Queens of Geek More Like Queens of My Heart

Author: Jen Wilde
Genre: YA // Contemporary // LGBTQIAP+
Goodreads rating: 4.07
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

 

 

 

 

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 eow 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 (Goodreads).

Favourite book of the year along with The Hate U Give, hands down. I honestly don’t see any other book this year being able to surpass these two. But let’s save The Hate U Give for its separate review, shall we?

The biggest thing I loved about this book (besides everything else), is how relatable it is. Firstly I can of course relate to the fact that they’re at a con and geeking out about pretty much everything. I think pretty much all of us bookworms can relate to the fandom aspect of this book. I didn’t expect to relate this much to Queens of Geek though.

Firstly there’s Taylor and her anxiety. While everyone experiences anxiety differently (and mine has a lot to do with my PTSD too) and there were thus some differences between me and Taylor, I still related to her a lot. I am absolutely in love with the way Jen Wilde wrote Taylor’s anxiety. While sometimes reading about it sometimes made me feel really anxious as well, it mostly felt really nice to read about because I felt so understood. I really wish that I had had this book when I was younger.

I also loved how understanding Charlie and Jamie were of Taylor’s anxiety and how much they helped her. It’s hard to find friends like that, so I’m happy that those with anxiety who sadly don’t have people like that around them, can see that there are definitely people like that out there (and of course this is fiction, but as someone who found a great friend like that I can assure you there really are people like that out there and I hope they’ll come into your life soon <3)

Then there’s Charlie, who I didn’t relate too as much as Taylor, but there was one line that really, really got to me:

The moment I first realized I’m into more than one gender was a quiet one. It was sudden and almost anticlimatic, so it’s not a particularly exciting story. I was fourteen, and by that time I’d had more than one crush on a girl, mostly movie stars. But I never interpreted my feelings as a crush; I just thought I admired them a whole lot. It didn’t occur to me that those feelings were similar to the way I felt about guys I liked.

So I guess this is were I come out on my blog? I didn’t want to do a whole post dedicated to it, since I didn’t want to make a big deal out of it and new followers would most likely not come across that post anyway, but if you’ve been following my blog for a while and didn’t know, I guess this may come out of nowhere so I didn’t want to not address it.

Anyway, I had never thought about it that way, but when I read that sentence, I realised that I had thought the same thing. The way bisexuality is written is so positive and while there’s some biphobia, it’s addressed and it’s coming from an antagonist.

There are two romances in this book, an f/f and a m/f one, and both were so adorable and healthy. I think I died from cuteness overload multiple times. And while I absolutely love Alyssa, I want to give a special shout out to Jamie. For a long time abusive male love interests were a trend in YA, and I’m glad to see that’s dying out. Jamie is an absolute sweetheart, who’s soft and nice and caring and nothing like the male love interests that were so popular not that long ago.

I also loved that Charlie’s ex was clearly abusive towards her and that it was addressed. It’s made clear that the way he treated her was not okay. As someone who’s very passionate about portraying abusive right and not romanticising it in fiction I absolutely loved that this was added. There are so many positive messages in this book. There’s also a part about bodyshaming and the way that was handled was so beautiful it almost made me cry.

Another thing I loved was how supportive Charlie’s manager was. When she was first introduced I feared that she wouldn’t sympathise with Charlie and be mean towards her, but I was pleasantly surprised. She was like a friend/big sister/aunt/manager in one and I loved her relationship with Charlie.

There’s so much more that I loved about this book, but these really are the main things (at least the ones I remember) besides the fact that it’s simply fun. And just a positive read. Sure, it touches some heavy topics, but it doesn’t feel heavy. To summarise: a light, fun but important read, with lots of positive rep and messages.

Have you read Queens of Geek yet? What did you think? What’s your favourite book of the year so far? Let me know in the comments!

Goldie Vance // Black Queer Female Teenage Detective

You may know that I’ve been reading quite a lot of comics lately, and today I wanted to talk to you guys about another favourite that deserves more love (obviously all my favourites deserve more love but ssh), namely: Goldie Vance

Goldie Vance is about a teenage detective solving, well, mysteries obviously. It takes place during the sixties and is just a lot of fun. So why should you read it?

💛 First of all, because it’s about a black queer female teenage detective!!

💛 Goldie is such a fun character

💛 All characters are so colourful and unique

💛 Goldie has a cute girlfriend!!!

💛 It’s a fun read

💛 It takes place during the 60’s yet has a diverse cast

💛 Girls who race!!!

💛 Girls who work on cars!!!

💛 Girls who love cars!!!

