Carry On by Rainbow Rowell is a hilarious, magical, and complex fantasy read for all ages! The main character, Simon Snow, is the chosen one-and bad at it. Despite it being his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, he still doesn’t know how to control his powers. With his best friend Penelope at his side, he has to battle a magic-eating monster, a breakup, and an elusive mentor. On top of that, his nemesis and roommate Baz (who may or may not be a vampire, but is definitely angsty enough to be) couldn't even be bothered to show up for school this year. Don’t be fooled by it’s seemingly juvenile plot, Carry On is just as much a serious take on identity as is it love story filled with mystery.
Originally, the story appeared as a fanfiction written by the main character in Rowell’s previous bestseller, Fangirl. Encouraged by her readers, Rowell developed the story into it’s own novel that can totally be read without reading Fangirl. However, if you want the full experience of it’s amazingness, I suggest reading both!
This is one of the most entertaining and memorable YA books I have read this year. I went into it thinking it would be really cheesy and predictable, but my mind was almost immediately changed. Rainbow Rowell is absolute magic when it comes to world building and her characters. She has a wonderful way of making each and every character connect with you in some way, to the point where I end every one of her books feeling like I personally know every character she introduced me to. It is for this reason, that I would even recommend this book to people who don’t usually read about magic or vampires. Carry On isn’t just magic and make out scenes (although those are spectacular), it is a surprisingly moving read that will leave you tearing up when you least expect it.