Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Review: Geektastic ed. by Holly Black & Cecil Castellucci

So last week I started reading the much anticipated Pride and Prejudice and Zombies...after four days of reading I'm only half way through. Last night I knew I was going to be out late being supremely geeky, and while that geekiness did involve zombies, it was also going to involve a late-night subway ride home, which necessitated more engaging reading material.

Enter Geektastic: Stories from the Nerd Herd, edited by Holly Black and Cecil Castellucci and featuring stories from all sorts of YA authors, who proudly proclaim their geekery in the author bios at the end of each story.

Considering my own late night geekiness involved table top role playing where zombies had taken over New York City, I felt it was a delightfully appropriate choice. I thoroughly entertained my husband and his friends since I was reading while my husband taught them role playing basics, because I kept cracking up.

The stories here range from the absurdity of a Klingon warrior and Jedi Knight ending up in bed together at Comic Con or a cheerleader trying to learn the finer points of geekdom for the sake of her football playing boyfriend, to awkward and tender stories of geeks finding their first love or their first heartbreak. Every kind of geek is represented: LARPers, theatre geeks, astronomy nerds, band geeks, dino geeks - even a pair of young Rocky Horror aficionados. The strongest stories - in my opinion - probably bookend the book, but then again the first two and the last story touched upon some of my nerdier habits, so of course I was going to be drawn to them.

Anyone who has ever felt so passionate about something that they're seen as weird - or maybe just knows someone who is that passionate - needs to read this book. Also, I got a great kick out of seeing which authors were what sorts of geeks (Barry Lyga has hurt me deeply by claiming that being a Trekker is beneath his geek standards - somewhere there are pictures of me dressed as a Klingon for Halloween. Twice, actually, since once I was B'Elanna Torres and then another year I was a full-fledged Klingon warrior complete with cardboard-and-tin-foil bat'leth).

'Fess up readers - what's your geeky pleasure?
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