Rainbow Rowell has done it again!
Oh. My. God.
I've never been this excited with YA for such a looong time. The dialogue was sharp, the characters were well-rounded and funny, the story was solid and I love EVERY. BIT. Even Eleanor and Park hadn't done that to me. This is, by far, her best work. (I don't care if I've just read two of her books, I love this.)
Cath, a change-averse 18-year-old fanfiction author, start freshman this year and, naturally, she's rooming up with her 'hotter and prettier' twin sister. In which, she doesn't. Her sister wants them to meet new people since they've inseparable since high school. So she meets Reagan, her roommate, who occasionally brings 5 different men and Levi (my sweet, sweet Levi).
I'm gonna cut short now because if I don't, I'll be writing the whole story.
I have to be honest with you, the first 50% of the book I thought that neither Nick Nor Levi deserve Cath. I don't know, I guess I could right through them and knew that they would do something douche-y. I was right, ha!(show spoiler)
I was leaning towards Nick since they clicked together with their writing and I thought Levi was in an open relationship with Reagan. But, boy did I melt every time Levi picks up Cath from one of their writing meetings, especially the one when she hasn't even dialed yet for Levi.
This also made me reminisce the time when I was reading fanfiction. From animés to books (mainly Harry Potter), I would read them all. This was from the time when the internet was only through dial-up. I would go to the internet café to save fanfiction so I could read them offline at home OR I would copy saved fanfiction from my classmates and would plug them into OUR computer. That was with a floppy disk, mind you. Good times.
I loved the dynamics of Cath's family. It was believable and relatable. Their family wasn't perfect and so is Cath.(show spoiler)
Simon Snow very much reminded me of Harry Potter and then Levi goes on to mention Harry Potter gay fanfic. My brain just exploded. It reminded me of the time when I was also devouring fanfic after fanfic of the seventh Harry Potter book before it was released, and the feeling when it already came out.I was also in tears. This is so on point. I must say that they are good bits in Cath's fanfic. Cath wrote very well about them that I wish I could read her fanfics. I laughed at Baz' lines. No doubt I would read during those years.
This book also lets you peek into the life of an author. Cath is taking up a junior-level Fiction-Writing class and she may be a natural at it but there are also times that authors have a hard time or make a mistake or lose their 'mojo'. Realizing this, it makes me want to write even more. I was jealous of Cath because it seems that she did not struggle in the beginning of her writing. Oh well, I need to practice more.
Now we talk about Levi and Cath.
I can't keep my hands off them!! They were so cute and sweet and cuddly and cute and.. ok. I'm stopping.
I love the development of their relationship. The flirting from the time they met until to the time they were together. They were being cute and cheesy and all lovey-dovey and I did not feel like shoving them off a cliff. And, they were so smart that having the most mundane of details of their daily life is not boring. He really is a match for Cath. He always gets through to her. He is the sweetest but he is not without his flaws. I forgive him now.
And, Reagan. Now, this is the girl to aspire to
"Even without her makeup and hair, the girl was terrifying. There was just no fear in her. No hesitation. Talking to Reagan was like standing in front of an oncoming train."
Strong but soft, too.
I admit I held off in the last fifty pages. I read Eleanor and Park, they broke my heart. They left me wondering if they ever did got back together. The family issues were resolved. The love scenes were described. But not Fangirl. It's a whole new world with this. Same eccentric, lovable, relatable character and same squeal-worthy scenes but different.
This one hits too close to home. I laughed, I cried, I squealed. I am fangirling all throughout this. Read it.