Hey there, fellow misfits!
It’s been a bit of a crazy week for me, mainly because I’m getting used to working a full-time position like a big fancy adult. But out with the exhaustion and onto the goodies!
Today, I’ve got one big thing I’m going to be talking about: my review of Fangirl by RainbowRowell! (If you haven’t read the book, I’m going to try and keep as many spoilers as possible out of this, but be forewarned that I might slip up!) I wrote a really in-depth review on my Goodreads when I sent a fanletter to Ms. Rowell, but I thought a post about it later might be fun.
First things first: I love Fangirl. I love it more than I love avocados, which is saying a lot for a California raised girl who likes guacamole on everything she eats. For me, until I find something that is other-worldly, this book is the be-all end-all for me. Also, I bought the book, which is huge for me. For someone who loves books so much, I can be so cheap with which ones I actually purchase. If you’ve never heard of it or you need a refresher, Fangirl is the story of Cath, a girl who is going into her first year of college with her twin sister, Wren (Cath and Wren. Yeah.) Wren couldn’t be more excited to socialize and become her own person, but Cath would rather sit in her room and write Simon Snow (a Harry Potter-esque book series) fanfiction than party with college boys.
Let me say this again.
Rainbow Rowell has written a book about a girl who writes fanfiction and is transitioning to college.
JUST THE SIMPLE PLOT OF THIS BOOK ITSELF IS UNIQUE AND AMAZING.
As an avid fanfic writer (and no, Fangirl YA novel by Rainbow RowellI’m not going to show you what it is or tell you what fandom it’s for. Like Cath, I choose to keep my fanfic life and my real life separate), I can honestly tell you that there is barely any mention of us in anything. The only things that come to mind are that one episode of Supernatural when Becky (a heavily mocked character) writes dirty incestuous fanfiction about the Winchester brothers. The whole episode was kind of meta, the writers were mocking the HUGE online following that Supernatural has. If you want to read more about it, check it out here. Other than that, the only time anyone ever recognizes our existence is when we’re looped in with E.L. James and the monstrosity that is 50 Shades of Grey. I’ll probably make a post about that later, because GOOD GOLLY do I have a lot to say about it.
Anyway, the fact that Rainbow Rowell took the time to write an entire book (now “series” kind of) about fanfiction writers is so amazing, I can’t even describe it. We’re not recognized as real writers, even though we write more than most full-length books and do it all for FREE, I might mention. Sure, in Fangirl Cath is a little embarrassed about being exposed as MagiCath (her penname), but everyone just seems cool with it. Which is amazing.
Now, enough of my ranting on how happy I am that she wrote this book. Outside of the phenomenal stuff previously mentioned, the book is just awesome. It’s funny, it’s sad, it’s honest… everything that a book should be.
And, in my edition, I even got some super sweet fanart (designed by actual fans of the book!) that Ms. Rowell includes on the inside covers. And, of course, what would a good YA book be without a little bit of romance?
When Cath gets to college, she eventually meets a boy by the name of Levi, which is just a “hot guy” name if you ask me, and they become pretty close friends. He’s there for her when she needs him, she’s there for him when he needs her… it’s a romantic interest of mutual respect and support, which only made me love this book even more. The best part was the fact that the relationship isn’t the basis of Fangirl at all. It’s so hard to find a best seller nowadays where the main plot and character development doesn’t encircle a girl and a guy hooking up and falling for each other. However, I’m not saying that books like that are bad. They’re not, I absolutely love them. But it’s nice to find something a bit more realistic, a bit more outside the mold. Fangirl does just that: it doesn’t shove the love story in your face. It’s almost background noise, like you forget that you were watching them fall for each other at all.
Throughout her time at school, Cath figures out how to navigate becoming someone other than “her sister’s twin”, dealing with her father’s manic episodes and separation anxiety, romance, and not to mention that thing called college itself. All in all, Fangirl is absolutely fabulous, and if you have the chance to read it or you see it sitting on the shelf at the library or bookstore, pick it up. You won’t regret it, I promise.