Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are

7:30 AM

Summary of Carry On

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.


Carry On is the second book I've read by Rainbow Rowell, and I plan to read more of her books in the future. While I liked Fangirl better, I still enjoyed reading Carry On. Before I "carry on" with this review (sorry, I couldn't resist the pun), I think it important to note that you should probably read Fangirl before you read Carry On because Carry On is a sort of companion novel to Fangirl. Basically, one of the characters in Fangirl is writing fan fiction, and the book Carry On is the fan fiction she was writing. I kind of wish it said something to that effect on the cover of Carry On because I almost read Carry On before I read Fangirl. It would probably be okay if you read Carry On first, but I think you'll get more out of the book if you read Fangirl first. Okay, now I can "carry on."

Carry On is supposed to be similar to Harry Potter. I knew that going into the book, and I'm glad that I did. Otherwise, I might've been one of those people saying, "What a rip off! This is just like Harry Potter." It is just like Harry Potter because that is the writer's intention. That being said, I was happy to see that there are some marked differences between the Harry Potter books and Carry On. I like that in Carry On, there's more overlap between the "magikal" and "normal" world. The spells in Carry On are all based on cliches, popular phrases, songs, and quotes from literature. Characters use spells like "Come out, come out, wherever you are", "These aren't the droids you're looking for", "Out, out, damned spot", and "Some like it hot." The spells are easily one of my favorite parts of the book.

Carry On is very much a character driven book. While I was reading, I found myself more interested in the relationships between characters than with the actual plot. I think this was partly because for the first quarter of the book, there's a lot of characters sitting around waiting for a specific character to show up. The anticipation is built up so much that all you really care about is finding out what happened to this one character. Or, at least, that's all I cared about. The story really doesn't pick up until after you find out what happened to that character. Because I was so interested in the relationships between different characters, I found myself wishing Rainbow Rowell had written the entire series of books whose events are casually referenced to throughout Carry On. The characters will reference "fighting a chimera in year 5", and I'll find myself wishing I could read that book. Basically, I wanted more.

All in all, Carry On was an enjoyable read from the characters and spells alone. All's well that ends well.

I gave Carry On by Rainbow Rowell 4 out of 5 stars on goodreads.

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