Thursday, April 6, 2017

Review: Geekerella by Ashley Poston

Ashley Poston
Release: April 4, 2017
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Geek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic sci-fi series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter. The prize? An invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball, and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck (and her dad’s old costume), Elle’s determined to win…unless her stepsisters get there first.

Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons—before he was famous. Now they’re nothing but autographs and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake—until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise. But when she disappears at midnight, will he ever be able to find her again?

Part romance, part love letter to nerd culture, and all totally adorbs, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom.

Every so often I read a book that makes me positively giddy with joy and all I can do is make heart-eyes at it whenever I see it in stores or on someone's bookshelf. Geekerella was such a book for me. I adored it so much! It was both a Cinderella retelling and a love letter to fandom and it was everything my nerdy little heart wanted from it.

This book had everything we've come to expect from a retelling of Cinderella: the horrible stepmother you can't help but hate, the mean stepsisters, the swoony Prince Charming, the fairy godmother, the ball, and a pumpkin turned into a coach. What I loved the most about this retelling is that we get to see the story unfold from the points-of-view of both Cinderella and Prince Charming! I was a little wary going into this because of all the hype this book was getting and the last few Cinderella retellings I've read were total disappointments. Who knew that a comic convention and fandom would make such a perfect setting for a modernized Cinderella?!?  

Our nerdy Cinderella, Elle, and Darien, our prince Charming, are both deeply into the world of Starfield, which was very much a mash-up of the Star Wars and Star Trek fandoms with a touch of Doctor Who thrown in for an even more dedicated fanbase. Due to their respective circumstances, they both have different views on the fandom that added more depth to the story.

While the retelling part was a little bit too on the nose, I enjoyed the heck out of it. This book follows texts, blogs, and various fandom things that were so relatable to those of us who are deeply involved in our own fandoms. While their connection was imperfect, I found myself rooting for Darien and Elle to get together and get their happily ever after. If you're a fan of fairy tale retellings, this is definitely one you need to add to your reading list. It's definitely a contender for one of my favorite books of the year.

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley.

  5 / 5 Stars

Recommended for fans of:
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell
Just Ella by Margaret Peterson Haddix

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