My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Publication Date: October 6th 2015
Publisher: St-Martin’s Griffin
Point of View: 1st Person & Alternative
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, Magic, LGBT, Boarding School, Friendship, Romance, Destiny, Vampires
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 the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.
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.
I demand a sequel.
The fun can’t just end. The story must continue. Simon and Baz shall date and get married and have kids and… and… !
Alright, let’s not be too clamorous about this. What we have here is a fantasy. Or rather, my fantasy. But really, who never dreamed of sharing a room with a mysterious and handsome boy who constantly gets on your nerves but who’s secretly head over heels for you?
Simon has that. But… he’s clueless. And Baz sure won’t say anything about his feelings for him because 1. He’s the villain, 2. Baz and Simon’s destinies are to kill each other and 3. Simon’s not gay.
But then something happens, obliging them to make a pact interdicting them to slice each other’s heads off. And now they’re together… In the same places… And they…
Don’t know what they’re doing. It’s so much fun.
And you know what’s surprising? There’s actually a plot. Yes, you heard me: a plot not only there to fill gaps, but one that really helps to understand the characters and gives dept to the story, surprisingly.
When I first started it, I kept comparing it to Harry Potter. Honestly, it’s impossible not to. The only thing is, the book knows it’s a fanfiction story and it feels that way, meaning the writing is casual… very contemporary-like and, even if the majority of the characters take themselves seriously, the reader can’t help but see humour everywhere.
It’s in the spells, which are really just a bunch of idioms and song lyrics.
It’s in the magic: wings that sprout out of someone’s back, teleportation, flying… it’s all for the reader’s entertainment.
It’s in the world-building: wizards turned into vampires, numphies who kidnap people for ransom, an heir who can’t keep his magic in control… anything you can imagine.
And I liked that. I liked the fact that Rainbow Rowell didn’t hold back from creating whatever scenes she wanted because she feared they would be too silly. It’s silly, but it’s a good and, strangely, convincing type of silly.
I didn’t want to stop reading it. It puts the reader in such a wonderful mood and let me tell you that, even if the romance takes time to appear, when it does, it’s hard not to notice it.
As in, you will LOVE Simon & Baz.