Title: Eliza and Her Monsters
Author: Francesca Zappia
Publisher: HarperCollins (May 2017)
In the real world, Eliza Mirk is shy, weird, and friendless. Online, she’s LadyConstellation, the anonymous creator of the wildly popular webcomic Monstrous Sea. Eliza can’t imagine enjoying the real world as much as she loves the online one, and she has no desire to try.
Then Wallace Warland, Monstrous Sea’s biggest fanfiction writer, transfers to her school. Wallace thinks Eliza is just another fan, and as he draws her out of her shell, she begins to wonder if a life offline might be worthwhile.
But when Eliza’s secret is accidentally shared with the world, everything she’s built—her story, her relationship with Wallace, and even her sanity—begins to fall apart.
This is probably going to be one of the best books I will read this year. Hands down. I loved absolutely everything about this.
I got a digital copy of this on the Kindle as a birthday present to myself and read it in close to one sitting. I do regret making the choice to get this particular book on the Kindle simply because the book is peppered with illustrations I never got to fully appreciate. All this means is I will be getting a physical copy at some point!
Eliza, the protagonist in this story, is a weird, socially awkward teen who just happens to run a hugely famous webcomic called Monstrous Sea. She keeps this secret to herself because the comic has a huge following and she prefers not having her real-life persona linked to that of LadyConstellation, her online moniker.
Wallace is the new guy in school. Huge. Jock. And a massive Monstrous Sea fan.
You know where this is going, right?
The book focuses on Eliza and Wallace as they get to know each other and also deal with their own personal struggles. It sounds like a run-of-the-mill contemporary, but I can assure you that this book is anything but that.
I have not been so invested a cast of characters in a long time. I laughed with them and wanted to cry for them. I wanted to be their friends and geek out with them.
I also saw part of myself in Eliza and could seriously relate to a lot of her quirks.
This book also highlights the struggles of being the creator of a fandom and the pressures that fans place on this person to deliver and meet expectations. I think this is becoming more and more of a big deal because we sometimes forget that the person at the other end of the keyboard is just that: a person! I mean, look at the grief authors like JK Rowling and Stephenie Meyer went through.
But, I digress. :)
This is an awesome book. I cannot fault a single thing with it.
Geeks. Fandoms. Realistic teens. If you loved Fangirl, you will love this. It's better.