A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Behind-the-scenes look at the lives of movie stars, including PR stunts, paparazzi, career decisions, and harassment. Discussion of internet trolls and cyberbullying. Information on how big conventions work.
Appreciate what you have. You don't have be alone with your feelings; others in your life care and want to help you. Don't assume the worst of other people. Be yourself.
Positive Role Models
Imogen is a sweet kid who loves her family. Jessica is a self-centered star, but she needs that emotional armor in a tough show-business career. At heart she's a smart, caring person. Most of the people close to Imogen and Jessica are kind, caring, there to help whenever needed. Characters are diverse in terms of race, heritage, sexual orientation. Both main characters are White.
Violence & Scariness
Some pushing and a karate grab. Man gets physically thrown out of a meet-and-greet event. Woman gets groped. Verbal sexual harassment and internet bullying.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Romantic desire figures heavily into the plot. Lots of talk about looks, hotness, and sexiness. Longing descriptions of other characters. Some kissing.
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"God," "crap," "dumbass," "Jesus," "butt," "douche," "bulls--t," "fart," "pissed," "s--t," "hell," "d--kwad," "a--hole," "bats--t," "d--k." "Frakking" used as substitute for "f--king."
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Products & Purchases
Story is centered around a sci-fi and comic convention similar to Comic-Con, with many film, comic, television, and game references scattered throughout the book. Other media and brands mentioned include YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Skype, FaceTime, Starbucks, Marriott, TMZ, Prada, FunkoPop, and Converse.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Party with drinking, but a few characters choose not to drink, and no one gets drunk.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Princess and the Fangirl by Ashley Poston (Geekerella) is an updated take on Mark Twain's The Prince and Pauper. In Poston's version, the main characters are Jessica Stone, the female lead of the hit sci-fi movie Starfield, and Imogen Lovelace, a high school girl who is a serious fan of the movie and the old TV show it's based on. Jessica wants out of her role as Princess Amara in the upcoming sequel. Imogen, on the other hand, has launched a "Save Amara" campaign, hoping to convince the movie studio to keep the character. When the look-alikes bump into each other at the ExcelsiCon convention, Imogen is mistaken for Jessica, which leads to the two intentionally switching places to solve a mystery. Swearing is infrequent ("s--t," "a--hole," "frakking" instead of "f--king"). There's one party with alcohol, but no one gets drunk, and there's no smoking or drugs. Romance figures largely in the plot. Characters discuss the hotness and desirability of other characters. There's some straight and same-sex kissing. A character comes out as gay. Though this is called "A Geekerella Fairy Tale," with characters and some plot points from Geekerella mentioned, it isn't necessary to have read that book to understand this one.
Is It Any Good?
This fairy tale update is cute and fun but ultimately feels hollow. The Princess and the Fangirl is similar in many ways to Ashley Poston's previous book, Geekerella, but it lacks the endearing quirk and charm. The characters are one-dimensional and hard to get invested in. For a story that happens over a weekend, the plot moves surprisingly slowly. The romances in the book are sweet and charming, though, and the reader can't help but root for Jessica and Imogen to work things out with their crushes.
The story is best when it is shines a spotlight on the good and bad sides of intense fandoms. A show with a devoted following can create a wonderful community where people can bond and share what inspires them. On the flip side are fans who feel they are owed certain casting decisions or show outcomes and decide to stalk, bully, and harass stars. Poston shows the ways in which female stars especially are victims of internet trolls and the toll the abuse can take on victims. Readers who enjoy light, escapist romance will enjoy this story, while readers who want deeper character development might find it lacking.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.