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Geektastic: Stories from the Nerd Herd Hardcover – August 1, 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 9 Up—From Trekkers to science geeks, Buffy fanatics to Dungeon Masters, nerds of all persuasions are sure to find themselves in the pages of this anthology. It contains fun reads such as Black and Castellucci's "Once You're a Jedi, You're a Jedi All the Way" in which a Klingon wakes with a Jedi in her hotel room while at a sci-fi convention, and Tracy Lynn's "One of Us," in which a cheerleader enlists the school nerds to teach her the basics of geekdom so she can impress her Trekker boyfriend. The collection also includes more profound fare such as Kelly Link's moving and masterful "Secret Identity" about a 15-year-old girl who has pretended to be her 32-year-old sister on an online RPG. She must face the consequences of her lies when she arranges to meet the man with whom she has developed a relationship. Also included are stories by YA lit greats such as John Green, Libba Bray, Scott Westerfeld, and M. T. Anderson. Each story is followed by a comic-book-style illustration offering information or advice such as "What Your Instrument Says About You" and "How to Look Cool and Not Drool in Front of Your Favorite Author." Simultaneously addressing the isolation and loneliness that geeks can feel as well as the sense of camaraderie and community that can be found when one embraces a world or ideology in which he or she can completely invest, Geektastic is a completely dorky and utterly worthwhile read.—Heather M. Campbell, formerly at Philip S. Miller Library, Castle Rock, CO
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Holly Black is the bestselling author of contemporary fantasy novels for teens and children, including Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale and the #1 New York Times bestselling Spiderwick series. She has been a finalist for the Mythopoeic Award and the Eisner Award, and the recipient of the Andre Norton Award. Holly lives in Massachusetts with her husband, Theo, in a house with a secret library. Her website is www.blackholly.com.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (August 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316008095
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316008099
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.2 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,677,092 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Deborah VINE VOICE on September 13, 2009
Format: Hardcover
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.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an amazing collection of fiction with everything from sci-fi conventions, to cheerleaders, to star gazing and prep schools. Holly Black and Cecil Castellucci came up with the idea for the first story in this collection in 2007 at Comic-Con in San Diego. The story would be a nerd love story - a Jedi and a Klingon wake up in bed at a Science Fiction convention together not remembering exactly what happened. They realize that their preferred alternate realities, theologies and practices are diametrically opposed, and yet they find they like each other. But soon upon having the idea for the story they realized nobody would publish it, so they went to their geek friends far and wide and asked them to contribute to a collection, and what an amazing collection it is.

To be honest, I picked it up because Holly Black was one of the editors and I generally really appreciate and enjoy her work. And yet it surpassed all my expectations; I plan on tracking down works from a number of contributors and reading them from the pieces found in this collection. Their work will be great. The contributors are:

Holly Black and Cecil Castellucci
Tracy Lynn
Scott Westerfeld
Cassandra Clare
M.T. Anderson
Cynthia Leitich Smith and Greg Leitich Smith
David Levithan
Garth Nix
Lisa Yee
Kelly Link
John Green
Barry Lyga
Sara Zarr
Wendy Mass
Libba Bray

And between each short story is a comic, illustrated either by Bryan Lee O'Malley or Hope Larson. The back of the dust jacket gives definitions of both geek and geektastic. They are:

Geek \gek\ n: 1. A person often of an intellectual bent who is disliked 2.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Geektastic was an entertaining collection of stories about all things Geeky. Some stories stood out as better than others. Some good ones that I enjoyed were One of Us, I Never, The Wrath of Dawn, The Truth about Dino Girl, It's Just a Jump to the Left and Everyone But You. I really enjoyed The Quiet Knight! It was lovely. I especially liked the Quiz Bowl Antichrist, this appealed to me because I participated in Scholastic Bowl in school and now coach it as a teacher! David Levithan and John Green write with their usual style and wit that I always love. This is My Audition Monologue was great! It took me right back to high school productions where the favorites always got the leads. I loved The Stars at the Finish Line!

Others were a bit slow or hard for me to connect with. Maybe that is a sign of my level of geekiness, which leans more Buffy and less Star Trek and Comic books. I am disappointed about some of the sex and drinking content. I was hoping to include this book in my classroom library, but it isn't really appropriate for me to give my students at the middle school level, though many of them would enjoy it. Secret Identity was kind of creepy. Overall an enjoyable collection of short stories.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The stories are pretty good but the age limit seems to be 18. What happened, are there no 20+, 30+, 40+ year old geeks? Because those are actually the majority of folks at a normal convention. Too bad it's so limited. I would have liked to read a story about a geek like me, not 20 stories about 14 year old geeks.
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