Okay, so everyone loved Eleanor & Park and raved about it for months. Then, Fangirl arrived and was heralded with even MORE praise. Well, I have a confession to make: I hated Eleanor & Park. I was prepared to write off Rainbow Rowell off forever. But then… I succumbed to the peer pressure that is booktube and the book bloggers. They said that Fangirl is the anthem for every nerd girl who grew up loving Harry Potter… and they were right! I loved Fangirl. It was fresh, funny, and, oh-so-cute!
I related so much to the main character, Cath. I had a hard time adjusting when I went to college and I did end up taking some time off. I thought Rowell did a fantastic job of capturing the trials of a highly introverted, socially anxious person. She also created the ultimate nerd girl who is not ashamed to be one! For me, the most enjoyable part of the novel was getting to see Cath grow and building some relationships outside of her sister and Dad. Her interactions with Levi and Reagan were quite hilarious. I have a friend who is a lot like Reagan and I can attest that she helped me grow out of my shell.
Besides being a great portrayal of the struggles of a person with social anxiety, there are wonderful comedic moments as well as some ooey, gooey romance that makes you want to squeal and jump up and down! I thought that this book was great balance between the serious and the fun. In my eyes, Rainbow Rowell redeemed herself with this book.
The only thing that I did not really like were the excerpts from the Simon Snow novels and Cath’s fan-fiction at the beginning of every chapter. I found them distracting and they did not add anything to the story. To me, they were almost over-the-top in their parody of Harry Potter. The universe did not seem believable to me.
However, I thought this book was a fun, light-hearted read. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys Stephanie Perkins’ books or is on the lookout for an easy, uplifting book to read.