Friday, April 7, 2017

Don't Feed the Trolls by Erica Kudisch

Don't Feed the Trolls by Erica Kudisch

Review by Lauren

source: copy from publisher; all opinions are my own

Official SummaryGaming while female is enough to incur the wrath of the dude-bros, and they’ve come for me. Instead of fighting back, I’ve created an alternate account. Male name, male pronouns. And I’ve met this girl. I’ve always liked girls, and Laura’s adorable and smart and never gives up, and she likes me back. Or rather, she likes the man I’m pretending to be. But I can’t tell her I’m a woman without the mob coming after her too.

And besides: I might not be a woman, not really.

The truth is, I don’t know what I am anymore. I’ve spent my whole life being told how I’m supposed to act and what I’m supposed to be, but none of it feels right. And my lie is starting to feel truer than anything I’ve ever been.

There’s a convention coming up, but the closer it gets, the more I have to choose: lie or fight. But if I don’t stand my ground as a girl, am I letting the haters win?

Then again, those aren’t the only two ways to live.

Review: I was invited to take part in the blog tour for Don't Feed the Trolls and I was very much excited. First off, how fun/awesome is that cover? Right? Right! Now, to the story! To be honest, I've never been a gamer. Despite this, I definitely heard a lot about #gamergate and how people were basically harassing female players...for being female. It was crazy and seriously messed up and I like the author's take on something similar happening to her MC. What adds a bit of a twist is that Daphne - or as she eventually goes by Daphnis - isn't even sure if she completely identifies as a woman. There is some mention of other people being transgender, but Daphnis isn't given a label for how she feels and eventually expresses herself. I liked this though! Not everyone wants or even feels comfortable with labels.

As for the gaming aspect of the book, there were definitely some parts that I wasn't 100% sure on - usually when characters are discussing games/gaming- but besides that, it really wasn't that confusing. Maybe that doesn't make a lot of sense, but basically, even with the things I didn't really know, the author kept me from getting lost, and that's obviously something I appreciated a lot.

This book is great for people that are gamers, but it's also nice for anyone that feels "different" or loves geeky culture. After all, a big part of the book takes place at a convention! There are characters of all sorts of backgrounds in this book, so it's full of diversity! Whether it's gender, sexuality, or race - a lot of people will find themselves represented in this book.

A lot of people reading this review probably engage in some sort of online culture, whether that's gaming or not, so I think this book is important for all of you. Trolls exist everywhere online and when it comes down to it...don't feed them. They aren't worth it. This book is worth it though!


Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity said...

That cover really is cute! Its one that catches your eye immediately, which can be so important to get people interested in that first point of contact.

Like you, I don't game, but I have heard some horror stories about gamergate, as well as the online gaming community in general. It sucks that it can be so harmful for anyone that isn't a cis straight white man.

I think books that explore identity without necessarily giving the character a label do have their place in the bookish world. Some people don't want labels, and others just can't find one that fits them. That doesn't take away from their identity, though.

I'm glad you liked this one, Lauren! And lovely review :)

Lisa Mandina said...

Okay, I was really into the description, and then the twist, of not knowing if she is really a girl, wow, I'm really intrigued now! Glad you liked this book. I am going to share it with some people I know who are gamers that will probably really enjoy it! Great review!

Greg said...

Nice review! I think the gaming and convention aspects would appeal to me, and also that she doesn't want to be constrained by labels. And of course #gamergate and all that is so ridiculous. This sounds like a great book!

Verushka said...

This cuteness! That cover just screams geeky goodness and I can appreciate any book that takes on the gamergate trolls, and adds a diverse love story to boot!

Lola said...

What a great cover! Definitely one that stands out. I sometimes game, but I actually have read only a few books about gaming. This one does sound fun with the focus on gaming.