Rainbow Rowell blends three stories together from the world of Simon Snow. She has previously explored the fandom in another book, Fangirl. The world of Simon Snow is similar to that of Harry Potter and the Wizarding World, where Simon Snow is also a wizard. Simon Snow’s world is being threatened by the Insidious Humdrum, an evil and mysterious force. To defeat the Insidious Humdrum, Simon has to join forces with his arch nemesis, Baz. But Baz is missing, and despite being nemesises, Simon is worried about Baz. What happened to Baz? What is Simon feeling? And how do you defeat the Insiduous Humdrum?
The characters were all well-rounded – Simon Snow, Baz, Simon’s best friend Penelope, and his girlfriend Agatha. For the most part, it was from Baz and Simon’s point-of-view, with the occasional guest point of views from Agatha and Penelope, Baz’s ghost mother, and a few odd characters here and there. It was convenient and easy to read. However, it was clear where the story was coming from. The parallels to Harry Potter were very obvious. That being said, fans of Harry Potter, especially fans of Harry Potter fanfiction, would love this book.
I really loved the relationship between Penelope and Agatha, two of the book’s relatively overlooked characters. It was hateful and exasperating at times, but there were also times that the friendship between the two girls was clear. Their relationship could stand alone apart from Simon’s relationship with either one of the girls.
Reviewed by Ally, Grade 10, Twin Hickory Area Library