💛 Lot’s of girl power and girls supporting girls

💛 There’s more to the mean girl than meets the eye (which honestly is one of my favourite tropes I can’t help it I’m such a sucker for it – maybe because ‘the mean girl’ is a far more used trope??)

💛 It’s funny and just delightful???

💛 THE ART. LOOK AT IT. IT’S SO CUTE AND COLOURFUL

💛 And the clothes omg I love the clothes

💛 Positive parental figures and positive relationships with their children

💛 Good mysteries!

💛 Basically: read it??

I hope my fangirling was useful to you and convinced you to read it haha. Do you know any similar comics or books (besides Nancy Drew) that you’d recommend? Have you read Goldie Vance? Let me know in the comments!

Rock and Riot – It’s Like Grease but Queer

I’m back to talk about more comics! Before I talked about Shoot Around and Lumberjanes, today it’s Rock and Riot’s turn (and believe me there are a lot more coming).

So what is Rock and Riot about? Taken from the comic’s tumblr:

Rock and Riot follows the tales of opposing teenage gangs in the 1950s with an LGBTQ theme! Will the teams set aside their differences to fight for what they have in common?

Doesn’t that sound great?! If that hasn’t convinced you yet, here are some reasons to read it:

‘LGBTQ THEME’ IS NOT AN EXAGGERATION

No one’s straight?? There are so many different gender identities and sexual orientations in this comic it’s amazing! There are lesbians, bisexuals, panromantics, pansexuals, demisexuals, asexuals, trans characters, an agender character, aromantics, a genderfluid character, a demiboy, a bigender… And I think I haven’t even mentioned all of them at this point. IT’S GREAT.

NOT JUST LGBTQ+ DIVERSITY 

Not everyone is white yay! And so many different body types!! That no one gets shamed for!!

CHARACTERS ARE UNIQUE AND RELATABLE AND JUST GREAT

Sometimes I hate myself for adding titles because honestly what can I add to that. THEY’RE JUST GREAT OKAY. They’re all so cute and funny and relatable sfnsghd I love them. Also they’re so much more than their gender identity and/or sexual orientation, though they are topics that are dealt with

THEY ARE IN GANGS

Which is so much fun! Like not the killing kind of gangs but the ‘I am cooler than thou’ kind of gang with amazing friendships. There’s a girl gang (with a trans girl in it!), a boy gang and an entire gang of teens who don’t stick to the gender binary and they’re definitely the coolest gang.

SUPER CUTE RELATIONSHIPS THAT WILL BE THE DEATH OF YOU

I’m not joking you will die

BEST COMING OUTS EVER

I don’t want to spoil anything, but… IT WAS GREAT. I need to see more of these

CUTE ART STYLE

Just look at it! It’s so cute and colourful

IT TAKES PLACE IN THE FIFTIES

Honestly I love the fifties but… Not good times. So it’s great to see a story take place in the fifties and be so diverse and positive (though there are obstacles as well of course, especially a big one going on right now but it looks like the characters will fight it yay!)

It’s just super fun and cute and relatable and so diverse!!! It’s great trust me. I already linked to the tumblr where you can read it, but I’ll do it again. So if you want to read this amazing comic (YAY) click here.

Are you reading Rock and Riot? What do you think? Are you reading any similar comics that you’d recommend to me? Let me know in the comments (fun fact I wrote comics instead of comments at first woops)!

Mini Reviews Because I Forgot All About These Books

A lot of the times I end up not reviewing books at all, because I don’t have time to review them and by the time I do, I’ve forgotten all about them. I’ve written mini reviews before since I didn’t remember enough to write full reviews, but… sometimes it’s just too late and I barely remember it and if I were to review it – mini or not – I’d be like ‘it was fun read it’ or ‘it wasn’t fun don’t read it.’ Not very helpful, am I right? So let’s review these books shortly before I forget all about them (I know the title of this post says I already forgot them, but I meant I forgot I read them and need to review them woops)

Some of these I might review in more detail later on, but I’ll include them just in case I don’t have the time to do that. That way I’ll still have shared some of my thoughts

Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo 

A.k.a. I still don’t understand why everyone loves The Darkling??

But what I definitely don’t understand is why people ship him and Alina. That would be an incredibly abusive ship?? Not that Mal is any better yikes. Definitely understand all the love for Nikolai though

Genre: YA // Fantasy
Series: The Grisha #2
Goodreads rating: 4.09
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐

Beautiful Broken Things by Sara Barnard

A.k.a. I meant to review this in December but?? I don’t know what happened. I really loved this one. Not to call myself beautiful but after reading it I was the title guys. Suzanne was an amazing character and in some ways I related a bit too much to her (which was a bit triggering). She’s written so well. There’s also lots of friendship scenes that I love and it felt so realistic.

