Bookish and the Beast

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Pub Date 04 Aug 2020 | Archive Date 16 Nov 2020

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An enchanting YA romance from the New York Times best-selling author of The Dead Romantics.

A tale as old as time is made new in Ashley Poston's fresh, geeky retelling of Beauty and the Beast.

Rosie Thorne is feeling stuck—on her college application essays, in her small town, and on that mysterious General Sond cosplayer she met at ExcelsiCon. Most of all, she’s stuck in her grief over her mother’s death. Her only solace was her late mother’s library of rare Starfield novels, but even that disappeared when they sold it to pay off hospital bills.

On the other hand, Vance Reigns has been Hollywood royalty for as long as he can remember—with all the privilege and scrutiny that entails. When a tabloid scandal catches up to him, he’s forced to hide out somewhere the paparazzi would never expect to find him: Small Town USA. At least there’s a library in the house. Too bad he doesn’t read.

When Vance’s and Rosie’s paths collide, sparks do not fly. But as they begrudgingly get to know each other, their careful masks come off—and they may just find that there’s more risk in shutting each other out than in opening their hearts.
An enchanting YA romance from the New York Times best-selling author of The Dead Romantics.

A tale as old as time is made new in Ashley Poston's fresh, geeky retelling of Beauty and the Beast.


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ISBN 9781683691938
PRICE $18.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 325 members

Featured Reviews


Bookish & the Beast is officially my favorite Once Upon A Con book. I cannot WAIT to buy it, and add it to my collection, and pour over it again when it gets published in June!

Ashley does a fantastic job of taking the Beauty and the Beast plot we all know and reinventing it in smart ways that work, including character origins. I especially think that using Vance's status as a Hollywood heir works perfectly to match the original tale of a prince cursed and cast away! Bookish is also full of references to make any media consumer smile - from fandom to books to dating sims and a particularly wonderful Howl's Moving Castle reference.

Also, this book - and all the books in the series! - feature a diverse and wonderful cast of characters. Come for the fairy tale retelling, but stay for the hijinks and laughter and swoon-worthy romance! I can't wait to see this published and to get my hands on her next book! 🥰

Also, thanks to Netgalley and Quirk Books for providing me access to an e-ARC of this for consumption and review!

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I love Ashley! I love everything she writes. This was lived up to my expectations. I love how inclusive she is and her writing style. I cannot wait until it comes out, it needs to sit on my shelf.

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Ashley Poston is back with another engrossing novel which readers will find extremely hard to put down. Set within the same universe as her previous novels, Ashley has once again taken the reader in to an immersive world that many in fandoms can relate to. This time with a modern and very relevant telling of the classic tale of Beauty and The Beast.

This is a book you become thoroughly engrossed in, perfect for curling up on the sofa or in the bath and reading in one sitting. Ashley creates characters that every reader can relate to and in settings many have experienced themselves. All Ashley's novels while set in the same universe are standalone so can be read without having read her other novels. Ashley Poston is an author whose work gets better with every release and is definitely one to read if you haven't already!

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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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Bookish and the Beast by Ashley Poston is the third book in her Once Upon a Con series, of which I’ll admit I have not read any of the prior books yet. I wish I had because I feel it might have given me an edge on some of the other side characters that popped up, but not having read the first two books did not take away from me loving this book.
This book is a nod to book lovers and the tropes we adore and hoard and search for obsessively in fanfic because it has a special place in our hearts and we want/need more of it. Rosie is a spitfire with an amazing support group behind her, her dad and two best friend’s are precious cinnamon rolls and I feel fine admitting that in this book review because, again, this book is a nod to fanfic lovers and I will write this post like I’m review a fanfic. Vance is the bad boy with a heart of gold, whose just really misunderstood, but honestly if he communicated a little bit (ie at all) would have been understood pretty well.
This book has a great library, lots of misunderstandings, meet cute/meet awful (they meet twice), a Cinderella like meeting and departure without a shoe to find the other character again, enemies to friends to lovers, a non-binary character and a bi-character actively, puns, dad jokes, disney jokes/nods, and two people who just really need to sit in a room and talk, but if that had happened we wouldn’t have had this cute read so it’s okay. They eventually talk anyway.
Not my usual read but this was cute and enjoyable.
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher I was able to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

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I really love the world Ashley Poston has created. I really enjoyed the fairytale plot and the way it has been brought up to date, with more diverse characters and great lgbt rep.

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Such a sweet story. I definitely fangirled over this fandom that Poston has created and now need to re-read the series immediately as I impatiently wait for the 4th book in this series. I love that Poston brings her characters back to cameo in her new stories, it ties everything together so beautifully, This is a great summer read and good for all ages in the YA realm for content. I loved all the sly references to real fandoms in the world. This one will definitely make a nerdy (or geeky!) heart beat a little faster.

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Bookish and the Beast follows Rosie Thorne, a Starfield fan who lives in a small town, and Vance Reigns, a Starfield actor who is only seen as a bad boy by all gossip and news sources. Rosie and Vance’s lives are thrust together once Vance is basically exiled to her town by his stepfather and the two have a very unexpected run in.
Bookish and the Beast is the third book in the Once Upon a Con series, but they are all companions to each other so you technically do not have to read them in order. Having read them all myself, I do recommend reading them in publishing order because the characters from each book make appearances in the rest and it is exciting to see them and know their backgrounds.
The whole Once Upon a Con series centers around the Starfield fandom and the new movies and actors in them. In the past books I have LOVED seeing the con in the stories because it brings this heightened level of fandom that I feel many people can relate to. Bookish and the Beast is the one book out of the series that has the least to do with the con, but I did not feel at a loss without it. I say this because we still get to see the love for the fandom through Rosie as she is working in a library where she is surrounded by Starfield books.
Onto the romance, Rosie and Vance are two people who come together with their own pasts and baggage. Vance is only seen as a bad boy and doesn’t feel the need to be seen as anything else. Rosie is dealing with the loss of her mom and she is also trying her best to get into college. With these characters being forced to be together, they slowly begin to show their real selves and it leads to a beautiful yet interesting friendship/relationship.
The books in the Once Upon a Con series are retelling of classic fairytales and I feel that this book was the one that most reflected the original story and it was truly a delight! These books are such joys to read and I highly recommend them to anyone, but especially to those who are part of any fandom.

