BAMF Review: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

Posted January 30, 2016 by BAMF in BAMF Reviews, Reviews // 0 Comments

BAMF Review: Carry On by Rainbow RowellCarry On by Rainbow Rowell
Also by this author: Attachments
Published by St. Martin's Griffin on October 6th 2015
ISBN: 1250049555
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 522
Format: hardcover

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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.



For our first ever BAMF Review, we decided to read Rainbow Rowell’s CARRY ON. We approached the book with different past experiences. All of us loved Harry Potter, which is who Simon Snow, the main character, is based on. However, only Iris had read Fangirl, where Simon Snow was first introduced. Dani had read only one other Rainbow Rowell book, ELEANOR & PARK, while Jamie hadn’t read any. Jamie, however, was a huuuuge Harry/Draco fanfic fan, and, as you’ll see, this pairing is what inspired the book.

We all agreed that the book was a bit slow and confusing to start. The story begins with Simon heading to his final (8th) year at Watford; he reminisces about his years at the school and shares snippets of the adventures he’s had during that time as the Chosen One. Then, for over a hundred pages, Simon wanders about his school, looking for and obsessing over his missing roommate and nemesis, Baz. Nothing really happens except this obsessing and sharing stories about how he has previously fought with and stalked Baz in the past.

While the pace does pick up after Baz’s arrival, there were still a few gaps that weren’t completely filled in for the reader to be completely captivated by the story. Baz was the shining star of the book – we can all agree on this. It was almost as if Rowell didn’t really find the motivation to start the story until she introduced Baz into the mix. Once he arrived at the school and had his own point of view chapters, it was clear that the story was actually starting. However, because of the slow pace in the beginning that left the reader wanting more, Baz wasn’t quite enough to keep the story flowing and all readers engaged.

The actual plot seemed to be thrown together a bit as there were many pieces that were introduced, but not necessarily expanded upon or resolved. One of the main ones that we weren’t a fan of was the Lucy story line. We thought that there was a lot of potential to Lucy and her story, especially once Agatha found out a bit more, that was never really developed into anything. It was almost as if Lucy was written as an aside for the reader rather than an actual character in the book. As well, we were disappointed by the resolution of Simon finding out his “true” identity because we thought knowing the truth would have added to his character in a much better way than the addition of wings and a tail could do.

Dani and Iris were both fans of the development of the relationship between Baz and Simon, as they thought the build up from the beginning with Simon pining over Baz to kissing him was excellent. They liked that in this aspect of his life, Simon took charge and initiated the relationship rather than just waiting for someone else to tell him what to do. Jamie thought that the relationship seemed a bit forced when it did actually start, but was glad overall that they got together. However, she was upset by the bi-erasure that took place when their relationship started.

Being a parody of Harry Potter, all three of us were happy with the parallels we saw between the two books, as well as the way that the spells were created and cast. The idea of language being the power behind the spells was one thing that all three of us agreed upon as being a great aspect and something unique for this world.

Overall, it was a very easy YA fantasy (with very contemporary leanings), and despite being over 500 pages, we could all finish the book very quickly! We can recommend this book to all fans of Rainbow Rowell and sweet romances.

BAMF Breakdown

Next time, see Dani, Iris and Jamie BAMF Review THE LOVE THAT SPLIT THE WORLD by Emily Henry.

Dani hopes that she’ll be better at editing videos next time… 😀

Bonus time!

Jamie is a fan fiction addict, and the first fanfic she ever read was a Harry Potter x Draco Malfoy pairing! She still rereads it from time to time, and she’s sharing it with you all today. 😀

Starts With a Spin

Author: Maxine

Rating: Mature

Summary: It started with the spin of a bottle, and now Harry and Draco have gotten themselves so far into their own game there’s almost no way out again. Except to keep playing.

About Rainbow Rowell

Rainbow Rowell writes books. Sometimes she writes about adults (ATTACHMENTS and LANDLINE). Sometimes she writes about teenagers (ELEANOR & PARK and FANGIRL). But she always writes about people who talk a lot. And people who feel like they’re screwing up. And people who fall in love.

When she’s not writing, Rainbow is reading comic books, planning Disney World trips and arguing about things that don’t really matter in the big scheme of things.

She lives in Nebraska with her husband and two sons.

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