Review of Fangirl
By: Christina Creech
Fangirl is one of those stories, that anyone, that has an obsession or love of a beloved series, will understand. I gave it 5 out of 5 stars, because I laughed, I cried, I did nothing but start and finish this book in an 24 hours. I couldn’t put this book down, even if I wanted too.
For those that don’t know what this book is about here is the synopsis that I always steal from Goodreads: 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?
Cath is an internet star on a popular fan fiction site. She has a mass following, as every girl who is a fan of Simon Snow loves Cath’s interpretation of them. Simon Snow was her passion, it also provided her an escape from her real life, where she isn’t as popular.
She is a twin with her sister Wren, but everyone calls Wren, “the pretty one, or the better one.” Wren was the social one, always partying, and always drinking. She had too many boyfriends to count, and she didn’t seem to care. It was how she dealt with her life, aside from being her sister’s biggest fan, and beta reader.
They only had their dad, as their biggest supporter, and only parent. Their mother left them, on September 11th, decided she couldn’t handle being a mom, and they never fully recovered from that. They managed their way through life, dealing with it, the best way they knew how to. But, they never quite put all the pieces together.
Their dad works for advertising company and is very passionate about his work, and it gives clues that her father has bipolar disorder, from having manic issues, and going off the rail, and having to see a counselor, and have been in the mental hospital sometimes, and the girls were used to this routine. So, it seemed to have happened quite often.
Everything seemed to be going along fine, until they start their freshman year at Lincoln University. It is full of changes, that Cath has a hard time adjusting to. First, Wren doesn’t want to be her roommate, and she instantly hits it off, with her new one Courtney, and Cath is forced to meet people outside her comfort zone. Luckily, her good roommate Regan, forces her to meet Levi.
Levi, who always smiles, is constantly hanging out with Regan, in their dorm room. He aides Cath is emergencies, and walks her home from late night writing sessions with Nick, whom I was so angry at. I shipped him to be with Cath, until we learn what a total Jerk, he was. He was trying to take credit for Cath’s work, but at least their Professor was a smart one. She caught on to Nick’s game, and Karma caught up to him, and she pushed Cath, to become a better writer, and expand outside the world of fan-fiction.
Cath keeps her fan-fiction writing a secret until Levi finds out she writes fan fiction and totally obsesses about it, and has her read to her, just like he listens to the audiobooks. I root for both of them separately, and together.
Cath finding friends in Levi and Regan does help her branch out a little bit, especially since her estrangement, with Wren, who has been trying to act too cool for school lately to impress Courtney. She loves to party, and halfway through the semester she ends up in the hospital, someone brings her in, probably saving her life, but we never learn who, but it forces Cath to talk to her mom, whom she hasn’t seen in ten years, but whom, has been in contact with Wren.
Her mother can’t handle the stress, and leaves again, once Cath gets there, and once she knows that her dad is on the way, she bails, and Cath calls her out on it, which I think is totally deserved, because someone has to hold her accountable.
It was so wild to read this book, because what I thought was going to happen, didn’t. I didn’t think that Regan and Cath would get along, I thought Levi was a creeper. I thought Courtney was Wren’s new bffs, and I thought Nick was going to be a future co-author with Cath, and they would be the dream couple. But, I was so glad, I was wrong.
This book just has so many different types of personalities, and they are all so different, but they all end up joining Cath at the midnight release of the eighth Simon Snow book, and they are now bonded, not just through school, Simon Snow, that may have started the bond, but they chose to keep, and they help each other carry on long after the series will be over.
Rainbow Rowell, you just got yourself a new fan.