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Ashley Poston has done it again with her third entry in her Once Upon a Con series. This time Poston puts her unique nerdy spin on the classic Beauty and Beast tale. Rosie and Vance are heartbreakingly adorable. I can't wait to return once again to the halls of ExcelsiCon!

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I really enjoyed this book! This series is a love letter to nerds and I love it. This book is a lot of fun and I'm a sucker for people who are annoyed about being in love with each other! I thought their romance was super cute and I liked how their feelings developed. I also love the friendship between Vance and Imogen from the previous book. I had a couple of issues with the ending, though.

Spoilers below:
Why did he automatically decide that she must have leaked the video? He knew she'd lost her phone literally the previous day. He had no real reason to assume it was her. Then at the dance, I thought the fight scene was odd. What was the point of that? Why have Rosie destroy the jerk's face? I mean, Garrett deserved it, but there's no way she'd be able to give him a bloody nose and then continue on without getting in trouble. It was an odd way to handle the final confrontation.

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As wonderfully charming as the prior books in the series! But could definitely be read as a stand-alone. This is a quiet little book, with less frenetic action than Geekerella or The Princess and the Fangirl, and that allows it to spend a lot of time really exploring the main characters. As ever, Poston includes lots of easter eggs for other geeks and for lovers of fairy tales. I thoroughly enjoyed this book!

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Ashley Poston does it again! I adored this book; Beauty and the Beast is one of my favourite fairy tales, and Ashley brought it to life in a totally delightful way.
The characters were real, the representation was awesome to see, and the story was exactly as sweet as I had hoped.
All in all, a lovely afternoon's read, best enjoyed with a cup of tea and homemade peanut butter cookies.

Look to the stars. Aim. Ignite!

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Bookish and the Beast was a fantastic end to the Geekerella trilogy. While it did not take place at ExcelsiCon, it still captured the pure geekiness of the previous 2 books and made wish even more for more Starfield!

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I love this series and was so excited to read this next story. I didn't know how she was going to do a Beauty and the Beast retelling (I've read many bad retellings of this fairytale) in the format of this series. Thankfully, this story was wonderful and Poston outdid herself. Each book in this series keeps getting better and better. I don't want to spoil too much about the retelling aspect, but I'll say that it was smart, funny, and a version of this story I've never seen told this way before (in the best way). The characters were compelling, and like her other characters, ones I wanted to be friends with in real life. Of course, as a librarian, I instantly loved the library in this story and that her dad is a librarian! I hope Poston keeps writing more and more in this series.

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This is by far the best instalment in this series. I think it might be the last, but I’m hoping there will be more. There’s always Calvin to pair up with a love interest, right? RIGHT? 

I absolutely love the interpretation of the Beauty and the Beast story to fit the romance between Rosie and Vance.  

There are a few parts that require a suspension of disbelief, but these are easily forgiven, because if it’s destined to happen, maybe these aren’t eyeball-rolling coincidences and are actually the fates working their magic.  After reading the first two in this series, I’d already jumped on the bandwagon of believing that ExcelsiCon has some sort of sorcery that makes the cast of Starfield fall in love with mere commoners. I guess I just took each of these silly little “coincidences” in stride.


Vance is my favourite of the love interests in the Once Upon a Con series. He's a ladies' man, a child actor born into the business, and he has a lot of well-concealed self-loathing.  We met him in The Princess and the Fangirl, albeit briefly, and he was presented as quite the a**hat.  I was surprised to learn that he would be in the third book in the series, based on the way he was presented.  But then I realized that this was incredibly exciting, allowing for the opportunity for an compelling redemption arc, just like his character General Sond in the Starfield universe.

Rosie is my favourite type of protagonist. I love that she's the bookworm type who also sometimes gets attention from boys - which is evident in the case that Garrett (essentially Gaston from Beauty and the Beast) won't take no for an answer when he repeatedly asks her to Homecoming. In books like these, I like to see that the protagonist has seen some interest from boys but turns them down, because then when Vance falls for her, we don't think that she's falling for him back because she's never had someone interested in her before.  If that makes sense?  She loves him for him, not because of the attention he's giving her (despite the fact that the attention he gives her is a lot sweeter and more romantic than that douche Garrett--but that really adds to the humour of the entire situation).


The parallels between the world of Starfield and what is happening in the novel are just as pronounced in this book as they are in the previous instalments. However, as mentioned in my review of The Princess and the Fangirl, if you haven't read Geekerella, the world of Starfield might be somewhat confusing and harder to appreciate in this book.  We don't learn as much about the original television series, but this novel focuses more on the series/ book adaptations, which allows for General Sond to have a redemption arc and far more screentime than the original series.

I recommend this book to any nerd at heart who is looking for a sweet and funny romantic retelling of Beauty and the Beast.

*This review will be posted to on June 5, 2020*

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