Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

I have this little thing, called a blog? And I used to write about books? And then one day I just stopped.

And then one day I just started again. So here we go. Bear with me, I'm incredibly rusty.

by Rainbow Rowell
St. Martin's Griffin, 2013
422 pages

Once upon a long time ago I read a book called Fangirl. It was one of the first books I read this year, in fact. And I loved it. The end.

No no, there's more - and I'm not going to do the book justice, of course, because I read it nearly a year ago, but here's the thing: I read this nearly a year ago, quite quickly, and I still think about it regularly and with a fair amount of clarity. The thing is, it's not just a nice book - and it is, a really nice book, where nice things happen and people are kind and awkward and lovely and maybe sometimes a bit mean but they aren't just awful for no reason. They all have reasons, and they are all sympathetic, even when they are not good reasons. There's no forced love triangle, there's no insta-love, there's no easy answers; there are just good people trying to work their way around being individuals and members of families and friends, which is not always easy and provides enough drama to make an engaging, charming, intelligent book.

More than just being a nice book, Rowell's writing makes the reading of it seem effortless. It's an easy read. It goes down smoothly. It's funny in the right parts, and tense in the right parts, and moving in the right parts. The pacing is absolutely dead on. I was worried that the excerpts from Cath's fanfic would stall things, or be uncomfortable to read (in the way that fiction-within-fiction can sometimes just be... weird) but those excerpts were delightful. I can see why people want to read more Simon Snow.

Me, I'll be reading more Rowell, regardless of whom she's writing about. Thoroughly enjoyed, highly recommended.


Nan said...

Twilight Zone music here... I am in the process of writing a draft of a book report on The Housekeeper and the Professor, and I noted that I bought the book after reading your review three years ago. I ended my sentence by saying that you 'weren't writing much anymore.' I thought I'd pop over hoping that maybe you had written something, and here it is!! Yay! I've seen Rowell's name a lot, but haven't gotten interested enough to read her until your post. Thank you!

Unknown said...

Nan! Hello! How did you like The Housekeeper and the Professor?! (I can wait until you're done your report!) Rowell is lovely, I think that you'd like Fangirl. I can't say the same for any of her others as I haven't read them yet... but Fangirl is quite sweet.

I really am going to try to write more. It's been a very full year and I lost my will to blog, for whatever reason (I can't really put my finger on it.) So I decided to just leave it until the will came back. And it has! It's just more about the time and energy now.

Nan said...

I quit writing the book report. I am just too busy these grammy-days to join challenges! But I did love the book, in all the ways you did - the calm, the quiet, and I did love all those numbers!

Anonymous said...

I have been also checking now and then for updates! So I am happy to see you back!

"Fangirl" seems fun book, I might try it out (even if there already are too many books waiting for their time)

Ana S. said...

Aw, this post is lovely and gets it exactly right. RAINBOW ROWELL FOREVER. I need to get to Carry On ASAP.

Also, hi! <3

Unknown said...

Hi guys! /me waves excitedly

"even if there already are too many books waiting for their time"

I believe this is the story of my life. :) Fangirl's definitely a worthy addition to the list though. It reads very quickly, too.