Friday, July 31, 2009
Geektastic: Stories from the Nerd Herd Edited by Holly Black & Cecil Castellucci. Little, Brown. 2009. Review Copy provided by publisher.
The Plot: Short stories about geeks. All types of geeks: science fiction, role playing, even baton twirling.
The Good: What, exactly, is a geek?
In this collection of short stories, we meet all sorts of people who are interested in something to the point of obsession. Interested to the point where it seems to control their lives. Sometimes it's something that people readily call "geek" -- dressing up as a Klingon. Other times it's dinosaurs.
Whatever it is, you know what's nice? In this book, at least, the geeks are the norm. That isn't always the reality; though, thanks to the Internet bringing people with shared interests together, geeks are no longer isolated. Being a geek can be, well, geektastic. (Groan. Sorry.) Not everyone reading this will be a geek; not everyone takes that extra step from enjoying Star Wars to dressing like a Jedi. But anyone reading this will identify with falling in love; searching for a voice; learning about themselves and their place in the world. And, sometimes, will feel reassured in learning they are not alone in being passionate about something.
Who is the audience? With a variety of teen authors, and the main characters being teens, one answer is, well, teens. But I also recommend that this be cross marketed & shelved & displayed with science fiction. While the majority of the stories are realistic fiction, the majority of the stories are about people who love science fiction. How many times do your adult SF readers find themselves in a book?
From Publishers Weekly, all about the cover
© Elizabeth Burns of A Chair, A Fireplace & A Tea Cozy