Monday, September 14, 2009

Book Review and Giveaway: "Geektastic" ed. by Holly Black and Cecil Castellucci

Acclaimed authors Holly Black (Ironside)and Cecil Castellucci (Boy Proof) have united in geekdom to edit short stories from some of the best selling and most promising geeks in young adult literature: M.T. Anderson, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, John Green, Tracy Lynn, Cynthia and Greg Leitich Smith, David Levithan, Kelly Link, Barry Lyga, Wendy Mass, Garth Nix, Scott Westerfield, Lisa Yee, and Sara Zarr.

With illustrated interstitials from comic book artists Hope Larson and Bryan Lee O'Malley,
Geektastic covers all things geeky, from Klingons and Jedi Knights to fan fiction, theater geeks, and cosplayers. Whether you're a former, current, or future geek, or if you just want to get in touch with your inner geek, Geektastic will help you get your geek on!

I will not lie. I am a total geek. I have admitted this many times and I will not be ashamed. I am a Star Wars nerd, I watch Lord of the Rings marathons, I read the entire Harry Potter series at least once a year, I know everything about James Bond. The only geeky thing I'm not really into is Star Trek, but I will admit to watching the newest one and really enjoying it. That said, this book was PERFECT for me. It's pretty much the story of my life.

What I really love about this book is that I can totally relate to many of the stories. Even greater is the number of stories that feature girls as being totally into the geek culture. Too often the stereotype is that only nerdy guys who have no friends are geeks, but this book shows that girls, cool girls can be geeks and enjoy it. Of course there are also many stories that show how the "in crowd" shuns the geeks and the hardships that goes from feeling as you are a freak for the things you like. Many of the stories are painful to read because of the treatment received from others. However, there are still others that show it doesn't matter what others think as long as you enjoy what you do. I really loved the comic strips that were featured in between the stories. These were laugh out loud hilarious in their portrayal of the different types of geekdom. I wish there was a whole book on just these comics alone.

I did like some stories better than others. There were a few that I really just could not get into. I'm not sure if it was because I was unaware of the background of the story or because I was unfamiliar with the author's style of writing. Also some
stories featured a bit more sex and language than I would have liked to read. That being said, there's something for everyone in this book. Even if you have no idea what a Wookie is or can't speak a lick of Klingon, you'll still enjoy the multitude of talent from the authors who contributed to the book.

Geektastic edited by Holly Black and Cecil Castellucci is published by Little Brown Young Readers (2009)

I'm giving away 5 brand new copies of today's book! To enter you must leave a comment stating how you are a geek with your email address so I can contact you if you win. Entries without any geekiness will not be entered. I'll pick 5 names and announce the winners on Monday, September 21. Open to US and Canada entries. Good luck!




  1. I read medieval history books for fun, and I collect them too.

    blogbusinessworld [at] yahoo [dot] com

  2. Lacy (hellolacy)8:25 AM

    I am a geek because I collect Hello Kitty! :D Email is lacyckelly at gmail dot com. Thanks!

  3. Anonymous8:27 AM

    I once worked at something called the "Geekathon" (remodeling old, donated computers for needy schools) and then wore the t-shirt from it PROUDLY everywhere I could. Maybe that qualifies me. I too love Hello Kitty! I am "heatherandsolo" on PBS!

  4. Um, I watch LoTR marathons, Star Wars marathons, I'm into grammar, and I love following tech (especially Mac!)

    WordLily AT gmail DOT com

  5. I'm a huge geek! I can't watch a TV show without becoming obsessed with it (I spent my weekend watching a season of House; I watched six seasons of The West Wing in a month) and I've known who Cassandra Clare is for eight years - she wrote a very popular Harry Potter fanfic that everyone read.

    my PBS ID is donnatella :)

  6. I'm a geek because I celebrate Theodore Roosevelt's birthday every year (it's his 151st this October 27!) I also have a LOTR marathon for New Year's alternating with That's Entertainment on TCM. And while I'm not an band geek, I am an orch dork (which is cooler cos it rhymes).

    stephaniefleischer889 [at] gmail [dot] com

  7. I started reading SF around age 8 and was the only girl in that library section, EVER. I spent all my babysitting money on OMNI magazines (only older geeks will get that reference). I took calculus and chemistry for fun. (maryinhb)

  8. I am a geek simply because I spend so much time on the computer/Internet. I've learned a lot with the help of my computer geek sons. wandanamgreb(at)gmail(dot)com

  9. I am a geek because I love computers. I used to rebuild them and I build websites for fun. I love scifi and fantasy books, movies, and tv shows (Star Wars, Buffy, Supernatural, Harry Potter, etc). I loved Star Wars as a kid and used to read all the SW books that are out. I was a band nerd in high school. I took extra science classes in high school for fun and helped out in freshman science lab for extra credit.