Genre: YA // Contemporary
Goodreads rating: 3.38
My rating:  ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Summary: Best friends Caddy and Rosie are inseparable. Their differences have brought them closer, but as she turns sixteen Caddy begins to wish she could be a bit more like Rosie – confident, funny and interesting. Then Suzanne comes into their lives: beautiful, damaged, exciting and mysterious, and things get a whole lot more complicated. As Suzanne’s past is revealed and her present begins to unravel, Caddy begins to see how much fun a little trouble can be. But the course of both friendship and recovery is rougher than either girl realises, and Caddy is about to learn that downward spirals have a momentum of their own (Goodreads).

Magnus Chase and the Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan

A.k.a. I meant to review this as well but in January instead and school happened. I loved this one so much though. It had everything I loved about the first one, and fixed the problems (like the pace and how Magnus and Sam felt too much like Percy and Annabeth to me) I had with it. I fell in love with all the characters, new (ALEX!!!!) and old, great storyline, fun side quests…

Genre: YA // Fantasy // LGBTQIAP+
Series: Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #2
Goodreads rating: 4.37
My rating:  ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit by Jaye Robin Brown

Another one I meant to review (I should just stop saying this shouldn’t I? Because so far I meant to review all of these except Siege and Storm – honestly writing a mini review for this was the best idea I had in a while lol consindering even after finishing it I barely had anything to say about it. I don’t know if you guys remember my attempt to review Shadow and Bone but… I didn’t want to repeat that haha)

ANYWAY. This was a cute, fun, light read with a little too much drama for my taste. Remember how I ranted about ‘underrated’ book tropes that I hate? How I ranted about miscommunciation because for the love of God please please just talk?? Yes this book is… well maybe not full with it, but a lot of times the problems could’ve been easily solved if Jo had just talked. Not just ‘a lot of problems’, the biggest conflict in the entire book could’ve been prevented that way.

I just find this trope too annoying to love a book, but it was definitely fun! The romance was adorable and I really liked some of Jo’s new friends (with the exception of one, you’ll know which one if you’ve read it). It’s also great to see religion and sexuality handled in such a positive light.

Genre: YA // Contemporary // LGBTQIAP+
Goodreads rating: 3.89
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐

Summary: It’s going to take a miracle for Joanna Gordon to get through senior year.

Despite being the daughter of a well-known radio evangelist, Jo has never hidden the fact that she’s gay, and her dad has always supported her. But that was back in Atlanta. Now her dad the reverend has married wife number three, and they’ve all moved to small-town Rome, Georgia. When Jo’s dad asks her to lie low for the rest of the year in the hopes that it will help him and his new wife settle in, Jo reluctantly agrees.

Although when God closes a closet door, he opens a window. Everything becomes so easy for Jo once she rebrands herself as a straight girl. No one gives her odd looks. Her new stepfamily likes her. She even gets in with the popular crowd.

And that’s how she meets Mary Carlson, the ultimate temptation. Even though Jo knows this girl is completely off-limits, she just can’t get her out of her mind. But Jo couldn’t possibly think of breaking her promise to her dad. Even if Jo’s starting to fall for Mary Carlson. Even if there’s a chance Mary Carlson might be interested in her, too. Right?

Lord, have mercy. Jo’s in for one hell of a year.

Princess Princess Ever After by Katie O’Neill

This one really deserves a post on its own, but like I said, I’ll include those here as well because I might never get to them. It’s a super cute comic book in which princesses save other princesses (and themselves!) and  fall in love and it’s just super cute.

Genre: Comic // Children’s (though seriously enjoyable for all ages) // Fantasy // LGBTQIAP+
Goodreads rating: 4.18
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

Definitely hope to write a full review for this one, but if not: one heck of a ride. It’s very emotional, might be triggering to some, addresses serious issues and complex characters. I’m still not sure if I even ship the romance? It’s definitely a book that stays with you.

