Cover Image: Bookish and the Beast

Bookish and the Beast

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Member Reviews

An amazing third installment to Ashley Poston’s Once Upon a Con series! This time, she wonderfully incorporates Beauty and the Beast, with several clever nods to the 1991 Disney version.

Vance, the actor who plays Sond in the Starfield films, is sent off to a small town after an accident, hiding from the media. Rosie, a Sond fangirl, is still grieving the lost of her mother, and having to fight off the unwanted advances of the homecoming king. A chance encounter leads to Rosie having to organize the sci-fi library in the big house that Vance is staying in, but they are barely even friends... until somebody bends (okay I tried, but I am not as masterful as Poston at this!).

This is such a fun take on the tale, and it was really nice checking in some of the characters from the previous novels. I do think they can be read as standalones, but it’s more satisfying to read them in order. This one has less of the convention setting, but I think that was fine for this plot. I also liked the LGBT+ representation as well. Overall, good fluff! I love those tropes too, Ashley!

I recommend this to anyone who loves Beauty & Beast, congoers, and fans of YA in general. Fantastic read.

5 stars

Thanks to Quirk Books and NetGalley for this copy, in exchange for a fair and honest review.
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Rosie loves books. She got her love of it from her mom. Vance is a spoiled actor that is struggling with finding his place in the world. When their worlds collide, both of them find out that not everything is what it appears to be and that you cannot judge a book by its cover. This Beaty and the Beast retell was original but had enough connection to the story to pull on our heartstrings. Told in alternating POV, you get to see inside the heads of both characters and really become part of the story. I would recommend this book and cannot wait to read more from this author.
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Loved the first book - LOOOOVED the second book - the third unfortunately just didn't land as well for me. I still love Ashley's writing, and the whole universe she's created, but there wasn't enough tension. The two leads clearly don't really belong together, there's nothing that I could see that would remotely attract them to each other bar their hotness, and the story seemed to be shoehorned into the B&TB tropes and plot points rather than follow them organically.

I think it's because the characters feel surface level. Everything interesting that happened to them happened in the past. They're basically cooped up together doing.... not much. And the stakes weren't very high. Neither of them had much agency. Vance was the more interesting of the two, but I still didn't feel.... anything. I actually felt more connected to Space Dad than anyone else. 

Otherwise? I'm sorry I couldn't give this a higher rating, because I really enjoyed the first two and think Ashley's great!
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I adore this series, these are the perfect books for teen girls to just sit and get lost in. Rosie is adorable and down to earth which makes her the perfect character to cheer for in love and life. While this wasn't my favorite of the series (I LOVED Geekerella), fans of Ashley Poston's - and Beauty & The Beast fanatics - must pick up this third installment in the Once Upon A Con series!
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Beauty and Beast trope with a library thrown in for good measure? Bring it on!

“A girl from the middle of nowhere meeting the guy she fell in love with at a comic-con, only to find out that he was a jerk of an actor, and yet . . .”

I felt this one is as good as and possibly better than Geekerella. Loved the banter between the main characters. Also the relationship between Rosie and her father. I liked that this one focuses on a “villain” who turns out to be just human. 

The Beauty (I mean The Bookish):
I loved how everything bookish is described as if they are love letters to books and libraries themselves. And music to a book lover’s ears.

“But there is so much more in those words than just loving books. I love the smell of them. I love the way their bindings look pressed together on a shelf. I love the feel of pages buzzing through my fingers. I love big books and small books. I love words and how they’re strung together, and most of all, I  love the stories. I love how books are not really just books at all, but doorways. They are portals into places I’ve never been and people I’ll never be, and in them I have lived a thousand lives and seen a thousand different worlds.”

“Don’t go falling in love with a library, now. Especially one you can’t own.” “Can’t I fall in love just a little? At least books won’t break my heart.” 
“Then clearly you haven’t read the books I have.”

The Beast:
The only thing I felt there was a bit too much of is pop culture/literary references. I could have done with a few less. For that I’d dock half a point.

Thank you Ashley Poston, Quirk books and Netgalley for providing the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

P.S. I think this line needs to be on the cover: “Maybe I can tempt you to the dark side with hot chocolate and a good book.”
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Great addition to the Once Upon a Con series.  Recommended to fans of the previous books and of Beauty and the Beast retellings.  Can be read as a standalone but would recommend reading the other books in the series to better understand the Starfield references.
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This was definitely the right book to read during the first couple of days of Covid-19 quarantine: a fun and fluffy modern beauty and the beast rewrite, full of cute fanfic tropes.  Bookish and the Beast is set in the same continuity as the previous Once Upon a Con books, and while the main characters are new, there are cameos from many of the previous main characters.  

