Author: Rainbow Rowell
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Rating: ☆☆☆ and a half
Reagan was sitting up Cath's desk when Cath woke up.Cath is a Simon Snow fan.
"Are you awake?"
"Have you been watching me sleep?"
"Yes, Bella. Are you awake?"
- Rainbow Rowell, Fangirl
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 world of 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 the 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?
Before reading, I already knew it existed. I was so excited I finally got the chance to start reading Fangirl as a buddy read. After I finished it last night, I couldn't help but smile. It was such a cute holiday read. The romance between Cather and Levi was the highlight of the book. The plot itself could have been every fangirl's life. Rainbow Rowell did an amazing job in portraying the love from a girl towards her fandom. I, like every other reading person, can relate. Reagan, Wren and Levi were characters I enjoyed very much. Their developments and flaws were realistic, I love them.
On the other hand, I felt like an alien for not being in love with this book. It's not like Fangirl is the best book ever. The main reason why I had several struggles, was the main protagonist, Cather. From reading the description, you got the idea Fangirl would be about letting things go and make room for new ones. In the end, there's barely anything from left. I can understand that it's hard to write something new, that it's hard to be out of your comfort zone when going to college. But everyone has has these problems, and Cather made it seem like she was the only one dealing with it. No one goes to college and is immediately okay. You have to get used to new things before you can deal with them the right way. I liked the end where it shown that Cather had written the story about her mother. It's a sign of moving on. But in my opinion, it could have been a lot sooner. Don't mind me, being socially awkward as hell. I'd be the same in the beginning. But the person who Cather is in the beginning keeps dragging on and on, and there's almost no development until the very end.
I went straight into Fangirl with a hatred for fanfiction. I hated it, and you'd have never see me fangirling about it. You still wouldn't. Although, after reading, I feel like my hatred has been lowered to not liking. I first thought fanfiction was something girls wrote who couldn't come up with something better. That fanfiction were dreams, put into words and shared with others who aren't statisfied with the original books. Fangirl has confirmed my statements, but also made me understand it better. Why come up with a new story with new characters, when you can keep writing about the characters you love? By putting them into new situations and sending them on new adventures, you can expand the fandom and keep it alive. The Harry Potter fandom is the #1 example. The last book came out in 2007, yet it's alive as ever.
Conclusion? Fangirl was worth the read. It changed my point of view about fanfiction, and the romance was so sweet. But Cather, dear Cather, that girl got on my nerves every once in a while.