5 STAR READ: The Dead Romantics Review

Summary (from the publisher):

image001Florence Day is the ghostwriter for one of the most prolific romance authors in the industry, and she has a problem—after a terrible breakup, she no longer believes in love. It’s as good as dead.

When her new editor, a too-handsome mountain of a man, won’t give her an extension on her book deadline, Florence prepares to kiss her career goodbye. But then she gets a phone call she never wanted to receive, and she must return home for the first time in a decade to help her family bury her beloved father.

For ten years, she’s run from the town that never understood her, and even though she misses the sound of a warm Southern night and her eccentric, loving family and their funeral parlor, she can’t bring herself to stay. Even with her father gone, it feels like nothing in this town has changed. And she hates it.

Until she finds a ghost standing at the funeral parlor’s front door, just as broad and infuriatingly handsome as ever, and he’s just as confused about why he’s there as she is.

Romance is most certainly dead . . . but so is her new editor, and his unfinished business will have her second-guessing everything she’s ever known about love stories.

My Rating: 5/5 Stars 

My Thoughts:

I am typically not a paranormal romance or ghost book person. Frankly, even with its ghostly inspiration and synopsis, I wouldn’t even necessarily call The Dead Romantics a paranormal romance. Although it definitely borrows from contemporary romance themes (and yes, at the end of the day, could be called a contemporary romance), The Dead Romantics was a perfect contemporary novel. And yes, there is some romance, but it was so cleverly done & I LOVED how it connected back to the title. I’ve read Ashley Poston’s YA series, Once Upon a Con, (sidenote that there is a nod to The Princess & the Fangirl in The Dead Romantics), and I want so much more from her in the contemporary/contemporary romance space. I’m so happy that this book is getting even more deserved attention as Good Morning America’s Book Club pick for July! 

Honestly, I did not know much going into this one other than knowing it had a ghostwriter as a protagonist and I recommend going into this one knowing as little as possible. It made it even so much more interesting not knowing what to expect from the plot — I found myself guessing & anticipating if there would really be a real romance arc to the story. If you’re unlike me and need to know the basic premise of a book before jumping in, The Dead Romantics follows the ghostwriter of acclaimed romance writer Ann Nichols, Florence, who is struggling to write the romantic ending of Ann’s upcoming book after experiencing her own devastating heartbreak. Her new (immensely attractive) editor refuses to give her an extended deadline and Florence’s writing block continues when she experiences a devastating personal loss and must return home to her small South Carolina town, where her family runs a funeral home. This same town sent Florence running to NYC after graduation, after being bullied as a teen for being able to see ghosts… 

Read More »

CALLING ALL CONVENTION LOVERS: The Princess and the Fangirl Review


Summary (from the publisher):
Imogen Lovelace is an ordinary fangirl on an impossible mission: save her favorite character, Princess Amara, from being killed off from her favorite franchise, 42974554Starfield. The problem is, Jessica Stone—the actress who plays Princess Amara—wants nothing more than to leave the intense scrutiny of the fandom behind. If this year’s ExcelsiCon isn’t her last, she’ll consider her career derailed.
When a case of mistaken identity throws look-a-likes Imogen and Jess together, they quickly become enemies. But when the script for the Starfield sequel leaks, and all signs point to Jess, she and Imogen must trade places to find the person responsible. That’s easier said than done when the girls step into each other’s shoes and discover new romantic possibilities, as well as the other side of intense fandom. As these “princesses” race to find the script-leaker, they must rescue themselves from their own expectations, and redefine what it means to live happily ever after.

My Rating: 4.25/5 Stars

My Thoughts:

I’ve been devouring books over a day or so this month, including Ashley Poston’s The Princess and the Fangirl. I have a sweet tooth for fandom-focused stories, much like the first book in the Once Upon a Con series, Geekerella. Although I haven’t read too many, Geekerella is my favorite Cinderella retelling. Like the other books in the series, Ashley Poston puts a fandom spin on fairytales, with the fandom in focus being the fictional sci-fi TV and film series, Starfield. The latest book in the series, The Princess and the Fangirl, is a Princess and The Pauper retelling. Starfield movie star Jess and fangirl Imogen switch places during Excelsicon, the Stafield convention.

The main plot of the book revolves around Jess, who has been criticized for her performance and lack of passion in playing the Starfield female lead, figuring out who is leaking her stolen script of the film’s sequel. While Jess debates if she even wants to be part of the sequel, Imogen is determined to save Jess’ character, Princess Amara, from being just another female character who there to evolve the male protagonist’s journey. I admit that I didn’t care so much for this particular aspect of the plot, aka finding the person behind the leaked script. I was more interested in Jess and Imogen’s character development and relationships.

Jess definitely experiences the most character development throughout the book, as she deals with the pressure of playing Princess Amara and figuring out the future of her acting career. Readers may have an easier experience relating to Imogen’s POV because of her passion for all-things fandom. It was interesting to see Jess and Imogen uncover things, both good and bad, about the Starfield fandom from their reversed roles. While Imogen gets to embrace her love for Starfield, I also liked seeing Jess try to figure out her own relationship with the fandom.

Read More »

What I Read in May

May was an absolutely fantastic reading month for me! Since I read 10 books this month, I kept my thoughts short and sweet, going from my least favorite read to my favorite read of the month.

