I had many tell me, begging me to read Fangirl. From bloggers, BookTubers, friends, family, and random internet reviews wanting anybody who would listen to jump on the Fangirl bandwagon. Fangirl was the quickest, most entertaining, relatable, and best book I had read in all of the 33 books I read during 2015.
400 pages is a great amount of room in which to tell a story, but Rainbow Rowell, author of Fangirl, not only wrote Cath’s, the main character of Fangirl, journey into college while being a longer, heavy reader, and successful writer of fanfiction, but Rowell also gave her readers a look into the fanfiction story Cath herself was writing as the events of Fangirl took place.
Rowell, did a splendid job of creating both Cath’s world and the world of Simon Snow within the same story. Cath’s world was “reality” and Simon Snow’s world was that of fiction, much like our own Harry Potter. You only glimpse Simon’s world when you are reading snippet’s of Cath’s fanfiction set in that world. With just a few short clips you gain an understanding of how Simon’s world works, who Simon and his friends are, and fall in love with everything Simon Snow. This second world within the story does not take away from Cath’s story or world. I, as a reader, related to Cath on every level. Loner? Check. Reader? Check. Fanfiction writer? Check. Awkward in social situations… or any situations really? Check. I was Cath and Cath was me on every level… well except she got along with her roommate and actually made it through college fine enough.
“To really be a nerd, she’d decided, you had to prefer fictional worlds to the real one.”
I cried with Cath and rooted for her. I felt her embarrassment, excitement, anxiety, and everything else as if they were all my own. The friends and relationships Cath formed I had no trouble keeping up with or loving.
Rainbow Rowell did such a fantastic job with this story and conveying how a person can be so wrapped up in a world, in story that they did not create, but fall into so deeply that the person can spew out writings of their own based on those characters and worlds that which do not belong to them. There will be real fanfiction written about Cath and her life and her continuation of writing fanfiction, but there will also be fanfiction about Simon Snow, a character in a book series that does not actually exists for us. It’s a case of severe fanfiction inception. I am a fangirl through and through and the day I picked up this book and started reading was also the same day in which I finished that book and cried because I had read through it so fast.
At the risk of making you 100% sick and tired of others telling you to read this book to the point where you decide to never read it, I’m saying, “READ THIS BOOK!” Never in a million years will you be sorry that you had, but one day you may become sorry that you hadn’t read it sooner. This book, this story (stories) is a rare find indeed. I honestly do not have the time, nor the words to fully, and satisfyingly convey everything I think and feel about this book all in one blog post. I thank Rainbow Rowell whole heartily for sharing this masterpiece with the world. Also, for anybody who is interested, Rainbow Rowell released a spin-off, standalone to Fangirl, Carry On. Carry On is the fanfiction story Cath, the main character of Fangirl, had been writing about the fictional book series, Simon Snow, during the events of Fangirl.
Achem… um if you have heard of Fangirl and was considering reading it, but ended up finding this review first and became so confused as to what “fangirl” and “fanfiction” mean, then I’m sorry. It’s terminology that is picked up, and understood, and lived by over time, but I have attached a video below to help you better understand the world of fangirling and fanfiction writing.
Rainbow Rowell: All of Her Books
Fangirl: Official Page
Carry On: Official Page
Read or write your own Fanfiction based on your favorite books, movies, comics, TV shows… etc: The site is actually called, FanFiction.net
Fanfiction? Fangirling?: Let Dan Howell, internet/YouTube Star, Explain Everything