Rosie Thorne, our Beauty stand-in, is a small town high schooler who lost her Mom a year before the store begins.  She loves her librarian Dad, her two best friends, and Starfield.  One day she chases after a lost dog, and a series of mishaps leads to her working off a debt in the library of a sort of castle owned by a mysterious millionaire.  The library is full of the coolest sci-fi collection Rosie has ever seen, including a full set of the hard to find Starfield novels.  It would be a great gig if not for being forced to put up with spoiled movie star Vance Reigns, one of the stars of the current Starfield movies.  

Vance has been sent to this small town to basically get a break from the tabloids and think about his poor life choices.  He hates everything about it, especially the local girl who worms her way into his new house.  Things get even more complicated when Rosie and Vance realize they've met before, when they were both cosplaying at a convention several months back and spent a fantastic night wandering around Atlanta together (in masks of course).  

Bookish and the Beast is of course pretty predictable, but as that's pretty much the nature of romantic comedies I don't really care.  I wasn't looking for twists and turns here.  The book is full of fun references, including a scene that is a direct homage to the most hilarious scene in Howl's Moving Castle.  There's even a local Gaston stand in, constantly trying to manipulate Rosie into being his date for homecoming.  Of course things work out in the end, and we get a sweet epilogue checking in with our characters a few months later.  

If you like fan conventions, fairy tale retellings, high school romantic comedies, or reading cute fanfic, then give this series a try.  It's a lot of fun.
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Adorable follow-up to the first two books in the series. This Beauty and the Beast mix-up does the original story justice. It has the romance and comedy of the first two in the series. It incorporates enough of the formers characters to satisfy former readers but not confuse new readers (although it is best read in sequence.) The only downside to this book was that it didn't take place at a "con"; the characters had a brief meeting before the book opens at a "con"; otherwise, there is no cosplay involved in this story. Because of that element, I would say this is the weakest of the three books but still a strong series.
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This series is kind of a guilty pleasure for me and I absolutely adore the mix between fandom and the stanned, but the connection between this fairytale and the storyline was a little less connected than the others so I enjoyed it a lil less.
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Though this wasn't as good as the previous two books, Ashely Poston still manages to create a fun and warm world in which her characters grow and blossom and I still thoroughly enjoyed reading this book.
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I loved the modern retelling of Beauty and the Beast that Ashley Poston gave! 

The protagonist, Rosie Throne, is a strong and developed female character that didn't let herself feel pressured by others. I loved how Rosie's story wasn't just about her romance with Vance, but also about healing from losing someone important to you. All the characters were well developed and I really enjoyed reading about them. Well, except for Garrett. That man needs a lesson in the word "no." 

I loved the slow burn relationship found between Vance and Rosie. Reminded me of a great AO3 book, I would waste all day reading to reach the final fairytale ending. You could tell their chemistry was natural and the development of Vance's character due to Rosie's kind presence was amazing. 

I do wish there was more dialogue between Vance and Rosie though, as I felt the pool house scene was one of the only times we saw them have a long, deep conversation, besides their time at ExcelsiCon. 

Overall, I found the story to be an enjoyable read.

Thank you to NetGalley and Quirk Books for providing an ARC of this book to read and review.
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This is the third installment in the Once Upon a Con series and I have to say I enjoyed this book as much as the previous novels in the series. Bookish and the Beast was so cute, Ashley Poston just has a way of writing characters and situations that are really relatable. While Poston doesn’t delve too much in the history of our main character, Rosie, and the love interest, Vance,  I still feel their romance played out really well. I hope this isn’t the last we see of this series.
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Well, I read it because of the obvious nod to Beauty and the Beast, with an emphasis on books. And I was not disappointed in those 2 aspects. However, I did not really enjoy the writing. Everything felt both overwritten and incomplete at once. The plot was fun to get behind and it was nice when I realized another B&B element had been introduced. But it just isn’t very well written, IMHO. I didn’t love it. I didn’t hate it. It was just okay.
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<i>Bookish and the Beast</i> is a really cute YA book in Poston's Once Upon a Con series. I wish more series like this were around when I was a teenager. Its characters are geeky and fully embrace it. It was really fun to read a series that offers an inclusive set of characters who are confident in who they are. My only complaint is the "Space Dad" parts were a little creepy. Mentioning it once in passing would have been fine, but one teenage character's constant harpy on it made it a little gross. 

