Bookishly Ever After by Isabel Bandeira (2016)
Teen Fiction | Contemporary | Romance
“In a perfect world, sixteen-year-old Phoebe Martins’ life would be a book. Preferably a YA novel with magic and a hot paranormal love interest. Unfortunately, her life probably wouldn’t even qualify for a quiet contemporary. But when Phoebe finds out that Dev, the hottest guy in the clarinet section, might actually have a crush on her, she turns to her favorite books for advice. Phoebe overhauls her personality to become as awesome as her favorite heroines and win Dev’s heart. But if her plan fails, can she go back to her happy world of fictional boys after falling for the real thing?”
Expected Publication Date: January 12, 2016
pooled ink Review:
Oh my golly. Okay so shy Phoebe decides to try channeling some of her favorite book heroines when she begins to develop a crush at school. It’s hilarious, if not a bit cringe-worthy. I didn’t do that in high school but if I did I’m sure it would have been just as awkward. The makeover? On point. The tangled hair toss? Classic. The “sultry” (but actually cross-eyed) look up through your eyelashes? I died. It’s so perfect, funny, and relatable. How many times have I told myself to be more like Hermione or Inej or Katniss, etcetera? I never committed to it like Phoebe has decided to but yeah, I’ve definitely thought about it before. And reading about her experience? Hilarious. This could make a fantastic teen comedy movie that I would watch a million times over.
No spoilers but there’s a scene when Dev snatches one of Phoebe’s books and starts reading from it and I died. I was giggling so hard almost as mortified as Phoebe was at that moment. Just trust me, it’s a scene you’ll want to read (here’s hoping it makes it through to the final round of editing!).
Also super relatable is her attraction to guys who only exist in YA books. So. Relatable. I may have said this a million times but reading as many books as I have raises my future husband standards to sky-high. What’s nice about this book though is that the protagonist does the exact same thing and yet as the plot unfolds it shows how doing so can keep you from real guys who like you for you. Maybe you’re not a kick-ass heroine saving the world from evil fairies and maybe he’s not some dark mysterious stranger who turns out to be a prince but he’s real (and cute) and he likes you for you and that’s worth a heck of a lot more. This book is both a knowing friend and a wise sister nudging you in reminder to not ignore the real world around us because no matter how much better the world may be in books it exists only in books and if you gave it a chance you’d see that the real world isn’t as bad or scary as you think it is (…usually).
Oh and Dev may not be a YA fantasy hero but he definitely reminds me of a classic 80’s movie hero and in my opinion a very worthy person of Phoebe’s attentions. GET OUT KRIS.
What made me fall in love with this book is Dev paired with the incredibly embarrassing relatability of Phoebe’s endeavors.
A very cute story about a bookish knitter and a handsome one-day Bollywood star as they navigate high school, love, and the impossibly high standards of book boyfriends. A tale utterly relatable to any girl who reads fantasy fiction as well as amusingly charming to even those who don’t. Bookishly Ever After is a story that speaks to its readers on more than one level spinning together a fairytale romance that is sweet, awkward, and real.
P.S. I love the casual diversity of the characters! It’s something books need more of (:
Purchase here: Bookishly Ever After
Meet Isabel Bandeira!
Isabel Bandeira grew up surrounded by trees and lakes in Southern New Jersey, right on the edge of the Pine Barrens. Her summers were always spent in Portugal, where the cathedrals, castles, and ancient tombs only fed her fairy tale obsession. Between all those influences and her serious glitter addiction, it wasn’t a surprise when she started writing stories of her own.
In her free time between writing and her day job as a Mechanical Engineer who designs and develops medical devices, she reads, dances, figure skates, and knits.
Isabel lives in New Jersey with her little black cat, too many books, and a closetful of vintage hats. She is represented by Carrie Howland of Donadio & Olson. BOOKISHLY EVER AFTER is her debut novel.