Trend I Hate the Famous Youtuber: Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

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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 show 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.

Source: GoodReads

A YA recent trend that I cannot stand: the famous vlogger/Youtuber.

Because Youtubers are annoying (for the most part).

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Okay, that was a huge generalization and I feel bad about saying it for those of you who are not annoying Youtubers but I do get annoyed with a lot of Vine/Youtube  celebrities.  And I know the main reason we’re seeing them is the same reason we had a lot of characters be bloggers a few years back, it’s supposed to appeal to the reading (reviewing) audience and honestly it reeks of pandering.  And unless you’re part of the Youtube elite you’re not going to get that famous (just saying) though you’d never realize it by books like this one.

Seriously, it seems like every Youtube star gets a movie contract in this book.

No lie.

Plus, the whole book tube thing really annoys me.  Especially since a few known ones are sponsored and I just…if you’re going to review a product you shouldn’t be paid for it.

There I’m saying it (and if I go on even more about it, it’s going to get ugly fast).

So reading about all these pretty much talentless wannabe celebrities becoming famous overnight because they know how to apply eyeliner-um, I don’t think so.

Then why did you read the book, you might be asking?

Um, because it involved cons and even the summary showed that this book was going to have lots of diversity on several different levels.  And I have to get the book credit for that.  This book is very inclusive-people of all different races, nationalities, sexual orientations, and it even features characters with disabilities  and it’s refreshing since the book depicts what we see in real life.  However, there was something that felt oddly superficial about it.

It shouldn’t have.  I mean, it recited the right messages.  I liked how social anxiety and talk about the Autistic spectrum were brought up.  Those were good messages.  Some of the messages about feminism and intersectionality were good as well.  BUT and I hate to say this, it almost felt like the author was copying and pasting these messages so to speak.

Yes, she said the right words.  But the book almost felt like a PSA since I didn’t really feel these characters.  For example, Charlie is bi and her ex boyfriend is a close minded bigot and there’s one scene where they have a discussion where he states he doesn’t believe that bisexual people exist.  It’s told in Taylor’s POV and we see that Charlie is upset but where this could’ve dived more into Charlie’s emotions and her reactions it just stops there.

Note,  if I would’ve wrote this review a couple of years ago I probably would’ve remarked that the bigot boyfriend was depicted unrealistically because surely most bigots wouldn’t be that openly disgusting with their hatred but after last year I’m going to give this a pass and actually state that his reaction is realistic.  It’s a shame I have to say this because how he acted should’ve been considered cartoonish.  But horrible is now acceptable now by a stupid part of society and…I’m going to have to stop myself again before I start ranting about stupid frogs.

The other lead, Taylor, has social anxiety, is on the spectrum, and is heavyset.  I thought there were some moments that really went into the issues she faces really well then it was dropped really sudden.  Same with the romance this character had, it really was never developed much and disappeared whenever it needed to.

Hell, I didn’t really care if any of these characters even got into a relationship they all sort of well, blended in.  Which is a shame because the book had so much to offer…

To be fair though, it’s one of the better books I’ve read by Swoon Reads.  I have had such bad luck with this imprint, I’m almost at the point of washing my hands with it all together but this one interested me so I was like why not.

And to be fair, it wasn’t that bad.  I mean, like I said it was probably one of the most inclusive books I’ve read this year and it did have a couple of moments that I really felt were well written but then it sort of turned into mush.

So, do I recommend this one…yes and no.  If you like the Convention Geek trend that’s going on in YA and don’t get annoyed with Youtube celebrities you’ll probably like this one.  However, if you read that premises and see all those scenes of  potential and then get annoyed with all the mush in-between then…sorry?

Overall Rating: C+ a lot of potential here but in the end I didn’t care for this one.  Still, a C+ from this imprint is almost like an A so hey….improvements.

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6 thoughts on “Trend I Hate the Famous Youtuber: Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

  1. Interesting book, but are you saying Swoon Reads doesn’t have well-written stories? I’ve never been on Swoon Reads before, but I was going to check out the website.

    • From what I’ve read Swoon Reads has been hit or miss. And the misses have been memorable misses (not a good thing). Does that mean that there aren’t some great titles published by them…no. I’m just very weary since I have been burnt by them more than once. To be fair to them though, a lot of other publishing companies and imprints have published some not so great work as well. So, if you’re willing to try some of their books go ahead.

  2. I’ve heard so many people rave about how amazing this book was, so it’s refreshing to have a not-so-starry-eyed perspective.

    I’m bothered by the trope of famous youtuber/blogger characters as well, but I’d never really put it into words until I saw your posts about it. It does seem a lot like pandering, and I think it sends an unrealistic message especially to teenagers. I’m pretty sure anyone who blogs or YouTubes (is that a verb?) knows that it takes a lot of work and a serious amount of luck to actually become “famous” – and that fame looks a lot different than it does for other professions.

    I still want to read Queens of Geek, purely for the diversity elements and the bi rep, but I imagine I’ll be bothered in the same ways that you were. Thanks for reviewing honestly!

    • The diversity elements are fairly decent for the most part. But I really wish she’d go into more of the issues more. It’s an odd thing to describe I almost want to say there were bits of it that felt like some of these characteristics were almost tokenisms but at the same time she did a fairly decent job describing some of the issues that these characters face. Maybe if she would’ve stuck with one viewpoint it might’ve came off better-I feel like both Charlie and Taylor had stuff that should’ve been explored more than it was.

      • I often feel let down reading books told from multiple perspectives, like I wanted more time spent in specific characters’ heads that just isn’t possible when you have multiple narrators. Then again, I’m often left wanting more from books, particularly when they have representation that I don’t see often enough. Maybe I’m just a needy reader, haha.

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