Disclaimer: this review is just going to be long way of saying that I love this book. I have nothing critical to say. Nothing. So if you can’t stand fluff and rainbows - don’t read it.
Everyone always writes reviews about how books made them “laugh and cry” or “it was a roller coaster of emotions” and it always makes me want to stab my eyes out. I love books as much as the next book blogger, but that much? Nah. I might almost cry or kinda laugh, but not in a roller coaster way.
Until I read Fangirl. I was familiar with Rainbow Rowell from Eleanor and Park and I really liked that book. Liked. Not loved it as much as everyone around me seemed to do. So I was wary about Fangirl. The reviews were amazing, but then again, I’ve been let down quite a few times since deciding to read people’s reviews.
Fangirl is so worth it
It was even better than everyone made it out to be. It was original, funny, heartbreaking fluff that combines family issues with relationship problems with growing up pains. How did Rainbow manage to do that in 500 pages? No clue, but it’s wonderful.
The story follows Cath, full name Cather, who is going to uni together with her sister Wren. The two are polar opposites - Cath is quiet, shy and very uncomfortable with everything, while Wren immediately becomes party girl number one on campus.
While Wren goes out and makes friends, Cath continues doing what the twins did at home: writing Simon Snow fanfiction. Simon Snow is basically the Harry Potter of the Fangirl world and Cath is obsessed with writing fan fiction about Simon and his enemy, but secret lover in the end, Baz. Hence the title - Fangirl.
Cath moves in with Reagan, who is this kickass roommate. She seems like a mean person, but turns out to be very supportive of Cath. Reagan motivates her to go out and explore life and herself. Girlpower to the max.It was so nice to finally read a book where two very different girls meet, but can still be friends. This happens all the time with boys in books, but almost never with girls. It was such a relief to read that Rainbow didn’t take the mean girl route.
But with Reagan comes her ex-boyfriend Levi.
The guy we all want to date.
And honestly, did anyone ever read this book and not fall in love with Levi? He’s from small-town Nebraska and his main expertise is anything to do with farming. So at first, I didn’t like him. A farm boy? Very cliché. But Levi is anything but cliché. He’s kind and caring and it turns out that there is a lot more to his personality than you think - though I can’t reveal too much, because I don’t want to spoil it.
Only criticism for Levi is that he seemed to a bit needy of attention. He was always hanging around Cath and Reagan’s room. But then, the girls enjoyed this, so it’s not really a flaw. Just something I would change about my personal Levi.
Rainbow Rowell manages to combine a lot of characters (5 almost main characters, besides Cath) and several plot elements in a way that truly shows her talent as a writer. A reader never feels like there is an unnatural switch of focus from one theme or one character to another. Everything flows and the book just reads like one simple story. It isn’t until you put it down that you really realise how many elements are touched upon within the story.
Anything negative about the book? Yes - I wish there was more of it! I wanted to cry when I finished this book; it really felt like I had to leave a group of friends behind. I wish there was more Cath and Levi. What happens to Wren? Rainbow, don’t leave us hanging like that.
So it will be no surprise to any reader that this book gets 5 out of 5 stars. It’s perfection. It made my inner fangirl come out - I can’t even write a very serious review about it because I just love everything so much. Please give me more Fangirl.