|Ashley Poston has written a geeky, charming, and relatable Cinderella retelling. Elle’s treated as the maid, has the worst room in the house, and has the evil step-mother and step-sisters but the rest of the elements of the story are unique. Elle’s fairy godmother is a co-worker who comes to her rescue and sews her an awesome cosplay costume. Her Prince Charming, Darien Freeman, is a teen heartthrob actor in the reboot of her favorite fandom, Starfield. Best of all, her pumpkin is a vegan food truck specializing in chimichangas and smoothies. The plot centers around a convention and a cosplay contest for a TV series that Elle is obsessed with. I even found myself starting to care about the Starfield series and characters after Poston’s descriptive storylines and character quotes.
Elle’s character development was absolutely phenomenal. She starts as the typical, beaten down Cinderella who has been stomped on by all the people in her life. But, through her fandom she starts making friends and standing up for herself. I loved that Elle finds her self-worth not through the attentions of a boy (which she has), but through her love of Starfield and it’s connection to her parents. She has a breakthrough moment while in her cosplay contest and recognizes that no one defines her worth but her.
I know I’ll end up reading this book again and again (it even has an adorable dachshund named Frank). Geeky, teen readers will love Elle and Darien’s loyalty to their fandom and their nerdy love story. This book pairs nicely with The Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love, Scarlett Epstein Hates It Here, and Tell Me Three Things.
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