Fandom: some love it, others love to hate it. But we're pretty much all in one. Whether it's comics, Harry Potter, boy bands or television shows, we've all got something we're so totally in love with that it borders on obsession. But being part of a fandom is not just fun. Fandom can actually help people to cope with the hardships of real life, including a certain current presidency. Being part of a community of people who love the same things we do is just icing on the geeky cake.
Authors have been looking to fandom for their inspiration, too, especially in the last couple of years. There's something special about a book that fits seamlessly into an already existent fandom. Not only do you have a tailor made book club (whether online or in real life), you've got characters you can already relate to, who already love the same things you do and spend an entire book talking other character's ears off about them. Talk about dream book besties.
Just like Rainbow Rowell's Fangirl was the ultimate ode to boy wizards and those who love them, these seven new young adult books hitting the shelves in 2017 take on their own special brand of fan love. We've got stories that delve into everything from fan fiction to '90s boy and girl bands, internet celebrities, television shows and lots of nerd-tastic conventions. These are definitely books you're going to want to share with friends.
1'Geekerella' by Ashley Poston
A Cinderella re-imagining with a fandom twist, Geekerella follows Elle Wittime, who lives and breathes Starfield, the classic sci-fi series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter — because the grand prize is an invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck, and her dad’s old costume, Elle’s determined to win… unless her stepsisters get there first.
Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons— before he was famous. Playing Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake — until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise. But when she disappears at midnight, will he ever be able to find her again? Part romance, part love letter to nerd culture, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom.
2'Kat and Meg Conquer the World' by Anna Priemaza (Release Date: November 7, 2017)
Kat and Meg couldn’t be more different. Kat’s anxiety makes it hard for her to talk to new people. The only place she feels safe is in front of her computer, playing her favorite video game. Meg hates being alone, but her ADHD keeps pushing people away. But when the two girls are thrown together for a year-long science project, they discover they have one thing in common: their obsession with the online gaming star LumberLegs and his hilarious videos. Meg’s pretty sure this is fate. Kat doesn’t know how to deal with someone who talks faster than she thinks. But if they can stick together and stay out of their heads, they might figure out how to help each other—and build the kind of friendship Kat never knew she wanted and Meg never believed she’d find.
3'Queens of Geek' by Jen Wilde
Queens of Geek follows two best friends — one a bisexual young woman of color, the other a young woman with Autism dealing with anxiety — on the fandom weekend of a lifetime. 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, Jason 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.
4'Fireworks' by Katie Cotugno
Boy and girl band obsessives are going to fall hard for Katie Cotugno's latest, Fireworks, about a girl who is competing with her best friend to become the new pop star of the moment, set in Orlando during the late '90s. Olivia was the talented one, the one who had been training to be a star her whole life. Her best friend, Dana, was always on the sidelines, cheering her best friend along. But everything changes when Dana tags along with Olivia to Orlando for the weekend, where super-producer Guy Monroe is holding auditions for a new singing group, and Dana is discovered too. Dana, who’s never sung more than Olivia’s backup.
Next thing she knows, she and Olivia are training to be pop stars. It should be a dream come true, but as the days of grueling practice and constant competition take their toll, things between Olivia and Dana start to shift . . . and there’s only room at the top for one girl. For Olivia, it’s her chance at her dream. For Dana, it’s a chance to escape a future that seems to be closing in on her. And for these lifelong best friends, it’s the adventure of a lifetime—if they can make it through.
5'I Believe In A Thing Called Love' by Maureen Goo
First love and Korean Dramas combine in Maurene Goo's I Believe In a Thing Called Love. Desi Lee is a high school senior who is on her way to Stanford. She's got everything she's ever worked for...but she’s never had a boyfriend. She’s a total romantic disaster, a clumsy, stammering humiliation-magnet. So when the hottest human specimen to have ever lived walks into her life one day, Desi decides to tackle her flirting failures with the same zest she’s applied to everything else in her life. She finds her answer in the Korean dramas her father has been obsessively watching for years, where the hapless heroine always seems to end up in the arms of her true love. Armed with her “K Drama Rules for True Love,” Desi goes after the moody, elusive artist Luca Drako. Cinematic boat rescues, love triangles, and fake car crashes ensue. But when the fun and games turn to true feels, Desi finds out that real love is about way more than just drama.
6'Stranger Than Fanfiction' by Chris Colfer
Chris Colfer takes a break from writing his magical middle grade series for this YA novel about Cash Carter, the young, world famous lead actor of the hit television show Wiz Kids. When four fans jokingly invite him on a cross-country road trip, they are shocked that he actually takes them up on it. Chased by paparazzi and hounded by reporters, this unlikely crew takes off on a journey of a lifetime. But along the way they discover that the star they love has deep secrets he's been keeping. What they come to learn about the life of the mysterious person they thought they knew will teach them about the power of empathy and the unbreakable bond of true friendship.
7'Tash Hearts Tolstoy' by Kathryn Ormsbee (Release Date: June 6, 2017)
After a shout-out from one of the Internet’s superstar vloggers, Natasha “Tash” Zelenka finds herself and her obscure, amateur web series, Unhappy Families, thrust into the limelight: She’s gone viral. Her show is a modern adaptation of Anna Karenina — written by Tash’s literary love, Leo Tolstoy. Tash is a fan of the forty thousand new subscribers... not so much the pressure to deliver the best web series ever. And when Unhappy Families is nominated for a Golden Tuba award, Tash’s cyber-flirtation with Thom Causer, a fellow award nominee, suddenly has the potential to become something IRL — if she can figure out how to tell said crush that she’s romantic asexual. Tash wants to enjoy her newfound fame, but will she lose her friends in her rise to the top?