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.
Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde, chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads, is an empowering novel for anyone who has ever felt that fandom is family.
I thought I had grown out of fandom books, but Queens of Geek proved me wrong, and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. It was cute, light, and fluffy–basically, everything I needed after reading high-stakes fantasy for the past three months. It tackled a lot of serious issues really well without making the book heavy, which is pretty difficult to do, and I really appreciate all the #ownvoices rep in Queens of Geek.
As expected, most of the book is pretty light with a ton of pop culture references. I’m not a comics person and frankly I have been reading far too many terrible comics lately thanks to a class I’m taking so a lot of references flew completely over my head, but I love the idea that fandom and online communities can be super supportive and connect people across the world. Charlie and Alyssa’s romance made me really happy, just because it was so dang cute. There was a bit of conflict in the relationships, but it was all really easily solved, and you know, it’s a romance book, so I was expecting a Happily Ever After ending.
Of the two main characters, my favourite was definitely Taylor because I related to her so much. I’m also autistic and have anxiety, especially social anxiety, so seeing Taylor thrive in her own little geeky world was great. And this is #ownvoices rep, so the author is coming from personal experience too. I never knew how much I needed to see books about autistic girls until I read this; one conversation in particular between Taylor and another autistic girl, Josie, made me literally cry because it hit the nail right on the head about what I feel every single day of my life. You would think that I would get over how important representation feels because I’ve seen such an explosion in the past few years, but here we are. I’ve spent so long trying to ignore my autism diagnosis because I was ashamed, and I know books like these are going to help confront that stigma and give other autistic girls a voice.
If you want a really good, well-written romance read, Queens of Geek is absolutely perfect. It’s light and fun and quick and really freaking adorable.
“That’s what we do. We walk a tightrope every day. Getting out the door is a tightrope. Going grocery shopping is a tightrope. Socializing is a tightrope. Things that most people consider to be normal, daily parts of life are the very things we fear and struggle with the most, and yet here we are, moving forward anyway. That’s not weak. We are the brave ones.”