Geekerella by Ashley Poston

Posted September 17, 2020 by Amber in Reviews / 0 Comments

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Geekerella

Geekerella

by Ashley Poston

Series: Once Upon a Con #1
Publisher: Quirk Books on April 4, 2017
Genre: Contemporary, Fairytale Retellings, Retellings, Romance
Target Age Group: Young Adult
Rating: ★★★★★

Check out this book on Goodreads

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. 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 the 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.

 

I agree with you, universe… Geekerella is precious.

Ashley Poston nods to all the best parts of nerd culture (and acknowledges some of the bad parts, too).  Additionally, this is a fantastic retelling?  I’m not the biggest fan of Cinderella overall, but retellings and adaptations like this bring the story to life.  It’s a really good retelling of the watered-down version of the story (no red-hot iron shoes), and the split POVs brought the tension in the romance to a max.

Plus, you really get the sense that Ashley Poston’s been there, you know?  This is such a small example of “write what you know”, but even at this level… when it’s about being a fan and the love and importance of conventions… it brings the story to a whole new height.  Geekerella is a book about being in love with a fandom before all else.  And that’s its own kind of magic.  I really, really loved that about the story.

I don’t have a critical thing to say about this book, honestly.  It set out to tell the story of a girl whose broken heart is sloppily sewn together by the love of Starfield she shared with her (now deceased parents).  It’s about a boy who got to be a character he’s loved all his life, who gave him strength, even while the people around him are taking all his power away.  Both Elle and Darien are enjoyable characters to follow.

If this was almost any other kind of book, I’d probably criticize the insta-love aspects of the story and the extraordinary circumstances that pushed the romance and the plot.  However, Geekerella is a Cinderella retelling and I think that if things weren’t remarkably unlikely, it wouldn’t be a true retelling. The step-sisters are a great improvement over their fairytale selves (I find myself thinking more about Margeurite and Jacqueline from Ever After than Anastasia and Griselda from other Cinderella adaptations).  The minor characters shine here just as much as the leads – I want to see Sage get her own story, and even unnamed characters like Contestant 17 had left an impression.

Geekerella is light and fluffy and utterly enjoyable.  I can easily see myself going back to this one for a cozy comfort read.  Really enjoyed it.

Ratings Breakdown

Setting: ★★★★★
Plot: ★★★★★
Characters: ★★★★★
Writing: ★★★★★
Pacing: ★★★★★
Narrator: ★★★★★
Personal Enjoyment: ★★★★★

5 Star Rating

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Have you ever done cosplay?  I’m rubbish at staying in character and I don’t put enough time in to make accurate, impressive costumes… but I appreciate it so much and I’m missing seeing cosplayers this year.  Who would you cosplay as at a convention?

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