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BOOK REVIEW: Bookish & The Beast

Bookish & The Beast (Once Upon a Con #3) by Ashley Poston
Publication Date: August 4, 2020 (Originally June 16, 2020)

This is the third book in the Once Upon a Con series and it is a loose Beauty and the Beast retelling. You do not need to read the other books in the series to understand this one, but I highly recommend it! Geekerella is one of my all-time favorite YA books. I wasn’t as big of a fan of The Princess and The Fangirl (read my review here), but I still was super excited to read this one.

Rosie Thorne is a bookish geek who had a ~moment~ with a boy in cosplay at the last ExcelisCon and can’t stop thinking about him. Meanwhile, Vance Reign was born and raised in Hollywood and after a scandal has been sent to live in a small town to calm down. A mishap that leads to a priceless Starfield book being damaged forces Rosie and Vance have to work together catalog the library at the house Vance is staying at. Of course, they don’t get along, but what if there was something there that wasn’t there before??

I love Beauty and the Beast retellings. Do I think there are a lot of them? Oh yes, but I usually enjoy them. I love the Disney movie; I wish I knew how many times I watched my old VHS tape of the movie, because it was A LOT.

WHAT I LOVED:

  • It just so CUTE
  • I loved the characters Rosie is a bookworm with a heart of gold (and a villain lover) while Vance is a grumpy boy who doesn’t think he deserves friendship or love or anything
  • THE TROPES!! Stuck in the rain! Falling down the stairs! I have to stay at your house with my dad (not clickbait)
  • The fandom references. These books are truly an ode to fandom and Ashley mentioned AO3, The Last Jedi, The Great British Bake Off, FANGIRL, & More.
    • “LIKE THE SCENE FROM FANGIRL???” DEAD
  • I loved seeing the characters from the other novels in this one. Elle, Darien, and Jess are not really mentioned, but Imogen plays a nice part
  • Rosie’s friends
    • One of them is Nonbinary and the friend group is trying to get them elected as homecoming overlord? We stan
  • I read this in one sitting. Which is something I used to do all the time, but haven’t done in months and I missed it so much. I stayed up until 12:13 am which for me is actually late now
  • This is a solid retelling. The main plot works with the original story, but there are also some more subtle references which were nice
    • There was a moment that I literally set the book down and covered my mouth in a silent scream because I GOT WHAT ASHLEY WAS DOING with a tiny blink and you’ll miss it moment
      • I apparently have more emotion tied to the Beauty and the Beast story that I thought

WHAT I DID NOT LOVE:

  • I thought everything could have been expanded a bit more, this book is less then 300 pages and there could have been more depth
  • Some things seemed slightly inconsistent, like she hurts her ankle and then two chapters later is walking? TBH I could have missed it and also I read an ARC so this could be fixed in the future.
  • Also, I’m sad this book does not take place at a convention!

Overall, this book brought me so much joy and if you have enjoyed the previous books in the series, I highly recommend this one. If you have not read Geekerella, I recommend picking up that one first!

5/5 stars

     xoxo, Tree 

*Thank you so much to Quirk books for an ARC of this one; all thoughts are my own*

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