Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (audio)

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 loved this book, just like I've loved every Rainbow Rowell book I've read (Eleanor and Park is the best). This was only one of her books that I've listened to on audio and the problem with that is that I only get to listen to the book on my commute and on the occasion I get to go somewhere by myself. And it's hard when you are listening to a book this good to get out of the car. I thought about switching to the book version but I was enjoying the narration too much. Rebecca Lowman and Maxwell Caulfied each do an excellent job though Caulfield only read the Simon Snow parts with Lowman picking up the remainder of the book told in Cath's voice. 

Cath is such a great character and I really felt for her. Thrown into an unfamiliar situation with some sort of undefined anxiety disorder (probably) it's hard for her. Not to mention her sister almost abandons her once they get to college and her father gives her plenty of reason to worry already. It's a lot for Cath and she retreats to her familiar Simon Snow fan fiction for comfort. I liked how Cath is a fairly straightforward person and how she manages to handle a lot of social situations better than others might. I love how loyal she is and how she wants to take care of her family even when they don't want to let her. And I love Levi. He is a great guy and I was rooting for the two of them even when he makes a big mess of it. 

It was pretty amazing how Rowell invented a whole series of books and then wrote fan fiction around it. I liked the excepts from both the Simon Snow books and from Cath's Simon Snow fan fiction. I loved that. I kind of made me wish I could read the Simon Snow books. But that is a fantastic imagination to come up with all of that to tell Cath's story.

read by Rebecca Lowman and Maxwell Caulfield. 12 hours, 82 minutes

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