Title: Carry On
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Date Started: February 9
Date Finished: February 13
Format: Hardcover from my shelf
Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen. That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right. Half the time Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here – it’s their last year at Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up. Carry On is a love letter to love stories and the power of words – to every ‘chosen one’ who ever had more on their mind than saving the world…
When I was originally reading Fangirl and read about Cath’s obsession with the Simon Snow series, I wanted to read the books too. It almost sounded like Harry Potter with maybe a few differences. And I even tweeted Rainbow about it too, so when I heard about this book I was really excited. I think my excitement might have overwhelmed me, because when I actually read this book I was completely frustrated. Don’t get me wrong, Carry On is good in its own special way, but there’s a lot of mystification going on. You’re basically dropped into the Simon Snow universe just as it’s really ending. Simon is in his last year of school at the Wateford School of Magicks and a lot of stuff has been going on. He has an enemy – the Insidious something or other – that no one can quiet figure out. His nemesis Baz is a piece of work who he has to live with. And then there’s the mysterious Mage who doesn’t give a lot of answers like a certain other headmaster we know.
The only difference between this and Harry Potter I think is that no one really gets a happily-ever-after. The Mage turns out to be a villain. Baz and Simon’s love story is actually quite vomit inducing, once they start all the snogging. And Simon’s sidekicks – Penelope and Agatha – are just that. Sidekicks. I don’t think there’s an admirable trait to any of them. At all.
Final Rating: 3 out of 5 stars. The characters are well branched out, even if we don’t really see that on the page. The story is quite confusing with a lot of gloss over since this is supposed to be the ‘last book’ of the Simon Snow series. And I’m still not completely sure I understood that ending. Shockingly enough though I did like the story. Just not enough for four or five stars.
Bookshelf worthy? Support your local library!