cover image Fangirl


Rainbow Rowell, read by Rebecca Lowman and Maxwell Caulfield. Listening Library, unabridged, 10 CDs, 13 hrs., $60 ISBN 978-0-8041-2128-6

Cath’s freshman year at the University of Nebraska does not begin well: her roommate is aloof and scary; her identical twin sister, Wren, ignores her in favor of beer and some airheaded new friends; and Cath has too much social anxiety to even find the cafeteria. Narrator Rebecca Lowman reads most of this coming-of-age novel, giving depth to Cath and many of the book’s other characters. One of the more delightful aspects of this audio production is the occasional appearance of Maxwell Caulfield, who is the narrator of the Harry Potter–like fantasy novels that Cath is obsessed with and upon which she bases copious fan fiction. Caulfield’s clipped tones poke gentle fun at Cath’s fixation without mocking it, and becomes comically seductive when he reads pieces of Cath’s fan fiction about the forbidden passion between her two main characters—vignettes that relate to elements in Cath’s own life. Ages 13–up. A St. Martin’s Griffin hardcover. (Sept.)