Book reviews Retellings Romance

Bookish And the Beast by Ashley Poston

About the Book: Bookish and the Beast

In the third book in Ashley Poston’s Once Upon a Con series, Beauty and the Beast is retold in the beloved Starfield universe.

Rosie Thorne is feeling stuck—on her college application essays, in her small town, and on that mysterious General Sond cosplayer she met at ExcelsiCon. Most of all, she’s stuck in her grief over her mother’s death. Her only solace was her late mother’s library of rare Starfield novels, but even that disappeared when they sold it to pay off hospital bills.

On the other hand, Vance Reigns has been Hollywood royalty for as long as he can remember—with all the privilege and scrutiny that entails. When a tabloid scandal catches up to him, he’s forced to hide out somewhere the paparazzi would never expect to find him: Small Town USA. At least there’s a library in the house. Too bad he doesn’t read.

When Rosie and Vance’s paths collide and a rare book is accidentally destroyed, Rosie finds herself working to repay the debt. And while most Starfield superfans would jump at the chance to work in close proximity to the Vance Reigns, Rosie has discovered something about Vance: he’s a jerk, and she can’t stand him. The feeling is mutual.

But as Vance and Rosie begrudgingly get to know each other, their careful masks come off—and they may just find that there’s more risk in shutting each other out than in opening their hearts. 

So basically while everything from the friendship, sub characters, parental relationship, the whole ExcelsiCon universe, is all amazing, it failed at one major element that was the most important.

Read on for our review of the book

Our Review of Bookish and the Beast

I had loved and completely drowned myself in the candy floss romance of Geekrella. I had adored and cherished the cuteness of that book. The best part about Geekrella was the romance. It was gradual, cute and not forced upon. So naturally I didn’t had to think twice about picking this book especially when I learned that it was a take on beauty and beast. ( in case I haven’t mentioned before, I m a total sucker for beauty and beast novels) So after reading Bookish and beast, I want to say….. I want my money back. 

This is nothing like the Geekrella flavour that I hoped for. It also suddenly makes me happy that I didn’t pick up the second book. Oh yeah that is an actual plus point that each book in this universe can be read as a standalone. Although the characters from all the previous books do make a recurring appearance and there are reference to the incidents to the previous books but you can definitely still manage to get away without reading the prequels

If in case you want to see the true potential of the series, I would say try Geekrella which was a Cinderella retake. Its a perfect unicorns and candy floss book that will cheer your mood. The author has used or at least tried to use all the elements that she managed to use and score in the first book. Don’t know why but it doesn’t work for this one. Perhaps because there was a rush to finish the book? Or an immense pressure to follow up on the success of the previous ones?

Ok without going in circles, let me get into why I couldn’t exactly fall for this book. The core purpose and aspect of the series is its romance. So what is the point of the book when the basic core is underdeveloped. Everything else in the book is developed. The characters and their backgrounds, the events that bring the characters together. Every other events and story developments has a clear purpose and path, except the romance. Its like the author was working towards another track and suddenly was forced to develop the romance. It doesn’t work that way, unfortunately.

There is basically one scene where the characters are actually together and having kind of a moment. That ideally should have been the first step towards the romance track in the book but the author cashes everything in that moment , a tiny scene where the characters are locked outside of the house and is waiting out the rain. The whole romance of the book is trying hard to make us all believe that this is enough to magically fulfil the romance quotient for the entire book.

So basically while everything from the friendship, sub characters, parental relationship, the whole ExcelsiCon universe, is all amazing, it failed at one major element that was the most important. The romance or at least the chemistry between the lead characters and I thought that the book was all about romance… 


If you hate romance then this is your book because it got none or at least you get more reason to hate it. Ok that was actually pretty harsh. Sorry about that. Basically if you have been a fan of the series for its romance then don’t come looking for that in here but if you had love the whole ExcelsiCon universe, then yes go for it. The book has everything else working in it except for the romance.

Squirrel Rating

Catch our review of Geekerella on the goodreads page

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