I’ve been wanting to read Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell for oh about three years but when I finally got hold of her couple of her books they were her adult fiction. I enjoyed them and was pretty sure the book that made her reputation would be better.
Somehow I could never get my hands on a library copy though.
Then suddenly, I spotted Fangirl in the kids section of all places. I grabbed it and ditched one of the picture books I’d picked out for the kids. V rolled his eyes at me.
And I loved it. This book goes on my virtual must read (again) bookshelf. It’s nothing profound, but just the quirkiness of the characters and the authenticity of the experience (the disorientation of freshmen year in a college dorm if youre an introvert) itself. There’s also the whole wanting to be a writer part, loving, nay needing to write that I identified with. And And certain kinds of writing not being given due credit. Then there’s the sisterhood conflict and that always gets me. But what really got to me was the fact that she had two other books going on in that story – excerpts from the Simon Snow fantasy series (a thinly veiled Harry Potteresque phenomenon) and the fanfic that the main character – the Fangirl of the title – writes. Whatever one feels about YA a genre it’s takes some writing chops to do that.
Then I read Eleanor and Park. I enjoyed it, a sweet teenage love story, an interesting even original one that is also about being a misfit, but I didn’t love it as much as Fangirl. Read both, I’d say.