    I get totally obsessed with pretty much every show I watch. I make my own screencaps and host a screencap website for The Office. I have seasons 1-3 pretty much memorized because I used to play Office hangman online with friends.

    I'm sure there is more, but that's all I am putting down now! My e-mail is vailfiregirl at yahoo dot com.

  10. I am a geek because I spend way to much time online and doing graphics work on the computer,I love my Paint Shop Pro.

  11. Most of my geek credentials are in my far past, and I need this books to help me reconnect.

    For now, I'll say that I LOVE living in Silicon Valley because of all the nerds here, that I really enjoy helping with math and science at my daughter's school, and one of my book club considers me the place to go for Science Fiction recommendations.

    i dash comment at deLeons dot com

  12. I think a better question would be how am I NOT like a geek. Holy cow, I'm supposed to pick one thing? about I notice and point out every single grammar and copyediting mistake in books I read?

    I'd love to win this.


  13. caviglia12:15 PM

    Well, I know every word of Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-Long Blog and read Latin for fun. I friended Marti Noxon on facebook. To cap it off: on the shelf to my left sits a large bust of Spiderman which sits next to my Buffy "Prophecy Girl" action figure. I once copyedited the poorly-written "will you steal from us" test during a job interview (i.e. Do you think it is okay to take small, unwatched items from your work if a) No one will notice b) Never! c) if I feel I'm being unfairly treated by management, etc. but, like, misspelled).

    caviglia on PBS & caviglia999 at gmail

  14. My husband and I are self-proclaimed geeks. Would love to read this. christinegordonmanley[at]yahoo[dot]ca

  15. I am a geek for many reasons, but the best reason might be that I regularly carry a coffee thermos that states, "Librarians have the best references."


  16. Hi, my name is Holly, I'm a geek... "Hi Holly"
    Sorry, lame (geekish) attempt at humor.
    I would love a chance to win one of these books. Thanks for sharing!

  17. We love you because of your geekiness! I am a total gadget geek - I want every gadget out there. milou2ster(at)

  18. I'm a geek too -- I never turn off my BlackBerry (and check it all the time), I own 3 MP3 players, I have an eReader, and I'm looking for more gadgets!!
    BFish (dot) Reads (at) gmail (dot) com

  19. I am a geek because I:

    - still have the Empire Strikes Back poster in my room at my parent's house
    - have a job that ensures I am online, geeking out, all day every day
    - know who Timothy Zahn is without Googling
    - was on the study floor in residence at university

    That last one should be sufficient :)


    fraser DOT kelton AT GMAIL

  20. Used to read books like Paulo Freire's Pedagogy of the Oppressed at parties!


  21. Anonymous5:06 PM

    I am a geek because I like to read tons of magazines, books,etc. I also can't live two days without Internet. :) I can tell you everything you need to know about every James Bond movie made and all the books ever written about him.

    Great giveaway.

    ConnieJ at FR

  22. According to my sister, I'm a geek because I keep our computer debugged, plus I read classics such as The Illiad and The Odyssey for fun! *gasp* :)

    hauntingorchid (at) aol (dot) com

  23. Oh, let me count how many ways I am wait...too many to count.

    --I have a book blog, does that count? I also belong to and and LOVE to write and talk about books with anyone
    --I go up to random people in the book store and recommend books to them
    --I was a band geek in high school
    --I watch silly teeny bopper shows (even though I'm now twice as old as the target audience).
    --I knit, but more than that, I LOVE to think about what I would knit if I had all the time and patience in the world. I plan projects and buy yarn. My yarn stash is probably larger than my book stash. :-)

    Thanks for hosting the giveaway! Enjoyed checking your blog out as well.


