Carry On by Rainbow Rowell – Book Review

Simon is an orphan and he’s also a magician, the most powerful magician, and he attends a secret magic school in the UK and… sound familiar? It really is, and this was bothering me a lot at the start. If I want to read Harry Potter, I could probably just do that, right? Still, I persisted, because I quite liked the characters and I wanted to see where it was going to go. Plus, Rainbow Rowell is a great author and I really like reading her books.

It was worth it – a good, magical romp. At the end, I discovered that Rowell wrote this book as she had created the main characters while writing another of her books, Fangirl, and wanted to then create the world of them. I wish I’d known that before, because I would have liked to read Fangirl first and entered their world the way Rowell did.

I’ll give Fangirl a go soon and see if having read this gives Carry On a different edge.

Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell – Book Review


It’s the mid eighties. Park is a misfit – Half-Korean in a very white part of Nebraska. He mostly avoids the bullies – and then Eleanor arrives. She’s big (although it seems perhaps that she is just well-developed), with red hair and wears strange clothes. They end up sitting together and, slowly, they start a friendship and eventually a romance. But Park doesn’t know what Eleanor’s life is really like, and she is scared to let anyone know…

I liked a lot about this book. I quite liked both the characters, and really wanted things to work out. There were some elements of the book that didn’t quite work for me – something that didn’t ring true. But it took very little to get past that and to just enjoy the journey. If you like young adult novels, check this out.