Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde
Published April 26, 2017 by Swoon Reads
Young Adult Contemporary
Charlie likes to stand out. She’s a vlogger and actress promoting her first movie at SupaCon, and this is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star Reese Ryan. When internet-famous cool-girl actress Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.
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 her best guy friend Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about a fan contest for her favorite fandom, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.
Do you ever read a book and find yourself relating to a character so much that all you can do is sit back and think to yourself, “damn son, it me.”? It’s actually not a common occurrence for me. Seriously, the last book I read where I felt that sort of connection was Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, and it’s been about two years since I read that one. But now, Queens of Geek has stormed in and taken over the roll as the story of my life.
Set over the course of three days, Queens of Geek is a story told in the alternating perspectives of vlogger and actress Charlie, and reserved, socially anxious Taylor. I’m sure I say this all the time, but I generally try to avoid books with multiple POV because I often find that my enjoyment becomes hindered by the back-and-forth changes of perspective. Honestly, I usually just get bored. However this time round, that wasn’t so.
It’s mentioned in the book that the differences in both Charlie’s and Taylor’s personalities balance each other out, and I found that those differences were represented really well when it came to the POV change which actually helped in making this a really enjoyable read for me.
Personally, I enjoyed Taylor’s story more than Charlie’s, and I think that’s simply because I relate to her the most. Seriously, our similarities are uncanny. Unlike Taylor, I don’t have autism, and do have to say that I personally don’t think I would have ever picked up on the fact that she does if it weren’t for the fact that it was mentioned in the book. I think it was because she is just so me that I didn’t really think much about it. From her love of fandom life, to her social anxiety, I felt as though I was looking back at myself. She talks a lot about her what her anxiety is like, and it’s all things that I myself have struggled with, and it was honestly so reassuring that I’m not the only person who stresses out about simple things like standing in line at the grocery store.
” [anxiety is] a constant companion. Like a blowfly that gets into the house in the middle of summer, flying around and around. You can hear it buzzing, but you can’t see it, can’t capture it, can’t let it out.” p.51
Charlie on the other hand was just somebody I didn’t quite relate to in any way other than her total geekiness. But just because I didn’t relate to her, doesn’t make me love her any less. She’s such a strong and admirable character. Charlie is a Chinese-Australian vlogger, and very open about her bisexuality, and she don’t care what anyone thinks. *z-formation finger-snap* She believes that everyone is important, and she’s the type of person that everyone needs in their lives.
“Besides, there’s no one way to be a girl, Tay. You don’t need to fit yourself into what society tells us a girl should be. Girls can be whoever they want. Whether that’s an ass-kicking, sarcastic, crime-solving FBI agent or a funny, gorgeous, witty beauty queen – or both at the same time.” p.183
I’ll be honest with you that not a whole lot happens over the course of the whole book. Outside of Charlie’s and Taylor’s budding relationships with their respective love interests, most of the books consists of the characters bouncing between diners and panels and whatnot. But after having read a number of plot-heavy books of late, I honestly wouldn’t have this book any other way. Sometimes you just need something light and fluffy to escape into, u feel?
Throughout my entire read, I had so many flashbacks to some really great memories (seriously, I could sit here for hours just talking about them), and reminded of so many different aspects about myself, and just how much fun life and cons can be. The most constant feelings I had whilst reading? Happiness. Contentedness. Love.
This is probably the most adorkable book that I’ve ever read, and is so empowering for both girls and geek-kind alike. It’s been a few weeks since I read Queens of Geek, and I still have so many warm-and-fuzzy feelings about it. I’ve never really been one for having a comfort read, but if I had to make a short list, then this would definitely make the cut.
Overall, this book was exactly what I needed in my life, and has reminded me just how much fun it is to embrace your inner geek.
Rating: 5 out of 5 [ ★★★★★ ]
Thank you Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me a copy for review!
Have you guys read Queens of Geek yet? Do you have any plans to? I’d love to hear your favourite memories from any cons you’ve attended. And if you’ve never been, which ones would you love to attend?