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Vladimir Nabokov, Craig Raine
Fangirl - Rainbow Rowell To be honest, I have no idea whether or not I liked [b:Fangirl|16068905|Fangirl|Rainbow Rowell|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1355886270s/16068905.jpg|21861351]. I liked it much better than I did [b:Eleanor & Park|15745753|Eleanor & Park|Rainbow Rowell|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1341952742s/15745753.jpg|17225055] so that was definitely a plus. My enjoyment waves went up and down throughout the novel, which makes this a rather hard one to rate. Sometimes the way she phrased things was a bit weird and the dialogue was of the sort where I felt like I was reading book dialogue, if that makes sense. Like everything was planned out and calculated instead of being dialogue. It's not something usually noticeable to me but it was here. But I think this is the sort of situation where a lot of the problems had more to do with me than the actual book, so be prepared for a some personal anecdotes and a lot of rambling. On a shallow level, Cath is the sort of fangirl I really can't stand. The big name fan/slasher who is kind of obnoxious about how much she thinks/talks about Simon Snow and is very open about her involvement with everyone. The me from ten years ago, the one who was obsessed with Harry Potter and was super involved in fandom would have been so thrilled with all of that, and I think a big part of that was that (minus the BNF/slasher bit) I could relate SO MUCH of my past self to Cath but in the most frustrating way possible to who I am right now. The fandom escape and obsession and making that the priority over schoolwork, like when she decided that failing her creative writing class was less important than working on her fanfiction because she was too scared to write her own stuff, and even started to do that when offered a second chance made me want to shake some sense into her the entire time. I could see myself in her relationship with her mother and her sister (especially when they both have different ways of responding to the whole mother thing and end up pushing each other away because of it), I could see myself in how in control she had to be in terms of partying/boys/other people and how she pushed others away, her uncertainty if her college is the right place for her at first because it's not clicking the way she wanted it to, and how she let things in her personal life get in the way of her academic life. She made some of the same mistakes I did, at a somewhat worse level. Yet somehow, despite seeing so much of myself in Cath, I still feel like I don't really know her. That might be another part of my frustration with the book, my ability to almost but not quite connect to her. Finally, I had some problems with the pacing. [b:Fangirl|16068905|Fangirl|Rainbow Rowell|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1355886270s/16068905.jpg|21861351] was 433 pages, yet the ending seemed really abrupt to me and the middle dragged and did we really need so many pages of her fanfiction excerpts? There could have just been a mention of her reading her story out loud instead of actually having everything she read actually be there. It's like when Dorian from [b:The Picture of Dorian Gray|5297|The Picture of Dorian Gray|Oscar Wilde|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1320467562s/5297.jpg|1858012] read a book within a book, it's not that interesting to me as the reader and can we just get to the main story already! It definitely could have used some stronger editing, it didn't need all 433 pages.