature that I would recommend to anyone and everyone.
I think I enjoyed this novel so much not only because Cath was relatable, but because whenever I opened up the book I felt like I was Cath. I feel like she represents so many people so well. People in fandoms, people with family problems, people who suffer from social and other forms of anxiety. The girl who doesn’t get all the guys. Cath sits in a place so close to my heart because she is the underdog. So many times in YA fiction the protagonist us almost too heroic and can’t possibly ever be an average person. As well, Cath isn’t portrayed as thin or perfectly figured like many main characters. She is just an average person. She doesn’t make you feel insecure while reading.
Levi was a refreshing love interest, in my mind at least. Most authors, that I have read, go for the bad boy type romantic suitor. Which is great, I enjoy those types, but it does get predictable. Levi was cute and witty and happy and just swoon worthy without trying. I was surprised when Cath and Levi got together, or when they first kissed because I fully believed that Levi was Reagan’s boyfriend. I’m glad that I didn’t see it coming. I was nervous, though, when Cath saw Levi kissing that girl in his kitchen at the party. I didn’t know how Rowell was going to resolve that situation. While Cath was struggling with this I was really feeling the feels. I wanted to be mad at Levi but I understand that Cath showed no interest in Levi and she didn’t answer him when he asked if she wanted to go, so that threw him off. I so desperately wanted them to get together, and I’m glad that they did.
So Wren. She was that one character that I despised. Cath just let her walk all over her. Wren was mean at times and rude, and essentially cared more about partying than her education; I can’t sympathise with people who believe in that because I don’t share that mindset. So many times I just wanted to shake her. I would inwardly cringe when she came into the scene. But Cath and Wren did have some cute sibling moments that really show the true love of family. The unconditional love that Cath shows Wren is heartwarming.
I was unsure of Reagan at first. She gave off so many different vibes. I was glad when she started pushing Cath out of her comfort zone and became a healthy relationship for her to have. I think we all need a Reagan. It was good decision on Rowell’s part to put an anchor like character into the story to really hold everyone down. She was realistic but she was never the bad guy. Whereas at some point Wren was; Levi was; Nick and Laura definitely were; Art— their dad— was; Courtney was; Abel was; Professor Piper was. Cath could always depend on her and I liked that.
Talking more about the Simon Snow aspect of the novel. This was certainly the most unique part of the book. If Rowell had chosen a different route to approach the story I don’t think it would have had the same effect on me as it did, and it really would have taken away from the story. Although it did confuse me at times because of the jumping between the “book’s” exerts, I got the just of what was going on. Being aware of the Simon Snow world really moved along some major character building.
It was interesting to see Cath’s struggle pertaining to creative writing and the absence of Simone Snow, and fanfiction. It too helps with some of Cath’s major character building. It displays her reluctance to move forward and hesitation towards new things really well.
Overall I loved everything about Fangirl, and I fully intend on checking out all of Rainbow Rowell’s other novels. I think I would even be eager to read her grocery list.