Sunday, December 18, 2016

Book Review: "The Geek's Guide to Unrequited Love" by Sarvenaz Tash

It had been a long time since I'd read a (reasonably) non-angsty YA book, and this one absolutely hit the spot! Sweet, fun, full of pop culture and sci-fi gems, it reminded me a little bit of Eleanor & Park but it had a charm all its own.

"Because maybe if the gesture is grand enough, and perfect enough, it won't be unrequited at all and I, Graham William Posner—lanky, pale, glasses, and with a penchant for fantasy worlds—will actually get the girl.

Graham can barely remember a time when his best friend Roxana wasn't a fixture in his life. In fact, he probably only has about five years of memories without her in them. They have watched the same movies over and over again, read the same books and graphic novels, play the same games, and they even write their own graphic series (Graham writes, Roxana draws)—The Misfits of Mage High.

But lately things are changing. Roxana is all Graham can think about—but in a romantic way. He doesn't just want to talk to her, or write with her—he wants to kiss her. He has started a list called "Things Roxana Loves," and he's watched enough 80s movies to know he needs to find the perfect moment to tell her how he feels. He thinks he has found it, when they find out that Robert Zinc, the reclusive creator of their favorite series of all time, The Chronicles of Althena, will be doing a Q&A session at New York Comic Con. All Graham needs to do is get them into that session, and then he'll get the girl, right?

What could go wrong?

Well, needless to say, the path to true love never runs smoothly. Graham finds himself battling more than his share of obstacles in his plans for giving Roxana the perfect weekend. The more things go wrong, the more he considers taking grander steps to get his message across. But what if Roxy doesn't feel the same way about him? Is he willing to risk their friendship for the possibility of taking it to the next step? Can they shake the good-looking British stud who has attached himself to Roxy? And will they ever get to see Robert Zinc before he goes into hiding again?

"When you live for stories, when you spend so much of your time immersed in careful constructs of three and five acts, it sometimes feels like you're just stumbling through the rest of life, trying to divine meaningful narrative threads from the chaos."

Sarvenaz Tash does such a great job with The Geek's Guide to Unrequited Love. It charmed me from the very first sentence, and never let up. We've seen scenarios like these over and over in books, movies, television shows, yet that didn't diminish what made the book so enjoyable. These are familiar but tremendously winning characters, and even when they're sullen because they're not getting their way, you root for them.

There's so much going on in this book in such a short time, it would be fun to see this as a movie. It would also be fun to see Tash develop The Chronicles of Althena into something, because that series sounds fascinating! All in all, though, I really, really liked this. It may not be for everyone, but if my description appeals to you, the book is sure to do more! Can't wait to see what Tash has in store next!!

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