Genre: YA // Historical // LGBTQIAP+
Goodreads rating: 4.09
My rating:  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Summary: It’s 1959. The battle for civil rights is raging. And it’s Sarah Dunbar’s first day of school, as one of the first black students at the previously all-white Jefferson High. No one wants Sarah there. Not the Governor. Not the teachers. And certainly not the students – especially Linda Hairston, daughter of the town’s most ardent segregationist. Sarah and Linda have every reason to despise each other. But as a school project forces them to spend time together, the less their differences seem to matter. And Sarah and Linda start to feel something they’ve never felt before. Something they’re both determined ignore. Because it’s one thing to be frightened by the world around you – and another thing altogether when you’re terrified of what you feel inside

The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie

I’ve wanted to read something my Agatha Christie for a long time now and… I’m not sure if I’m disappointed or not? I guess it was a fun who-dunnit, but it was also a bit boring? Also use of the n-word and anti-semitism which really put me off and makes me question my rating.

Genre: Detective
Series: Hercule Poirot #1
Goodreads rating: 3.98
My rating: ⭐⭐⭐

I suddenly feel so productive now that I’ve reviewed these! Have you read any of these? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

We Awaken: Cute, Dreams, Ballet and Asexual Rep

Genre: YA // Fantasy // LGBTQIAP+
Goodreads rating: 3.36
My rating:  ⭐⭐⭐.5

 

 

 

 

 

 

Victoria Dinham doesn’t have much left to look forward to. Since her father died in a car accident, she lives only to fulfill her dream of being accepted into the Manhattan Dance Conservatory. But soon she finds another reason to look forward to dreams when she encounters an otherworldly girl named Ashlinn, who bears a message from Victoria’s comatose brother. Ashlinn is tasked with conjuring pleasant dreams for humans, and through the course of their nightly meetings in Victoria’s mind, the two become close. Ashlinn also helps Victoria understand asexuality and realize that she, too, is asexual.

But then Victoria needs Ashlinn’s aid outside the realm of dreams, and Ashlinn assumes human form to help Victoria make it to her dance audition. They take the opportunity to explore New York City, their feelings for each other, and the nature of their shared asexuality. But like any dream, it’s too good to last. Ashlinn must shrug off her human guise and resume her duties creating pleasant nighttime visions—or all of humanity will pay the price.

DISCLAIMER: I was given a copy of the book by the author. This doesn’t affect my review

One word to describe We Awaken is: cute. When I finished it I was filled with warm, fuzzy feelings. I loved the relationship between Victoria and Ashlinn. They had their problems, misunderstandings and fights, but they talked it out and it was a healthy relationship. They made sure that the other was comfortable and happy. They loved each other so much. It was so frickin pure and made me so happy. And the fact that they were both asexual and that the book explored this? Yes please? I’m not an expert on asexuality, but  from what I’ve read about asexuality it felt like good representation. It also fought stereotypes head one (like the plant one)

The beginning was a bit slow, but once the pace picked up I couldn’t stop reading. I felt like the writing became better throughout the book as well (not that it was bad in the beginning or anything). I wasn’t sure where the plot was going, thus why I gave it 3.5 stars and not higher. I definitely love the book though, and I think everyone should read it.

The way Victoria dealt with her grief was also very relatable and it was definitely an emotional book at times, even though a lot of it was very fluffy and cute too.

Oh and the fact that Ashlinn was basically the sandman was really cool too, though I wish that had been explored a bit more.

Moral of this review: READ IT.

Have you read We Awaken yet? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments!

Review Timekeeper: Just Go Read It Trust Me

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Genre: YA | Fantasy | Steampunk
Series: Timekeeper #1
Goodreads rating: 4.21
My rating:  ★★★★summary

Two o’clock was missing. 

In an alternate Victorian world controlled by clock towers, a damaged clock can fracture time—and a destroyed one can stop it completely.

It’s a truth that seventeen-year-old clock mechanic Danny Hart knows all too well; his father has been trapped in a Stopped town east of London for three years. Though Danny is a prodigy who can repair not only clockwork, but the very fabric of time, his fixation with staging a rescue is quickly becoming a concern to his superiors.

And so they assign him to Enfield, a town where the tower seems to be forever plagued with problems. Danny’s new apprentice both annoys and intrigues him, and though the boy is eager to work, he maintains a secretive distance. Danny soon discovers why: he is the tower’s clock spirit, a mythical being that oversees Enfield’s time. Though the boys are drawn together by their loneliness, Danny knows falling in love with a clock spirit is forbidden, and means risking everything he’s fought to achieve.

But when a series of bombings at nearby towers threaten to stop more cities, Danny must race to prevent Enfield from becoming the next target or he’ll not only lose his father, but the boy he loves, forever.

review

Omg guys where to begin? I loved this book so much – definitely one of my favourites this year. The only reason that I gave it four stars is because it felt a little bit predictable at times, but that didn’t stop me from loving it AT ALL.

