book review :: fangirl by rainbow rowell

12 February 2014

Title: Fangirl
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Publication Date: January 30th 2014
Pages: 480
Format: Paperback, Finished Copy
Book: For Review*
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Coming-of-Age, Family, Friendships
Summary: From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & Park.
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?
finally. finally i own Fangirl. it was such a fun read that literally had me fangirling and making random faces throughout (thank goodness i read at night). it's a book i would definitely re-read again, and again, and again, even though i preferred Eleanor & Park (i think that will stay my ultimate favourite of Rainbow Rowell's books forever). oh, where to start with this book though? the cover is gorgeous, i have a UK paperback
which has extra content *fist pump* - cartoon's of the main characters on the back of the front cover, a small cartoon strip of a *certain* scene on the back of the back cover and an interview with Rainbow Rowell.
i sticky noted this book to death.
me throughout the book
every couple of pages i would read something that would make me laugh, or smile, or dance a happy dance and then i would whip out my sticky notes for later. because this book will not fail to make you happy. so all those places i sticky-noted? i'm just going to re-read them if i'm sad and they will turn my frown upside down. ;)
Fangirl was basically the story of my life. seriously. i'm slightly scared that Rainbow Rowell has been stalking me. I'm an introvert, like Cath. I love fiction, like Cath. I'm a fangirl, like Cath, in conlusion. I am like Cath. (apart from a tiny bit of Reagan in me..) Rainbow Rowell has managed to dig deep into the lives of fangirls everywhere and portray exactly what it is like to be part of a huge fandom, from beginning to end, and depicts perfectly how it feels when that fandom ends.
The characters made the book into a rainbow (*cough*) of different attitudes and emotions and feelings, and for me they made the story. They were each so strong in their own way that they rubbed off on me, i've started talking like Reagan (oops) and Cath has made me want to write fanfiction! (yay or nay?).
Surprisingly, i didn't even mind the occasional swearing that cropped up here and there, because i was so ensconced in the characters and plot it just passed me by. And I came to know Reagan especially by her attitude and swear-words, it was who she was!
me reading the cather and levi scenes.
I can't really sum this book up in one word because it's impossible to pinpoint the exact awesomeness of it, but i did read a review of Fangirl a while back that pretty much described my feelings towards Rainbow Rowell's writing: "It’s like Rainbow Rowell writes in peanut butter and stolen moments and lazy eyelash wishes." - quote from "That's All" Ash . I only disliked one thing in this book, and i only realized i disliked it when my friend Amber (The Mile Long Bookshelf) mentioned it. The ending. It kind of, petered out into nothing..there was no great big climax, or...anything really. The ending just was. And maybe i thought this because i've been reading a lot of Veronica Roth/John Green books where PEOPLE DIE AT THE END. (oops. spoiler alert. but seriously, if you haven't read their books yet WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING?), i don't know. but it disappointed me a little.
At the end of Fangirl i was a mushy-fied mess. The book made me smaunce (smile+laugh+dance). It was a joyous, sweet and funny coming-of-age story that no-one should miss. Why? Because it's so relatable. You just can't help but love it with all your heart, you'll get so caught up in it you won't notice anything of your surroundings and by the end of it, the characters will have become your best friends. My rating: 
“In new situations, all the trickiest rules are the ones nobody bothers to explain to you. (And the ones you can't Google.)”
“Real life was something happening in her peripheral vision.”
“Just … isn’t giving up allowed sometimes? Isn’t it okay to say, ‘This really hurts, so I’m going to stop trying’?”
“It sets a dangerous precedent.”
“For avoiding pain?”
“For avoiding life.”
“You’ve read the books?”
“I’ve seen the movies.”
Cath rolled her eyes so hard, it hurt. (Actually.) (Maybe because she was still on the edge of tears. On the edge, period.) “So you haven’t read the books.”
“I’m not really a book person.”
“That might be the most idiotic thing you’ve ever said to me”
“But you're so helpless sometimes. It's like watching a kitten with its head trapped in a Kleenex box.”
“You give away nice like it doesn't cost you anything.”
“Sometimes writing is running downhill, your fingers jerking behind you on the keyboard the way your legs do when they can’t quite keep up with gravity.”
“I feel sorry for you, and I’m going to be your friend.”
“I don’t want to be your friend,” ........ “I like that we’re not friends.”
“Me, too" .... "I’m sorry you ruined it by being so pathetic.”
“It’s just … everything. There are too many people. And I don’t fit in. I don’t know how to be. Nothing that I’m good at is the sort of thing that matters there. Being smart doesn’t matter—and being good with words. And when those things do matter, it’s only because people want something from me. Not because they want me.”
“...I feel like I need to make a pinhole in a piece of paper just to look at you.”
“Smiling is confusing, she thought. This is why I don’t do it.”
“I'd rather pour myself into a world I love and understand than try to make something up out of nothing.”
“That was the beauty in stacking up words--they got cheaper, the more you had of them.”
“I don't like hello. It makes me sound like I have dementia, like I've never heard a phone ring before and I don't know what's supposed to happen next. Hello?
“To really be a nerd, she'd decided, you had to prefer fictional worlds to the real one.”
“If we stop to apologize and forgive each other every time we step on each other’s toes, we’ll never have time to be friends.”
“...I tried to be mean to him."
"I thought you were just mean," Reagan said. "I liked that about you.”
“You shouldn't reward me for endangering your life, you know. Think of the precedent you're setting.”
“That's not the point," he said. "What kind of creep would I be if I let my girl carry something heavy while I walked along, swinging my arms?"
Your girl? "The kind that respects my wishes," she said. "And my strength, and my... arms."
"...I have a lot of respect for your arms. I like how they're attached to the rest of you.”
“I know what it’s like to be distracted. To seek out distractions. To exhaust yourself doing every other little thing rather than face a blank page”
“Words are very powerful and they take on more power the more that they’re spoken.… the more that they’re said and read and written, in specific, consistent combinations” 
“Books don't have intermissions either."
"What do they have?"
(okay - maybe more than a few - you see now about me wanting to sticky-note everything?!)
*thank you so so so so so so much to Macmillan for sending me this free of charge. This in no way affected my opinion.


