"Carry On" by Rainbow Rowell Review/Recommendation1:43 PM
Searching for a fantasy book that is equally warm, fuzzy, and hysterical? I'm writing to tell you about Rainbow Rowell's new novel, Carry On. It fits all of the above to a T.
What's interesting about this novel, is that the cast of characters actually exists in her last young adult novel, Fangirl. Rowell decided after finishing Fangirl that she had to tell these character's stories. And boy, did she ever. The plot was originally a fanfiction of various existing published fantasy series.
Simon Snow is back for his last year at Watford, a magikal school in the midst of a Normal world. Upon return, he expects many things - delicious scones, reuniting with his girlfriend and best friend, Agatha and Penny, and, of course, his horrible, vampire roommate, Tyrannus Basilton "Baz" Pitch.
Simon hates Baz with all he has, despises him to the point of obsession. When Baz fails to come back to Watford that year, Simon wonders what plan he has up his sleeve.
There are dark forces in the magikal world. The Insidious Humdrum, a villain leaving behind areas void of magik whenever he attacks, took Simon and Penny the year before. To their shock, the Humdrum looks exactly like the one chosen to defeat him, Simon. Back at school this year, the Mage (the head of the school and the magikal world) thinks Simon should go away for the year to be in hiding. That's the last thing Simon wants to do. He needs to stay at Watford to enjoy his last year and find out where Baz is and what he's up to.
In a story that is equally funny as it is mysterious, Rowell captivates her readers. I have loved reading every single one of her novels, and was hesitant that this was her first fantasy genre book. To my pleasure, it was just as good, if not better, than her previous books. The plot-twists and backstories are well thought out, the characters are diverse and likable, and the world of her creation is one you wish you lived in.
I give Rainbow Rowell 5/5 stars for Carry On.
I recommend this book to Harry Potter lovers, those who enjoyed any of Rowell's other YA books, fans of light fantasy, and just any teen in general. I do warn that the book contains bisexual characters and a few descriptions could be considered graphic depending on what the reader has been exposed to in the past.
Thanks for reading,