Nemesis by Brendan Reichs // 2/5 Stars

Even though this is a YA novel and the main characters are teenagers, Nemesis felt more like a middle grade to me. While the premise was exciting and had some Lord of the Flies vibes, the plot and characters just didn’t deliver for me.

The Cabin by Natasha Preston // 2/5 Stars

My sister loves Natasha Preston’s books, so I typically read them alongside her. I was unfortunately very disappointed, as The Cabin’s premise was exciting, but the story itself didn’t have any sort of spark and was WAY too long– it took us forever to get to some sort of “solution”

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab // 3.75/5 Stars

Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy ADSOM as much as I thought I would, being head-over-heels for Schwab’s This Savage Song and Vicious. I thought that the plot was a bit predictable and unexciting at times, however, I plan on picking up the next book soon!

Windfall by Jennifer E. Smith // 4/5 Stars

While Windfall was over 400 pages long, it was a pretty quick read for me. I found it to be a little tropey and I didn’t completely enjoy the romance. I loved Leo and seeing Alice’s journey outside her relationship with Teddy. I teared up when she reflects on her parents’ lives with her uncle.

Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli // 4/5 Stars

I finally read Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda and really enjoyed it! There’s a dog and Oreos!! I have a full review here.

Geekerella by Ashley Poston // 4.5 Stars

Geekerella was the fandom+fairytale novel that I didn’t know I needed until I started reading. My full review can be found on Fangirl Fury here.

The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr // 4.75/5 Stars

The One Memory of Flora Banks took me by surprise, as it was one of my favorite reads of May. My review can be found here.

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas // 4.5/5 Stars

One of my most anticipated reads of 2017 finally delivered this month. I have a full review of ACOWAR here, including a mini conflicted rant about there being more books in the ACOTAR world.

Radio Silence by Alice Oseman // 5/5 Stars

My only 5/5 Star read of the month, Radio Silence was the type of book that I just fell into. There’s Tumblr and Youtube and fanart and friendship and family and school all rolled into one perfect contemporary read.

The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord // 5/5 Stars

From the moment I started The Names They Gave Us, I was hooked. Emery Lord’s latest release about family, friendship, religion, and grief was an emotion-filled story rolled into a summer contemporary. I have a full review here.

What did you read in May? Share in the comments below!

Review: Geekerella by Ashley Poston


Elle is the biggest Starfield fangirl you’ll ever meet. She is super-excited about the space/sci-fi TV series’ movie reboot, until it’s announced that Darien Freeman is slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor. Yes, Darien Freeman, the teenage heartthrob from that soap opera, is slated to play one of Elle’s all-time favorite characters. While Elle is not happy about this news, there’s one thing she is more than excited for: the Starfield cosplay contest at Excelsicon. The winner gets tickets to the LA premiere of the movie, where Elle can finally put her evil stepmother and stepsisters behind.

Darien Freeman has a love for Starfield that rivals his love for orange Crush. Playing Carmindor isn’t just job for him: it’s his fanboy dream come true. But playing the Federation Prince isn’t a total happily ever. Instead of walking the floor of Excelsicon just like any other ordinary fan, Darien has to do meet-and-greats, signings, and judge the Starfield cosplay contest. And when Starfield fans start doubting Darien’s ability to play the Federation Prince, Darien questions how he’ll do the fandom and himself justice.

Star Rating: 4.5/5 stars 

Cover Lust?: Yes! There’s the Magic Pumpkin and Franco, what else could you need?

My Thoughts:

Geekerella is my new favorite Cinderella retelling because of how relatable this book was to me as a fangirl. Elle and Darien are such huge fans of Starfield, and they each have a special connection to the series. Elle’s parents met at a Starfield convention and shared their love for the series with their daughter, supplemented by the fact that Elle’s dad founded Excelsicon. Darien grew up watching the series with his dad, and this totally reminded of how I read and watched Harry Potter with my mom.

I really enjoyed how Ashley Preston mixed Cinderella elements with modern elements. My favorite combined element was the Magic Pumpkin food truck! I thought it was such a clever idea for Elle’s mode of transportation, along with the fact that it came along with Sage as her fairy godmother. Sage was my favorite side character in the book because she was always there for Elle. She let Elle bring her into the Starfield fandom, which reminded me of how I share my love for fandoms with my own friends. Most of my friends can’t hang out with me without me mentioning Hamilton or Harry Potter or books at least three times.

One of my favorite parts in the novel is when Elle and Darien are at Excelsicon. My only complaint is that I wish Elle went around the show floor more. When she was describing all the cosplayers and the atmosphere, it reminded me of my own experiences at conventions, and I wished I was on the show floor with her. Overall, the fandom elements were so amazing in this book. If a crush tells me, “I hear the observation deck is nice this time of year”, I just might swoon over.

While the ending was a bit predictable, I absolutely loved it and gave me all the fangirl feels. Sometimes you just need a good happily ever after. My favorite part of Geekerella wasn’t even in the actual story– Ashley Preston’s acknowledgements made me cry! In her acknowledgements, Ashley Preston thanks the fandom community and the reader. I squealed when she writes, “So I want to thank you . You, the reader. You, who cosplays and writes fanfiction and draws fan art and runs a forum and collects Funko-Pops and must have hardcovers for all of your favorite book series and frames for your autographed posters”. If that’s not me, I don’t know who I am! Her acknowledgements were just so heartfelt, and I look forward to reading her other books!

What’s your favorite fandom(s)? Share in the comments below!