First of all the worldbuilding is so cool. Victorian London steampunk-style has been done before, but the world is ‘controlled’ by clock towers. That sounds kind of creepy, but they just keep time from running normally. It is a bit confusing at first, but throughout the book it’s explained more and more and I loved the background story of how this society came to be with the Greek Titans. Not just that, these ‘myths’ were seperately told in the story and while at first I thought that would ruin the pace, it didn’t. At least not for me. It was just so unique and I loved it.

Then there’s our protagonist Danny. Not only is his father trapped in a town which means he might never see him again, he’s also been in a horrible accident himself that could have killed him, giving him PTSD. I could relate so much to Danny that I cried. It was so accurately written and I just want to give Tara Sim a hug as a thank you.

Speaking of which, in this Victorian London homosexuality isn’t a crime (though it is frowned upon by a lot of people) and women are fighting gender roles. Bless. Danny’s best friend Cassie is a mechanic (a regular one like in our world who works on cars) and his colleague (and maybe friend in the sequel? I’m digging their possible friendship) Daphne is a clock mechanic which is unheard of especially since she’s also half-Indian.

And of course the romance. Guys the romance is so beautiful. It’s so pure and emotional and cute and did I mention beautiful and healthy and oh my God I love it so much. It’s just?? I have no words?? For the book tour I’ve created a playlist so listen to that below and the cute songs on there will give you a taste of what it’s like. But seriously favourite romance of 2016.

While it took me a while to finish this, it was in no way because of the book it self. I had a concussion for two to three weeks so I couldn’t read and then I got super busy with school, but when I finally got around to reading it I couldn’t put it away. Though at times it felt a bit predictable, there were still twists and turns, lots of action, lovable characters and scenes… Gosh just read it you won’t regret it (I hope). This book deserves all the attention and love. I don’t even know how to put it into words. Just know that I need to get my hands on a physical copy.

PLAYLIST 

Listen on Spotify

“You’re everything. You’re… You’re chaos and order and everything between. Like sunshine kept back by clouds. Like the entire world’s imploded inside you, but all I see are the stars are sewn into your skin. You’re filled with soft, dark music. I hear it all the time. Your music.”

Flaws – Bastille
Fire N Gold – Bea Miller
Fix You – Coldplay
The Scientist – Coldplay
Find My Way Back – Eric Arjes
Bring Me Back To Life – Extreme Music
My Fault – Imagine Dragons
Once In A Lifetime – Landon Austin
Suspension (Acoustic) – Lights
Ordinary Human – OneRepublic
Always – Panic! At The Disco
I Get To Love You – Ruelle
War of Hearts – Ruelle
Wake Me Up – Sam Tsui
I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) – Sleeping At Last
For Him – Troye Sivan
Youth – Troye Sivan
Shiver Shiver – Walk The Moon

And if I got you excited, enter the giveaway to win a finished copy! (U.S. and Canada only) Click here to enter

Have you read this yet? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments!

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Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Genre: Ya | contemporary
Goodreads rating: 4.08
My rating: ★★★★

summary

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met (Goodreads).

review

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is in one word ‘adorable’. It’s a fun, light read with some heartwarming and laugh out loud moments. It’s fun trying to figure out who Blue is (though I totally called it pretty much from the beginning) and his interactions with Blue are fun to read (especially since I’m a sucker for different formats in books like emails).

Simon’s family was very present, though I feel like they could’ve been worked out a bit more. While I loved them and thought they had a cute relationship (my favourite moment of them has to be when they skype with Simon’s older sister to discuss The Bachelor and their father actually has a rose), they still felt kind of flat to me.

I also loved the focus on friendship in this book. Simon’s friends were very present throughout the book and their relationships and conversations about everything and nothing seemed very realistic to me.

Simon himself is a great protagonist, but maybe I’m biased because he’s a huge Potterhead. Why had nobody mentioned that to me yet? All I knew was that this book is full with oreos, if someone had just mentioned all the Harry Potter references I would’ve picked this up so much sooner.

“What’s a dementor?”
I mean, I can’t even. “Nora, you are no longer my sister.”
“So it’s some Harry Potter thing,” she says.”

Simon’s reaction is me

So why did I give this book four stars, and not five? While I’d definitely recommend it, it just didn’t blow me away, which is a shame, because everything about this screams ‘MICHELLE WOULD LOVE THIS’. I can’t exactly put my finger on why it didn’t blow me away, but it just didn’t. Still, a four-star read is really good too of course!

Have you read Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda yet? I feel like everyone in the book blogging community has haha, but I’m sure that’s not true! How do you feel about this book? Let me know in the comments!

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