Keep Calm and 'Carry On', Simon Snow

Friday, January 8, 2016


Carry On

Author: Rainbow Rowell

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.

City of Magical Peoples
A town with gay Harry Potters. (It's the truth. Don't deny it.) Of magic and Chosen Ones. Of handsome and sneering vampires and scatterbrained magicians with unimaginable amounts of power. A town with old families trying to overthrow the man on top who just wants a world for magics and mages.
"Okay. Simon was chill. I liked that. He was the worst Chosen One. But he was snarky and funny. He reminds me of Yuui from Owari no Seraph. Just a little. He was so perfectly imperfect. He wasn't this extremely handsome guy. He wasn't extremely smart. He wasn't great at magic. In fact, he was terrible at magic. It was great to have this main character who wasn't made in the image of perfection. It was something new.
"And Lucy's chapters. I just adored those. It was great to learn the past through her story. The Davy thing was so cool. It was interesting to see Davy in a different light. Lucy adored him. Maybe she was really in love with him. Her last chapter revealed so much. It was a little saddening as well. She was dead and just wanted to talk to her beloved son. Why wasn't she allowed to do that?
"The way they summoned magic was different, but I thought it was cool. If I was in this world, I'd be the worst Mage ever. I'm not very good at finding my words, so I'd be trying out a new spell and not find the right word and just say 'thing' instead and screw things up. I loved seeing all the phrases used to summon magic. Some old and some new. I'd just make up a whole new batch of spells from my unique phrasing and diction. (I say odd things. For example, I use pizzacake as a curse word. And I say "You're being summoned.") And they'd all be horrible and metaphorical. I'm so weird. And that's the gospel truth.
"I was conflicted on the plot. It was very anticlimactic, but it was interesting in the beginning and middle. The end was too rushed, though. Why wasn't there a cool battle scene? I'd like that. Mage versus Simon versus Humdrum. Or is it the other way around? I wasn't quite sure. Can you fight incorporeal beings? How do you fights ghosts anyways? Hope for the best? Ugh. That's just messing with my head. But the beginning was great. The murder mystery drew me in. Who killed Baz's mom? Why? And why was he kidnapped? I actually figured things out before the characters did, and when they realized the truth, I was thinking, 'Took you long enough.'
"I hated that I felt like I was missing something. There were other Humdrum attacks. Simon destroyed things. Baz tried to kill him. It's like reading Harry Potter from the last book to the first. (Which I sorta did. I read the last book after the first. I never actually finished the series, though. Haha. Don't hurt me.) It felt like that. So much had happened outside the book. I wanted to know what happened, but these things were barely touched upon. We really need a series about just Simon's younger years. What was he like as a little thing? Hm, I wonder...
"And the multiple PoVs was distracting. I couldn't focus on the plot itself. So much was happening. I was trying to rein in my thoughts, but then I'd get hit with some information from Baz or Penny, and I'd be sent back to square one. It was a mind trick to try and keep track of things. I sorta gave up in the end. I just read. Carry on, am I right?
"Overall, it wasn't a bad book. I didn't have high expectations or anything. My expectations were met. But I wasn't completely in love. I know people will cry diversity, but the romance was lacking. I won't touch upon that, though. I always complain about that anyways. So not the best but not the worst. A Penny sort of book. Haha."

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