“Carry on, Carry on, as if nothing really matters…”-Bohemian Rhapsody, Queen3.5 out of 5 Stars
This book was a lot better than I thought. I’m apprehensive to reading things that are basically promo items for other books (cough, Fangirl, coughcough) or continuations of other series. I just don’t like them. I was also kind of confused because it is listed as a Fantasy novel, and I like Rowell for her Romance, but it turns out this is in fact another YA Romance, but because the main character is male, it is listed as fantasy. This is no fault of Rowell, simply the way publishing world works.
Summary from Goodreads:
Simon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.
Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story — but far, far more monsters.
It’s interesting to see an entire magical world built in one book. This book was supposed to the final book in a Middle Grade/YA Fantasy series, a la Harry Potter. This was well done. I just felt like some of the cliches that are often criticized in YA Fantasy were over looked here.
I get that this was supposed to be a companion novel, but it is still a novel. Some of the plot devices used were just…predictable and I feel like if it had been an honest to god attempt at a fantasy novel, it would never had made it past some unpaid literary agent intern’s slush pile.
The characters are what pulled this story through. Rowell is very good at characters and character development, but the relationship in this novel was just too forced. It was like, ‘well everyone knows it is going to happen because of Fangirl, so I don’t have to put forth much effort’.
So, I like it, but I didn’t love it. I saw every plot point coming from miles away, and the romance I love Rowell for was not entirely there. I will continue to read everything she writes though.