Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde
Published by: Swoon Reads
Pub Date: March 14, 2017
Format: paperback | Source: library
Genres: young adult, contemporary, LGBTQ+
When BFFs Charlie, Taylor and Jamie go to SupaCon, they know it’s going to be a blast. What they don’t expect is for it to change their lives forever.
Charlie likes to stand out. SupaCon is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star, Reese Ryan. When Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.
While Charlie dodges questions about her personal life, Taylor starts asking questions about her own.
Taylor likes to blend in. Her brain is wired differently, making her fear change. And there’s one thing in her life she knows will never change: her friendship with Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about the Queen Firestone SupaFan Contest, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.
This is the fourth fandom convention book I’ve read in the past year and it might be my favorite one! It hit all the right notes and was such a delight to read. Honestly: THIS BOOK WAS ADORABLE AND MADE ME SMILE A LOT. The friendships, the relationships, the nerdiness, the casual but obvious diversity by an ownvoices author. It was all so good!!! Plus it’s always fun when a fictional fandom feels real, like you can see your passion in the character’s passion.
I really enjoyed the tone- it was swoony and fun and super nerdy, but it also hit on some more serious topics like Taylor’s anxiety and perception of her body. There is also Aspergers Syndrome rep, which I’ve never read in a book before. I think a lot of readers will see themselves in both Taylor and Charlie, a bisexual Chinese-Australian YouTuber finding her way in Hollywood. Her crush on Alyssa, a black fellow YouTube celebrity, was the cutest and I absolutely adored their relationship- their picnic date ahhhh!!
I also really loved Taylor and her best friend Jamie together! They first bonded over their mutual love of the Queen Firestone book series, which is the best way to make friends. Best friend crushes are one of my favorite tropes, especially when you can tell both people secretly like each other. Their friendship reminded me of ones I’ve had in the past; it felt so real. I totally related to the pop culture references they were always dropping too. And I loved how Jamie made the effort to truly understand and support Taylor. Besides the relationships, the friendships also stood out which I love- Charlie is a really good friend to both Taylor and Jamie, and they both support Charlie in turn without jealousy.
Bottom line: if you love contemporary romance, real world diversity reflected in the characters, and esp if you love fandom culture, you have to read Queens of Geek!
Do you like books about fandom? What are some other similar YA contemporary books that you enjoyed?