As Cath enters her dorm room on her first day of college she is immediately greeted by Levi, the overly friendly boyfriend (?) of her surly upperclassman roommate Reagan. Cath is less than thrilled. For the first time she will not be sharing a room with her twin sister Wren, who is ridiculously excited to experience all things college. The one thing she can still take comfort in is Simon Snow (think Harry Potter) and the fanfiction she has been carefully crafting for him over the years – and Cath isn’t just writing for herself, on the fanfiction site she has thousands of followers reading, commenting, and dying to see her next installments.
Content with keeping her head down, going to class, and surviving on peanut butter and power bars (seriously, she decides it’s just easier to not deal with figuring out the dining hall), however, Reagan finally takes pity on Cath and drags her down to get real food, and cautiously Cath makes a few friends. However, when her fiction writing professor lets her know that she thinks fanfiction is no more than plagiarism, and family matters become uncertain and chaotic, Cath begins to question how much she really wants a “college experience,” or if she’d rather just spend her time concerning herself with Simon Snow.
Almost all the characters Rowell has created in Fangirl are substantial enough to have their own story. Wren can seem frustrating (and even at times uncaring), but she does make some valid points about Cath’s college experience and it is clear that (whatever they may be) Wren is working through some of her own issues. These are characters I wanted keep hanging out with even after I finished the book and I have a new found interest in checking out some fanfiction.