Publisher - Swoon Reads
Release Date - June 7th, 2016
Pre-Order - Amazon / B&N
College freshman Liv is more than just a fangirl: The Starveil movies are her life… So, when her favorite character, Captain Matt Spartan, is killed off at the end of the last movie, Liv Just. Can’t. Deal.
Tired of sitting in her room sobbing, Liv decides to launch an online campaign to bring her beloved hero back to life. With the help of her best friend, Xander, actor and steampunk cosplayer extraordinaire, she creates #SpartanSurvived, a campaign to ignite the fandom. But as her online life succeeds beyond her wildest dreams, Liv is forced to balance that with the pressures of school, her mother’s disapproval, and her (mostly nonexistent and entirely traumatic) romantic life. A trip to DragonCon with Xander might be exactly what she needs to figure out what she really wants.
I am a fangirl! And I for sure am loud and proud about it. It is part of how I identify myself and because of that, I was very excited about reading this book about another fangirl, because I think that despite differences in fandoms, we fangirls are soulsisters because we know THE PAIN that can come from being a fangirl. For me, that pain has come from books (Harry Potter), from television & films (I WILL NEVER GET OVER THE WAY MARK AND LEXIE'S STORY ENDED IN Grey's Anatomy or the ending of Serenity) and sports (hockey is glorious, but also oh, so painful). For Liv, the fangirl pain comes from The Starveil movie and the completely unexpected death of her favorite character Captain Matt Spartan.
Liv is such a likable character that I would it very easy to identify with. She is a freshman in college, seems quite unsure of what she wants to do with her life (or thinks that what she really wants to do is not possible) and seems to be more like herself when she is engaging in online communication rather than in actual social situations. First and foremost, she is a fangirl and she knows that not many people in her "real life" will know how life as a fangirl can be like. Rather than spending time focused on studying, Liv is often occupied in activities of the fandom, especially after her favorite character is killed off. Is there something she can do to help other fangirls in need? Is there something she can do to help herself?
Liv is friends with Xander, a guy who treats every day as a good day for cosplay. Xander dresses like Lord Byron, carries a pocket watch with on day to day basis, and is capable of understanding Liv, even though he himself isn't interested in the Starveil movies. When Xander invites Liv to go along with him to DragonCon, Liv hesitates at first. But when her #SpartanSurvived campaign starts to make waves, she decides that she simply has to be a part of the much expected Starveil panel that will take place at the convention.
The novel is divided into two parts - life before the convention and life during the convention. I found both parts interesting and I think the build-up for the Con itself was done well. The principal characters are interesting and I really enjoyed reading about the relationship between Liv and Xander. I would say the book is more about Liv's growth rather than about romance, but there definitely are some swoonworthy moments here too. Xander is absolutely charming - kind of weird, but in this case, weird is good!
The only complaint I have about this book is all the unnecessary drama Liv has with her mother. Her mother adds an obstacle to her fangirl lifestyle, but I think the novel could have done without, because the whole dynamic just doesn't feel like it has been developed enough. But that is just a really minor complaint and in general it did not take much away from my overall enjoyment of this novel. Stone writes well and with an occasional flair of humor, and I think in general All the Feels was the perfect kind of quick, sweet contemporary romance that I like to indulge in from time to time.
Highly recommended to all you fangirls (and fanboys) out there!