Let me (Lindsay) cut to the case, Carry On was a difficult read at the beginning and the end.
When I first read about Simon Snow in Fangirl, his inspiration was obvious – it consisted of 8 books revolving around a boy wizard chosen to defeat…something.” Insert eye rolls here, but I overlooked it in Fangirl. After all it wasn’t the main premise of the novel.
However, I could not overlook it in Carry On.
My main frustration stems from the fact that Carry On is based around a fictional character who was the subject of Harry Potter inspired fanfiction in another fictional character’s life from another book.
All of Rainbow’s die hards will argue that her world and characters in Carry On are different. Except they aren’t because they were inspired by HP in her Fangirl fanfiction. I’m feeling generous, so I will say Baz was his own character. Just don’t think about Draco Malfroy too hard.
In Rainbow’s author note she says this is her take on the whole “Chosen One” story. Except it’s not. This is her take on her previous book’s HP inspired fanfiction. If you really want to write your take on the whole “Chosen One” story then create your own world without wizards, and a school for young wizards where the protagonist defeats the bad guy with friends and an enemy. Some will try to tell me J.K. Rowling doesn’t own the wizarding world. TRY and tell me that.
Sigh. I can’t get off my soapbox.
Ok. I didn’t completely hate everything in Carry On. I got past calling it – her take on the “chosen one” story when in reality it is HP inspired fanfiction – around page 160. I made a conscious effort to just let it go, and found myself ever so slightly enjoying the story for what it was. I found Rainbow’s spells to be amusing and clever. Particularly some like it hot, U can’t touch this, make way for the king, these aren’t the droids you’re looking for, be our guest, etc.
I started to enjoy it, until I didn’t. The plot got lost, or rather died right when I figured out what was happening, and I felt the characters were left floundering at the end.
For me, this book never left the ground because it was never meant to leave the ground. It’s Harry Potter inspired fanfiction that got published and dubbed as the author’s take on the whole “Chosen One” story. Yay.
You can find Layne’s review of Fangirl on our blog. I promise she is the nicer half of Blake & Beckner.