Author: Rainbow Rowell
First Published: October 6th 2015
Series: Stand Alone
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Romance
Available As: Hardcover, paperback, ebook
My Copy: Physical copy
My Rating: 8/10
When I first read about Simon Snow in Fangirl, I thought it was a complete rip off on Harry Potter. But once I picked up Carry On, I realized that it wasn't. There are some similarities, but mostly different.
Simon Snow is the Chosen One. But is he necessarily a good one? I'd say he sucks at his job. He's deemed to be the greatest mage the world has ever seen, but he can barely keep his powers together. Okay, understandable. But what else does he do? Every time he runs into a problem, he just goes to the Mage for help. Well done Simon! Honestly, it's like he doesn't know how to solve his own problems.
There's a main protagonist in Carry On: the Insidious Humdrum. From the beginning, we're told that it is the greatest evil the world will ever face and that Simon is the only one who can defeat it. It's pure evil - but is it really? *spoiler alert* Later on in the book, we find out that the Humdrum is in fact, Simon. Well, not exactly. The Humdrum is another version of Simon, which still takes me a while to wrap my head around. And how did Simon defeat this other him? He transferred all his magic into the Humdrum, causing it to (erupt?) die. That leaves Simon with no magic. *spoiler over*
One major part of the plot is the tension between Simon and Baz. Simon seems to have already made up his mind about Baz: evil, vampire, enemy. They hate each other. Until they don't. Teaming up to find the killer of Baz's mother, they slowly form a truce, which leads to a (somewhat) friendship, which leads to their real romantic relationship. Stage 1 to 2 lasts for like a couple of chapters, then 2 to 3 in a couple of sentences. Come on, Rainbow Rowell! Where's my chemistry? The fluff? Where has it all gone?!
So yeah, a bit disappointed how there was no build, no chemistry between Simon and Baz until Rainbow Rowell says there is. Hmph :(
There are alternating POVs in Carry On, from characters like Simon, Baz, Penelope, Agatha, the Mage, Lucy and some others. I think the most interesting POV to read from is Lucy's, because for half of the book, we really have no idea what role she plays in the plot. Then we find out. I didn't like Agatha's POV, mainly because I didn't like Agatha as a character. I don't quite know why - I just don't like her vibe :P
I really liked how the book ended. It wasn't too rushed nor too dragged out. Some authors tend to drag out the ending way too much. Some rush it in a couple of paragraphs. Ah well.
Oh yes, the spells in Carry On are quite amusing to read. Unlike Harry Potter, the spells in the World of Mages are well-known phrases in English, such as "There's nothing to see here!" and "As you were!" Honestly, it made life easier because you could deduce what the spells meant, but there lacked the 'mysterious magical feeling' that is present in other Fantasy books with spells.
All in all, I think Carry On is a great book that is definitely worth the read!
My Chosen Quote: