Olivia Dade bursts onto the scene in this delightfully fun romantic comedy set in the world of fanfiction, in which a devoted fan goes on an unexpected date with her celebrity crush, who’s secretly posting fanfiction of his own.
Marcus Caster-Rupp has a secret. While the world knows him as Aeneas, the star of the biggest show on TV, Gods of the Gates, he’s known to fanfiction readers as Book!AeneasWouldNever, an anonymous and popular poster. Marcus is able to get out his own frustrations with his character through his stories, especially the ones that feature the internet’s favorite couple to ship, Aeneas and Lavinia. But if anyone ever found out about his online persona, he’d be fired. Immediately.
April Whittier has secrets of her own. A hardcore Lavinia fan, she’s hidden her fanfiction and cosplay hobby from her “real life” for years—but not anymore. When she decides to post her latest Lavinia creation on Twitter, her photo goes viral. Trolls and supporters alike are commenting on her plus-size take, but when Marcus, one half of her OTP, sees her pic and asks her out on a date to spite her critics, she realizes life is really stranger than fanfiction.
Even though their first date is a disaster, Marcus quickly realizes that he wants much more from April than a one-time publicity stunt. And when he discovers she’s actually Unapologetic Lavinia Stan, his closest fandom friend, he has one more huge secret to hide from her.
With love and Marcus’s career on the line, can the two of them stop hiding once and for all, or will a match made in fandom end up prematurely cancelled? They are each other’s fiercest love, greatest danger, and only hope.
A darling rom-com! Full of heart, fantastic writing and commentary on…some show… that disappointed us all… I loved living vicariously through April. Marcus was also a great complicated character that lived covered in various layers, which April had to peel off one by one. Marcus on the other hand had to very carefully navigate the land mines that was April’s emotional state. But together they manage to understand each other and support each other through many misunderstandings (because emotions are HARD and feeling vulnerable is HARDER).
My April is Emma Hunton:
I loved how from the beginning April decided to just be her best self and F*off what everybody else might think about it. Including internet trolls. April doesn’t stop there however, she also goes on to address fat shaming within her own online fan fic community, letting those she loves and has come to care how sometimes they can hurt her feelings without even knowing. April is super brave, cause the hardest thing is to face those you love and telling them how you really feel about their maybe not even meant to be hurtful comments.
Once she posts her picture online cosplaying one of her favorite characters in the show “Gods of the Gate” she gets a ton of support, but also a ton of backlash because of course internet trolls. Seeing this backlash, and not agreeing with it at all, Marcus, the main star of the show, asks her out on a date. While they are both clear on what the date means for each of them before the date itself, once they meet all bets are off as they find in each other refuge, understanding, and attraction.
My Marcus is either…
Marcus literally lives within a character. He spends his days playing the character of Marcus Caster-Rupp, a pretty dumb movie star, while in reality Marcus is anything but. Feeling like he needs to hide his real self, he only manages to connect via his online community in which he posts fan fics about his show (trying to somehow fix the horrible scripts he keeps getting from the show runners). He also finds refuge in his online friend, Unapologetic Lavinia Stan. They have never met in real life, because if the showrunners were to find out Marcus is writing fan fic about the show they could fire him or sue him, or both. So you can just imagine how shocked he was to find out April is his best friend, only he is unable to tell her unless he is wiling to put his entire career on the line.
I loved the incorporation of the “geek” life. Cosplaying, writing fan fic, attending cons! It is all in there. Also the commentary on
Game of Thrones Gods of the Gate was spot on and made me laugh quite often. Poor actors in the shows who can’t exactly say what they really think without losing their careers. I am hoping we are getting a “sequel” involving Alex, because that story line didn’t quite finish in this book as after he leaves we don’t really get a conclusion to his issues. I am all in for Alex and his Cupid pegging fan fics 🤣 They made me lol, and his character brought so much sunshine to all the angst. So ready for his book if it is on the works.
This was a great rom com with complicated characters, with seriously sad backgrounds, but has an empowering message. This book actually made me look at my own biases when it comes to my own body, how we have been “programmed” to think one way by our culture, and I just love that it is out there in the world! Representation is truly important 🖤 can’t wait to see what else this author comes out with.
PS; I was provided a review copy in exchange for an honest review. Thanks go to the publisher!