  24. I really want to read this!! Sounds great and perfect for me. i'm definitely a geek. I LOVE harry potter and have tons of memorbilia saved. I would rather buy books than clothes. I read fan fiction and love it. I used to even write some fan fiction. I like foreign films and other weird/indie movies like Running for Scissors and Life as a House. I love to read...which you know, is geeky to some.

    lauren51990 AT aol DOT com

  25. How am I a geek? Let me count the ways!

    I, too, watch Lord of the Rings marathons and also Harry Potter marathons. I re-read Lord of the Rings every few years. My idea of a good time is to do a group reading of one of Shakespeare's plays, then host a viewing of a film version with a themed menu. I like to point out that a tomato is a fruit, not a vegetable. I enjoyed memorizing the Krebs cycle. I studied Latin for fun. And I'm waiting for the Doctor to show up in his TARDIS one of these days and whisk me away.

    Totally a geek.

    My e-mail address is dbrannon[at]gmail[dot]com.


  26. Um...I'm trying to figure out what makes me NOT a geek? LOL...I have a huge collection of comic books, people call me every time they can't figure out the answer to a music or book related question and my TBR pile is well over 300...does that work? LOL..Anyway, this book sounds awesome!!! I'd love to check it out. My email address is chrisa511(at)gmail(dot)com. Thanks!

  27. Haha ... I am a geek because my dream is to be a science librarian. I love Douglas Adams and Terry Pratchett. I watch the bad movies on the SciFi channel.
    But probably my worst geek move is that I correct people that tell their kids the wrong information about animals at the zoo.

    I hope I'm geeky enough to win!

    webereading AT gmail dot com

  28. I am still a geek because I still love my teddy bears!

    lizzi0915 at aol dot com

  29. Anonymous10:56 AM

    I am a geek because I prefer to have conversations in French or sign language. And because I'd love to read this book!

    thalya2780 [at] hotmail [dot] com

  30. I am a geek because I'm an adult and love dolls!

  31. How am I a geek? Oh I hope you have time on your hands! Lol.

    First of all I'm overly passionate about books. I have various differnt ways to organize them. I'm anal about how they're handled by others, and love to talk non-stop about books with friends.

    I'm also a HUGE buffy/harry potter/LOTR/Ghostbusters..... the list goes on, geek. I plan on purchasing, making costumes and props to be able to participate in cosplay, fan expos, or just hanging out with friends and wearing costumes from Star Trek and Power Rangers (there's pictures to prove this). All in all, I'm just one big ubber geek!

    my email is dobson[dot]j[dot]m[at] gmail[dot]com (

    Thanks... the first step is admitting your a geek! Next step,... becoming even more geeky?

  32. I am a geek! My brother says I am, so I guess that counts.

    I've traded the sterotypical shoe buying addiction to that of buying and aquiring books. I'm reading Sherlock Holmes now, for fun...

    I think that's pretty geeky. =) I used to be a Pokemon geek. I guess I have some catching up to do. I'd love to read this book!

    Thanks for hosting this giveaway. =)

    lindanmc (at)

  33. Anonymous5:48 PM

    Okay, you got me, please count me in on this
    great giveaway, I am a new email subscriber.

    jsrogers at shaw dot ca

  34. I am a geek of many colors--a scrabble geek (I play in official tournaments), a math geek (I sometimes do math for fun), a video game geek (yay for old-school RPGs)...the list goes on.
    I also married a geek!

    bryce_z at

  35. I am a geek because not only do I have all 600+ of my books alphabetized by title, but I keep lists of them in order, a list of the books I've read in ABC order, and a list of when I read them! I'm also a geek because I'd rather stay home on a Friday night, curled up next to my boyfriend, reading a book, than going out!

    purplg8r (on FR)

  36. I majored in math, and I've saved all my textbooks - not so much because I think I'll actually need them again (although that's a possibility, I guess) as because I like to do problems from them sometimes.

    ikkinlala AT yahoo DOT ca

  37. This book looks fantastic!

    I've been a geek a long, long time....was an editor for my high school newspaper, was online back when blogs were called Bullitan Boards and you had to call their number directly to connect instead of just logging online, have been a sci fi/fantasy fan since I was 13, and was a huge Space: 1999 fan! Do I qualify? :D

  38. I live in a Mad Science theme dorm. We do math on chalkboards that we dragged up to the 2nd floor, make ice cream and super conductors with liquid nitrogen, and play D&D for fun. 'Nuff said!


  39. Would love to get this one

    What a great giveaway...thanks!

    kdhaney (AT) gmail ((DOT)) com

  40. I'm a geek because I would rather stay home and read or play nintendo than go out on the weekend
    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

  41. I am a geek because I help my friends build Halo armor for conventions. No joke it is probably the coolest thing in the world. And super hard to do. Oh, and I am a geek because I go to Comic-Con, and I already reserved my ticket for next year.