Thank you Netgalley for the ARC of this book.
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Another great modern fairytale adaptation from Ashley Poston.  Rosie Thorne has had a tough year.  She's at a loss about what to write for her college application essay and doesn't want to leverage her mother's death to get into school.  A chance encounter with a german shepherd leads Rose straight to the infamous actor Vance Reigns and a job cataloging a personal library.  Rose and Vance get to know one another through an exploration of Starfield novels and their friendship just might give both of them something to look forwards to.

I love how Posten has woven a series of books together about fandom for obscure science fiction and the movies it can create.  It was also delightful to get glimpses of the characters from the other stories.
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This one followed the same style as the other retellings in the series. Cute and fun with slightly predictable characters and story.
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I really love this series, of geeky retelling of fairytale. And, if I had to rank the three that have been released so far I think this might just be my favourite. The Beauty and The Beast is an extremely problematic story when you really think about it - particularly Stockholm syndrome! - yet Poston reinvents the tale with ease. This story, of a book nerd meeting a fallen prince of Hollywood is engrossing and incredibly lovely. There's a great balance of references to the other two stories - you don't have to have read them, but you are rewarded on updates on those characters if you have. A really sweet romance that is utterly charming!
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I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher. This in no way impacted on my view.

I never for one minute imagined that I would be approved for a review copy of this book, no matter how much I loved the previous books, so when my copy arrived, and on my birthday too, I couldn't stop myself from starting it as soon as I was able to, and devoured the entire book in less than a day!

This time around, we have Vance's story. Now, I didn't know what I would think, because I wasn't keen on him in the previous book, The Princess and the Fangirl. After crashing his car into a lake, with Elle there too, he's sent to a small town, basically in exile. All he can do is count down the days until his 18th birthday, when he can get himself home. He comes across local girl, Rosie, when she quite literally falls in front of him, straight into the swimming pool at his borrowing castle-home, taking a first edition Starfield novel with her. To pay off her debt over the book, she has to reorganise the library in the house - more like a dream rather than a chore - but Vance is being awful, and makes everything awkward. For Rosie, she's coping with the loss of her mother the year before, and being close to all these books - some which remind her of her mother just by being there - and trying to get over the cosplayer she met at the ExcelsiCon Ball last year. The more and more that Vance and Rosie spend time together, the more they see the real people, and could they just be the two cosplayers who spent all night together at the ball last summer?

As apprehensive as I was about whether I would like Vance or not, that soon wasn't an issue because his chapters were insightful, and real, and I ended up loving him. Not as much as Rosie, mind. Rosie is my favourite of all of Poston's heroines, and I adored her chapters. She was wacky and real, and didn't take any of Vance's crap, which was refreshing for both me and for Vance, who is used to people pandering to him. The secondary characters, like Rosie's best friends Annie and Quinn, her dad (Space Dad), and Vance's uncle, Elias, were also fabulous, and made the story. The chemistry between Vance and Rosie, too, was off the charts, and they might be my favourite couple of the series.

Being the final book (I think?) in the Once Upon a Con series, it was perfect to see characters from the previous books in cameo positions, especially Imogen who has become a proper friend to Vance after their disastrous pseudo date in book 2. Everything that I needed to be tied together, definitely was, and I could not have asked for a better conclusion to this series! I haven't read Poston's other series, but reckon I'll buy them as soon as I can. This is definitely a series every geek or book lover should read!
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Thank you, NetGalley for this fantastic contemporary! Bookish and the Beast, the delightful and charming third book the the Once Upon a Con series, may be my favorite of the series thanks to the ever-apparent nostalgia of the fairy tale and the outstanding voice of both main characters, Rosie and Vance. Poston's brilliant nods to the classic fairy tale made my childish and romantic heart swoon and skip in every chapter. From Mrs. Potts at the diner, to "beastly" references about Vance, and a hopelessly ignorant and clueless updated Gaston-ian villain in the form of Garrett, this retelling will truly stand out among the rest with fans of the classic tale. The addition of a strong, and more importantly, diverse support group (a non-binary best friend along with a bisexual father to name a couple) for Rosie, AKA Belle, makes it all the more relatable for today's teens. Readers will easily fall in love not only with the slow-burn and budding romance of Rosie and Vance but also in those characters ability to love themselves despite a society that may not always understand the quiet book nerd and beastly bad boy celebrity. 
Bookish and the Beast will appeal to fans of Rainbow Rowell, Julie Buxbaum, and Jennifer Dugan.
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#BookishandtheBeast #NetGalley
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the E-arc copy of this novel.
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