3.17.2015

Book Rhi-view: The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy: A Handbook for Girl Geeks by Sam Maggs

The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy: A Handbook for Girl Geeks by Sam Maggs

Non-fiction, Geek, Social Issues
Release Date: May 12, 2015
Ebook/Print (208 pages, QUIRK BOOKS)
Fanfic, cosplay, cons, books, memes, podcasts, vlogs, OTPs and RPGs and MMOs and more—it’s never been a better time to be a girl geek. The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy is the ultimate handbook for ladies living the nerdy life, a fun and feminist take on the often male-dominated world of geekdom. With delightful illustrations and an unabashed love for all the in(ternet)s and outs of geek culture, this book is packed with tips, playthroughs, and cheat codes, including:
• How to make nerdy friends
• How to rock awesome cosplay
• How to write fanfic with feels
• How to defeat Internet trolls
• How to attend your first con
And more! Plus, insightful interviews with fangirl faves, like Jane Espenson, Erin Morgenstern, Kate Beaton, Ashley Eckstein, Laura Vandervoort, Beth Revis, Kate Leth, and many others.

Level up your lady geek street cred! (5 stars)

For far too long the word 'fangirl' has been used as a derogatory term for girls and women who are unabashedly okay with owning their geekness. (Heck, even some of the interviewed women in this book seem to shy away from it). I think it's time to drop the stigma and this book is a great place to start getting over that little speed bump. If you've ever had a hard time letting your inner fangirl flag fly high, let The Fangirl's Guide to the Galaxy help you find your outlet.

Having been an avid reader of The Mary Sue for years now I was aware of Sam Maggs and I'm pretty sure I had heard she had a book coming out. Even though I've considered myself a geek for more than a couple of decades now the past several years have been both really awesome and really terrible for lady nerds. Maggs managed to remind me that being both female and a geek doesn't have to be such a minefield. With sections on everything from basics of cosplay and conventions to fanfic and feminism this is the perfect primer for women and girls who haven't quite figured out where to express their passion for all things fandom.

I had a squee moment when I saw play-by-post RPGs mentioned in the making nerdy friends section because I used to run forums for this back in my 20's. The friends I made in those roleplaying forums are still part of my life 10+ years later. I was also thrilled to several writers and actresses that I've admired included in the interviews and had a total fangasm when I saw Espionage Cosmetics mentioned in the Resources section (#NerdMakeup is a thing).

I found the section on feminism to be particularly enjoyable because my nerdy interests go very hand-in-hand with my belief in gender equality. There is an excellent section focused on awesome female characters in everything from comic books (hello, Rat Queens!) and games to books (OMG Libba Bray's Beauty Queens gets a nod!) to visual media (can't second the mention of Moon from Hero enough).

Shame on me for having read other reviews a little before I wrote mine but I'm stumped as to why so many think the audience for the book isn't clear. The audience is female and geeky, all ages included. Will this guide be for everyone? Definitely not. If you're an internet troll, think 'feminist' is a bad word, or think that cosplay is consent then you should stay far away from this book. I would have loved this as much ten years ago as I did reading it now in my thirties. I think it would be just as welcome given to a teenager as someone my age who hasn't hit a con yet. Thanks to this book I am officially intimidated by cons. lol

If you've ever thought about taking your fangirling to the next level with writing fanfiction, cosplaying, attending a convention, or even just putting on some mental chain mail to brave the local comic shop I think this is a fun place to find out how to get started. Even if all you want to do is find out the best place to shop for cosplay wigs, a site to learn how to code or what the heck a SuperWhoLockian is Maggs has ya covered. If you're a fangirl of any level or you know one buy this book!



Notes: ARC received via Amazon Vine.

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