  42. I actually faked needing glasses as a kid because I thought glasses were cool (if that's not geeky, I don't know what is!)

    melacan at hotmail dot com

  43. Sounds very interesting! I really enjoy watching the old Star Trek show, so hopefully that makes me enough of a geek to enter. LOL

    writer_weaver at yahoo dot com

  44. I'm a huge Geek!! Reading Comics, watching sci-fi!! And Lord of the Rings. Yep. Certified geek for sure!!

    stoland at ameritech dot net

  45. I am a geek because my three favorite past times are reading, being online and doing jigsaw puzzles.

  46. I am a geek because I love to read or be on the computer. I would rather do one of those two things than go anywhere. Especially on Friday and Saturday night. lol! Thanks!

    tiffanys819 at gmail dot com

  47. I would LOVE to win this!!
    Thankyou!! :D:D:D
    I am a greek, and a VERY crazy greek. That is what i am.

  48. I secretly watch old episodes of Dawsons Creek. My husband says thats as geeky as it gets!


  49. I have been raised a geek! I was a baby geek watching Star Trek on Sunday mornings with my dad, then TNG and the others with the family. I recently went to Dragon*Con and geeked out over the books, the costumes, the art, the authors, etc.! I bathe in eau de Geek.


  50. I am a geek because I'm a librarian, gamer, and bookaholic. And I drool over authors and books more than movie stars and models. I can't live without a book in my bag and my laptop at my side.

    I also used to love playing D&D and my fiance is a huge gamer - computer and roleplaying. :)

  51. Anonymous12:54 PM

    Hi Yes I fit into the geek realm. Yes I am a Star Wars, Star Trek, Lord of the Rings fan. I have worn glasses since 9. I usually read at least two books and numerous magazines every week. I usually see two movies at the theatre every week. I usually spend two or more hours on the computer every day when I'm not working. In August I went to a regional Animethon, almost went to the August Vegas Star Trek convention(had to bail last minute due to $ issues).
    Soo yes yes please I would loove to read this. Cheers. polo-puppy-fluffy AT hotmail *dot* com

  52. Anonymous1:08 PM

    I'm a geek because I went to chemistry camp in high school

  53. This book sounds like such a great read! I'm a bit geeky about a lot of things,
    [1] I'm a total book-nerd obviously.
    [2] I keep my comic books in those plastic sleeves with cardboard inserts.
    [3] I've got a zombie apocalypse safety plan all sorted out.
    [4] Horror movies are my life and I've gotten into several hours-long debates about the pros and cons of certain horror movie villains.
    [5] My house is filled with fully articulated horror/pop culture action figures (okay yes may be called toys)
    [6] I'm working on my library sciences degree (cataloguing is actually both anal and fun!)


  54. I'm a geek because I have countless Nintendo Power magazines stacked up nicely in the corner of the room (I love looking at them) and I used to be afraid that ninjas would burst through my window in the middle of the night. I think this just makes me plain strange, but I also used to have a "special" sleeping position to prevent bugs and spiders from getting inside my body.
    I would love to read this book, thank you. :)

  55. I'm a geek for many reasons... I am completely obsessed with YA science fiction and fantasy. I love steampunk. I'm one of those people who knows a lot of obscure facts. I'm into computers. A lot. I attempt to write books, especially during National Novel Writing Month. I draw dozens of doodles of current and former characters in these books. I love sci-fi tv shows, and my favorite channel is the Syfy channel. My favorite show is Stargate Atlantis. I read some fanfiction. I'm fascinated by mysterious historical events (like the Tunguska Event), lost civilizations, and theoretical physics. Then I use my research in my writing. In the past, I've gotten away with submitting comics I've drawn for a history project and a science project in school. Both got A's. I dressed up as a character from one of my books for Halloween last year with a friend who did the same (a character from her book.) I plan to do this again this Halloween. I'd say that I qualify as a geek.

    paradoxrevealed (at) aim (dot) com

  56. I'm a geek because I'd rather stay home and read than go out with my friends.


  57. I am a geek because I love to read all kinds of things and spend a lot of time on my computer. I like to learn about things in a wide variety of subjects. I would really like to win this book. Thanks for the chance.