Author: Ashley Poston
Genre: Young Adult, Romance
Publisher: Quirk Books
Release Date: April 4th, 2017
Length: 320 pages | 10 hours, 33 minutes
Geek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic science-fiction 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 has 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.
This one hit all my sweet spots: fairytale retelling, geek-centric, authentic voice, believably diverse cast, and sweet romance. I do adore a geek-centric story, when it comes from an honest fandom voice. My favorite is still (by far) The Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love, but this one is definitely in my top three. Here’s why:
♥ It’s clever, but it sticks true to elements of Cinderella (especially the Ever After version), so while the major plot points were obviously going to happen, the hook and tension was in the details.
♥ The text conversations/flirtations between Elle and Darien were sweet, funny, and believable.
♥ Both main characters- heroine and hero- were developed. This isn’t just Elle’s show.
♥ While the verbal abuse, manipulation, and controlling nightmare of Elle’s house is present, it isn’t the primary focus. It doesn’t serve to develop her as a character more than her love for her deceased father, which feels authentic both to reality and to the original character of Cinderella (who has to have been clinging to something hopeful).
♥ There’s representation of the fandom community, both the good (community help) and the bad (“you aren’t geek enough because you’re a girl” b.s.)
♥ Everyone not a villain has to take risks in this story in order to experience wonderful things. I think that’s as important of a message for side characters as it is for main characters.
In short, it’s a sweet, believable romance. If you go to cons or write fanfic or are a fan of Firefly, Star Trek, BSG, etc., you’ll enjoy it that much more. I recommend it for fans of contemporary YA romance, fairytale retellings, and the fandom community (especially those of us who grew up on scifi, thanks to our fathers).