Chaotic Good

Chaotic GoodChaotic Good
By Whitney Gardner
Source Received from the publisher
Published by Knopf on March 13, 2018

Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

four-stars

Cover image and synopsis from Goodreads:

Cameron’s cosplay–dressing like a fictional character–is finally starting to earn her attention–attention she hopes to use to get into the CalTech costume department for college. But when she wins a major competition, she inadvertently sets off a firestorm of angry comments from male fans.

When Cameron’s family moves the summer before her senior year, she hopes to complete her costume portfolio in peace and quiet away from the abuse. Unfortunately, the only comic shop in town–her main destination for character reference–is staffed by a dudebro owner who challenges every woman who comes into the shop.

At her twin brother’s suggestion, Cameron borrows a set of his clothes and uses her costuming expertise to waltz into the shop as Boy Cameron, where she’s shocked at how easily she’s accepted into the nerd inner sanctum. Soon, Cameron finds herself drafted into a D&D campaign alongside the jerky shop-owner Brody, friendly (almost flirtatiously so) clerk Wyatt, handsome Lincoln, and her bro Cooper, dragged along for good measure.

But as her “secret identity” gets more and more entrenched, Cameron’s portfolio falls by the wayside–and her feelings for Lincoln threaten to make a complicated situation even more precarious.

I love stories about fandom and geekdom, and Chaotic Good is a book I’d been looking forward to since I first heard of it. This turned out to be a very fun, cute read, although it was hard at times to read the hateful ‘fake geek girl’ messages that Cameron received unjustly. I get so ragey about that stuff and I was so mad on Cameron’s behalf any time she had to experience that.

All of the cosplay stuff was so fun to read about! I also really liked reading about Cameron playing Dungeons and Dragons. I’ve only briefly played but I love the idea of it. I love RPGs (but games where you actually have to play with other people disturb my introverted nature) and I loved reading about Cameron and her brother creating their characters and playing the game. There were even a few pages of illustrations of the campaign, which was a pleasant surprise.

I do wish that a few plotlines had been explored a little more (Potentially slightly spoilery. Highlight to read: I wanted to know more about Lincoln; I felt like the resolution at the end, particularly with Why and Brody and her application, was a little rushed), but overall this was a really delightful read. Recommended!

Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for sending me this finished copy! Pick up a copy for yourself:

Chapters-Indigo

The Book Depository

Amazon Canada

four-stars

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