Cover Image: Dungeons and Drama

Dungeons and Drama

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Great fun. I'm not in the YA demographic, but I enjoy her books. Light-hearted, heartfelt stories. Highly recommended!

Was this review helpful?

This actually feels like a younger YA, which honestly there aren't enough of and I love that. It was fun, it was light, it was easy to read, and I am certain that my younger self would have eaten this up. Could have used more of the actual D&D playing, but I think that was intentional for people who aren't familiar with the game.

Was this review helpful?

This was completely delightful. I love every single one of Kristy Boyce's YA romances and this was not an exception. The interiority of her protagonists and the swoon-factor of her romance scenes are both on point. This fake dating book, filled with lots of geek and musical theater culture, is practically perfect.

After theater-obsessed Riley is caught driving her mom's car to go see Waitress the musical in Columbus (without a license!) she is grounded indefinitely. Her divorced parents decide to punish her by making her work in her father's gaming store. When her ex boyfriend comes into the store, Riley lies that she is dating one of her classmates and coworkers, Nathan, the cute D&D aficionado. She convinces Nathan that the ruse will also help his crush pay more attention to him. In order to make the relationship seem more real, Riley joins the D&D group and finds herself liking the game -- and Nathan -- more than she expected.

Was this review helpful?

There were two different sides of me that read this novel. The first side struggled to get into this book and found it to be on the younger side of young adult. The second side of me absolutely fell in love with this book the moment the tropes entered the scene. What can I say? I’m a romance reader who loves seeing different scenarios involving fake dating.

However, my opinion still stands that this book falls on the younger side of young adult. The ages of our characters aren’t fully confirmed, but based on context clues they fall between the ages of 15 to 17. (Nathan has his driver’s license, while Riley is close to getting hers.) The writing style was akin to middle grade—where the emphasis was on the character voices and plot, but not necessarily details and depth. I was surprised to see how well that style worked for me. It helped add to Riley’s voice, the story’s plot, and the writing was enough to still draw out the emotions of this book.

Another element that drew out emotionality was the utilized tropes! Of course, we have the fake dating set up (so both Nathan and Riley could make other love interests interested in them), and I am a sucker for that trope. But I want to focus on the slight use of the miscommunication trope here. Normally, that is used for the third act breakup and that was no different in this plot. But, unlike with adult novels, I found the trope worked incredibly well here—arguably, better than any adult book I’ve seen use it. And that was due to the age and maturity of the characters. Let’s be real: when you’re in high school, there’s a lot going on. Hormones are raging, emotions can be volatile, and you’re still figuring out how to express thoughts and emotions to other people. Every time Riley held back her true thoughts and feelings—thereby using the miscommunication trope—it felt honest.

I was surprised by the amount of giggly emotion I felt throughout the book. I was not expecting to feel all the warm fuzzies and that is due to Riley being a strong main character. She knew what she wanted, was honest with herself (even if she held back her feelings from others), and chased after her dreams. But she was also balanced out well with Nathan, who was truly one of the sweetest teenage boys I have read about. (The temple kisses? The back hugs? *swoons*) Watching the two of them balance each other out, push each other to try new things, and support each other was incredibly sweet to experience.

While I may not be a D&D player, this novel made the concept of the game accessible and fun to read about. I loved being a part of Riley’s character journey as she worked toward her goals and found love along the way.

Thank you to Delacorte Press and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of this book.

Was this review helpful?

This book is sweet and fun, for drama nerds and gamer nerds alike. I adored the progress of Riley and Nathan's friendship. I loved seeing the gamer community so perfectly represented. And that's someone who loves gaming can love board games, D&D, video games, tabletops, etc. I think I liked the gaming aspects more than theatre kid aspects. Those parts felt a tad like an episode of Glee, but I still enjoyed it. I love the comparison of roleplaying and theatre. Overall, an enjoyable read!

Was this review helpful?

I really enjoyed this sweet story! If you’re looking for a quick, fun YA romance full of broadway musical and D&D/gaming references, look no further!! The characters were likable and felt like real people and the fake dating trope was perfectly presented. There is even some real depth when it comes to the familial relationships and friendships. I would love to see more from this gang!

Was this review helpful?

I read this one because my high schooler is getting into D&D and he wanted to know if he could read it. I said yes! This YA romance is so adorable, and I love a fake dating trope!

Was this review helpful?

This was such a cute read! I have been recommending it to those coming in for dungeons and dragons stuff or theater kids. The story was very sweet, the fake dating awesome.

Was this review helpful?

Dungeons and Drama is a fun teen romance. It mixes relatable teen coming-of-age with gaming and family drama, making it both funny and touching. The characters feel real as they deal with friendship, love, and figuring out who they are. The main characters have a smart repartee, and the story is easy to relate to. If you like stories about young love with a nerdy twist, you'll enjoy "Dungeons and Drama."

