Title: Carry On
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Published by: St. Martin’s Griffin
Publication date: 6th October 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance, LGBT
A rundown of the star characters:
Simon Snow: the Chosen One; incapable of picking up on subtleties; terrible at spells but brilliant at blowing things up; the Mage’s heir; shares the same face as the Humdrum (a threat to the wizarding world), and obsessed with the thought that his roommate, Basilton Pitch, is a vampire and is constantly plotting to kill him.
Basilton Pitch: Sarcastic, moody, scared of fire and the dark, often plotting to get rid of Simon Snow and also hopelessly, deeply in love with him.
The story starts with Simon on his way back to the Watford School of Magicks, ready to see his best friend Penelope and his girlfriend Agatha after spending the summer away from them. But when Baz doesn’t show up to school for two months, he becomes paranoid as Baz must be plotting Simon’s downfall, right? Plus, the Mage is behaving strangely and has basically locked himself away, despite having a school to run.
After Simon is visited one night by Baz’s mother’s ghost with an urgent message, he decides to make a pact with Baz and stop fighting until they can set their world right again. Turns out, working together isn’t so bad after all, and their years of hatred and scheming against each other were never powered by ill feelings.
Carry On by Rainbow Rowell is absolutely wonderful and full of cheeky humor and endorphin filled scenes and conversations. It’s basically fan fiction brought to life. You can’t help but fall in love with the characters, especially Baz and Simon. The whole dynamic of their relationship is crazy and messy and imperfectly perfect. I had no qualms with this book. Sure, there are some similarities between Carry On and the Harry Potter series, but I think they’re pretty easy to overlook. There isn’t much else to do except let the story carry you around on an ocean of feels every time you read it.
“Even some of our cookbooks are banned. (Though it’s been centuries, at least, since the Pitches ate fairies.) (You can’t even find fairies anymore.) (And it isn’t because we ate them all.)
“I glance over at him; he still looks like something I want to eat.”
“It’s always fire with Baz. I can’t believe he hasn’t incinerated me yet.”
“The whole prophecy is bollocks,” I say. “‘And one will come to end us. And one will bring his fall.’ Did I also bring my own fall?”
“No,” Baz says. “That was me. Obviously.”
“How did you bring my fall? I stopped the Humdrum myself.”
Baz looks back at his phone, bored. “Fell in love, didn’t you?”
“May you fight your own battles and forge your own wings.”
If you’ve read Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell and didn’t like the excerpts of Cath’s fan fiction, let me tell you this: Carry On is completely different in almost every way. It’s important to remember that Cath’s writing was fan fiction. This is the ‘real’ thing and it is fantastic. I loved this book, more than I loved Fangirl, and I think everyone should give it a chance.