Em is confused about a lot of things: who she is, what she wants, how she’s going to pass Alchemy when she’s awful at it. The one thing she’s not confused about is how much she wants to buy her best friend (and college roommate) the best birthday present ever. Luckily the local magic supply shop is hiring.
Her plan to get a job there would be working perfectly if not for her coworker Phineas who is in turns aggravating and endearingly awkward. She’s not sure if she wants to date him or wants to be him. The more time they spend together the more she thinks it may be both.
Help Wanted is an 18,000 word novella with a gender and sexuality questioning f/m romance. It is the first in a new series about students at a contemporary magic college. (via Goodreads)
I received an eARC of Help Wanted from the author in exchange for an honest review. Emery and I are also mutuals on twitter.
Help Wanted was an absolute delight, no holds barred. It’s short, it’s sweet, it’s got great side characters, and it’s inclusive!
Our main character, Em, is actively questioning her gender and her sexuality throughout this story. She has a small group of queer, literally magical friends who support her, and who she gets a little bit jealous of. This story, despite it’s fantasy trappings, felt like incredibly real college interactions. Each character has their own magical specialty, whether it’s spiritual magic, cooking magic or transformation, and their own personality. Even though this is a novella, you get a true sense of who each of these characters are – just enough to want more of them all!
The main conflict is internal for Em, trying to decide if she (pronouns used in the book) likes the guy she works with, or if she likes his aesthetic for herself, all while saving up enough money to buy her best friend and roommate. The romance was very light, which I also loved.
I loved the world that Emery built in Ashveil Academy, one that I hope they will bring us more of very soon, because I want more of these characters and their adventures! I highly recommend you pick up a copy of Help Wanted if you like sweet, low stakes fantasy. You can do that on Amazon!