Okay, I am totally on board the Rainbow Rowell train now- because how could I not be after reading “Carry On”??!?! I wanted to write a full review, but, as anyone who has read the book will understand, I’m just feeling too jittery (partly because I read it in one sitting and stayed up most of the night to finish it). Honestly, I had heard good things about it before I read it, but I never expected to like it *this much*.
So, just as Simon has a list of reasons at the beginning of the book of why he’s looking forward to going back to school, here’s my list of ten reasons why this book is un-frickin’-believable:
- It’s ingenious. At first I thought it was overcomplicated, but as the plot developed and all the little strands started to come together, I realised just how perfect it was.
- Because it’s self-aware. It’s not like any other fantasy about another “chosen one”. Rowell is perfectly aware how cliché and overused these tropes are, so she takes that concept and flips it on its head. Some people think it’s derivative (of Harry Potter in particular). But that’s the whole point- it knows exactly where it stands in the genre and takes full advantage of that. I haven’t read Fan Girl, but I can see how it plays into the idea of fanfiction by transforming an already well-known concept. It’s so meta. Rainbow Rowell really knows her craft.
- The world-building. At first I thought, being a parody and all, that the world-building might be sub-standard. Boy was I dead wrong. I have to say that the way they do magic in this book is one of my *absolute favourite* magical concepts out there. Because I love words, and in this book, words have power. And onto the subject of words…
- The humour and the writing. All the dialogue has a lovely witty edge to it and there are so many laugh out loud moments I wasn’t expecting.
- The plot’s all twisty and intriguing. There are so many twist and turns and unbelievable concepts thrown into the mix. There were points when I thought I was on track with what was going on, but there were so many times when it caught me by surprise. And on top of that it’s jam packed with action and excitement. It’s just epic! And so unexpected, but not as unexpected as…
- The romance. I won’t say anything more about that here- this is spoiler free after all- just… oh my goodness… the feels!! And speaking of the feels…
- Baz!!! I have no words to express my feelings for this character. He is absolutely everything you want in a character- he is both good and bad meshed together- and so dynamic! Speaking of characters…
- The other characters are brilliant too. I love how the villains and heroes are so ambiguous. And all of them are so complex and very, very real. I feel like I know them all. And I’ve only read this book once (so far- cos I’m gonna have to go back and reread this- and then I’m gonna have to read it again).
- And I love their relationships with each other. Not just the romantic ones, but the friendships too. And finally, the main reason why this book rocks is…
- Because it left me both satisfied and wanting more. And you don’t get much better than that when you read. It is the best compliment any book can receive.
So, yeah, in case you haven’t guess, I loved this book. I suppose giving this rating is a bit of a foregone conclusion at this point. Ah well, it deserves it:
Rating 5/5 bananas
To be honest, I’d like to give Rainbow Rowell a whole crate of bananas after reading this.
Have you read this book? Are you as crazy in love with it as I am? Let me know in the comments below?
(I feel like I might need to start a support group or something)