Was this review helpful?

As a reformed theatre kid, did I cringe through 50% of this book? Yes.
Did I kinda hate seeing myself as the D&D nerd that I currently am? Yes.

Did I think that the story was cute and stereotypically accurate? Also yes.

Was this review helpful?

Riley is forced to work at her dad’s game shop as a punishment for driving unlicensed with her mom’s car. With a musical to save, Riley strikes a deal with Nathan to take her shifts in exchange for faking dating him to make his gamer crush jealous.

When a musical you and your bestie want to see is hours away, and your mom is out of town, of course you “borrow” the car and hit the road… right? For unlicensed Riley that was the wrong decision, and she now sits sulking in her mom’s car as they drive to her punishment, working eight long weeks at her dad’s game shop. The same game shop that caused her parents to divorce five years ago. The very one she has never stepped foot in because it clearly meant more to her dad then his own daughter. What else could go wrong? The school cancels the spring musical she was desperate to direct. Unfortunately, there is not enough time to concentrate on both work and having to find a musical miracle!

Opportunity presents itself when Riley’s ex-boyfriend parades his new girlfriend at the game shop. To save face Riley tells him she is also dating someone new, fellow employee Nathan. Nathan is against the idea of fake dating until Riley explains that it would make his gamer crush Sophia jealous. He agrees, and in exchange he takes on some of her shifts so she can concentrate on operation save the school musical. Fake dating Nathan also means participating in a Dungeon & Dragons game he plays at the shop with his friends. She soon realizes that playing D&D is not just a game, it is just like theater! This world that she never wanted part of begins to look different and everything soon feels more real than fake.

Thank you Netgalley for an e-arc of this book for an honest review. This was a great read!

Was this review helpful?

This was a cute YA romance, that definitely skews a bit younger. I was drawn to it by the D&D element, something that has gotten much more mainstream and popular in recent years. I think romance readers who enjoy table top gaming or theater will enjoy this one. There was also some great plot points within the story like dealing with divorced parents, parents with health issues, issues balancing school and extracurriculars, and belonging. Will be recommending to students. (Thanks to Netgalley and Delacorte for the ARC)

Was this review helpful?

This was a sweet YA book. I liked the drama and the addition of the game store/D&D element was really neat.

I received an advance copy. All thoughts are my own.

Was this review helpful?

This book was so cute!


I didn’t know much about D&D except for what I saw in the tv show stranger things but I really enjoyed it in this book! I was laughing and smiling a lot throughout and I EAT UP FAKE DATING TROPE and it was done sooo well!! Absolutely love this book!

If you want a cute little not your average romcom book to read then I would pick this up!

Thanks NetGalley for the eARC Copy 🙂

Was this review helpful?

This is such a cute book which will make all of us nerds extremely happy. I absolutely love the fake dating trope in Dungeons and Drama and Nathan and Riley's dynamic was adorable. I also really enjoyed Riley's relationship with her parents and how that developed throughout the book. I would highly recommend this to all YA contemporary romance readers.

Was this review helpful?

god this book was so cute are you kidding??? YA romances like these really get me in my feels and all I want to do is cry about them, in a good way of course! this book was funny and entertaining and just so adorable. I've reread it twice now. % stars all around. Congrats to the author for being able to write such a fun storyline. Will absolutely be recommending.

Was this review helpful?

Dungeons and Drama by Kristy Boyce is a great story. The beginning; however, dragged a bit too much. I had to stop and then go back to read later. Once past the beginning, the book’s pace picked up and was okay. I enjoyed the topics explored in this novel. I loved that is was music based. The characters were quirky and fun. Overall, it was a charming tale.

Was this review helpful?

I truly enjoyed this YA romance. It was fun to read and works through issues that many teens experience. Mainly, teens want to feel connected and fit in to a group. I loved how the characters were involved in games, musicals and plays which isn't your typical teen hobby. This book will be relatable to teen who love romance as well as musical references.

This will definitely be on my shelf soon. thank you for the advance copy.

Was this review helpful?

4.5 stars = I loved it! Would re-read.

This was SO fun! Laugh-out-loud funny. Fake dating + D&D + musical theatre. Fantastic characters. This was a delight to read from start to finish.

Was this review helpful?

Dungeons and Drama is a cute fake-dating romance - and a great pick for your theater and D&D loving teens.
The romance elements in this one aren't hot and heavy so it is perfect for younger teens who aren't ready for spicier romances and for anyone looking for a fun romance.
As a D&D player I appreciated the D&D scenes; to me they felt genuine.

I would recommend this one to folks looking for light or intro romance and folks interested in D&D and/or theater.

Thank you to NetGalley for my advanced reading copy.

Was this review helpful?