  1. Yayayayay!! Fangirl is my new favourite Rowell book with all its awesomeness! Great review :D

    1. YES IT IS AWESOME (although i liked Eleanor & Park better a little bit more. :)) thanks!

  2. F.A.N.G.I.R.L.

    *sighs blissfully* One of my favourite books. Everything was perfect and beautiful and flawless. The amount I could relate to Cath was ridiculous ;) US FANGIRLS STICK TOGETHER.
    Love your review. GIFs = Zoe is happy :D

    SO MANY GOOD QUOTES I CAN'T EVEN. The characters are so real.. Rainbow Rowell is a genius. Thanks for sharing, Hawwaunicorn<3

    1. *fangirls*

      Thank you. Gifs make me happy too. ;)

      THANKS. not too many then? ;p YOUR WELCOME LLAMA

  3. Fangirl is so awesome! I adore this novel :D ADORE. I need to re-read it again. Which I will.

  4. You will probably slaughter my body or cook me alive to know that I didn't exactly like Eleanor and Park. *cowers and hides and will not come out till a thousand years have passed by* It was fine, but I just couldn't relate enough to enjoy the story in its full potential. This, however, I think I might like. A lot. Y'know, fangirls and all that...

    1. TUT TUT TUT. I won't slaughter you alive yet...bc. Some people like Fangirl better. Maybe you will too. READ IT OKAY. okay? :P
      This one is by FAR more relatable ;)

  5. lol awesome review! I still haven't read a Rainbow Rowell book but I loved the quotes you shared so I think this one could be a winner!

    1. thanks and ACCCKKKKK read Eleanor & Park and Fangirl STAT! ;)

  6. eeeeee Fangirl was so GOOD!!! <3 I really loved it, except at some points, I didn't like Levi.... *PLEASEDON'TKILLMEH*


  8. I know this is late but I saw this in the 'you might also like' bit, so I'm not just being a crazy weirdo, but I picked this book up the other day in waterstones and was so tempted to buy it but having not read any other books by Rainbow Rowell, I didn't want to buy it and end up not liking it, but reading your review has made me reallllly want it now! I need to get my mitts on it! Anyway, great review! :)

  9. This book is so cute! I can extremely relate with Cath as well as you do. I think Rainbow meant to write this book for me, it's got all what I'm looking for on a contemporary book. Adorable couple, relatable protagonist and delightful romance.

  10. This book is so cute! I can extremely relate with Cath as well as you do. I think Rainbow meant to write this book for me, considering it has all what I usually look for on a contemporary romance book. Adorable couple, relatable protagonist and delightful romance!


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