Review: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Rainbow Rowell
Series: None
Released: September 10th, 2013
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Rating: 4.5 stars
Word Rating: FANGIRLed my way through this
Reviewed by: Mel

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A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

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 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 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?

I just knew that I was going to love Fangirl. Even though quite a number of my Goodreads friends rated it 2 stars, I absolutely LOVED it. In fact, I don’t think saying that ‘I loved it’ will do any justice. There are just simply. no. words. If you’re a fangirl, this book is definitely for you. THE TITLE IS FANGIRL, FOR GOD’S SAKE. However, Rainbow Rowell’s latest is no just about a fangirl named Cath who sits on her bed writing fanfiction about her favourite series all day long. Sure, there is that, but Fangirl is so much more. This is a novel about family, first love, finding yourself and learning to break down some walls and welcome the reality that lies in front of you.

Cath is a fangirl. She is addicted to the Simon Snow books. She even writes fanfiction about them. She used to write it with her identical twin sister, Wren. But now that they are in college, Wren wants a new start. Wren is no longer a Simon Snow fan. Now all on her own, Cath isn’t so sure of what to do. Cath was a character that I could relate very closely to. She’s an introvert and has trouble making friends. She went an entire month without proper meals because she didn’t know where the dining hall was. She didn’t want to go looking for it, and she didn’t ask her roommate. She just ate protein bars and peanut butter instead.
“It’s not just that…I don’t like new places. New situations. There’ll be all those people, and I won’t know where to sit—I don’t want to go.” 
I could totally relate. I am absolutely terrified of new places or places where there’s a lot of people and a lot of noise. I even hate going to the local shopping centre in fear of seeing anyone I know—but aren’t my friend. It’s just plain AWKWARD. I guess that’s how I end up living in my room when I’m not at school.
The relationships were done fantastically in Fangirl. Cath gains a friend, Reagan who is her roommate. She may look daunting and rude, but she was pretty considerate on the inside.
“I feel sorry for you, and I’m going to be your friend.”
“I don’t want to be your friend,” Cath said as sternly as she could. “I like that we’re not friends.”
“Me, too,” Reagan said. “I’m sorry you ruined it by being so pathetic.”
I also loved the sister dynamic—it was portrayed in a realistic manner. There were ugly bits, but there were also heart-warming moments between Cath and Wren. (Oh and I was absolutely shocked when I discovered the Cather-wren, Catherine, thing. Very cool.) Sisters (and brothers) might have rocky relationships, but they are always looking out for each other and will do anything because they come first.

Ahh can we take a moment and fangirl about Levi? He is absolutely THE SWEETEST AND ASDFGHJKL;. I was shipping the two from the get-go.

Trust me guys, you’ll fangirl yourselves right through this one. And when you reach the end, you’ll be on Google Images fangirling through fan-art. Well, that’s what I did anyway.
Wren and Cath


  1. Thanks for the fantastic review, Melanie! I'm so glad you enjoyed Fangirl.

  2. Awesome review!! I have this on audiobook and have been meaning to get to it forever. I think I will really enjoy it.

  3. I give. I am adding it to my wish list. It just sounds too cute to ignore. Also, other bloggers are demanding blood the longer i put it off.

  4. you have definitely convinced me to move this up my TBR! ~Sheri


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