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Literature / Gena Finn

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Gena/Finn is a Young Adult novel by Hannah Moskowitz and Kat Hegelson.

Gena is 18 and is about to enter college. She's excited about leaving her seemingly immature friends behind and gaining even independence from her already distant (literally) parents. Finn is 22 and has just finished college. She's moved to California to stay with her long-time boyfriend Charlie and is struggling to find work while there. They're also both huge fans of the television cop drama Up Below. Gena writes fanfiction, and Finn draws beautiful fanart. On Tumblr they exchange these messages while handling their regular lives. Things change when they start sharing personal details via private messenger, which sparks a relationship which is both startlingly close and difficult to define.

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Tropes for this novel include:

  • Accidental Adultery: Much to Charlie's chagrin, his almost-fiancee Stephanie gets into an emotional relationship with Gena.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: As a kid, Gena suffered from hallucinations about fire. She still takes medication for it. She does mention the term "pseudo-schizophrenic", but only once and nobody else brings up terminology after.
  • Ambiguous Situation: Gena and Finn's entire relationship. There's clearly a connection there that verges on romantic, but never actually crosses that line. And it becomes even more ambiguous at the end when Finn and Charlie become stand-ins for Gena's parents.
  • Bi the Way: Though she doesn't use the term "bisexual", Zach reminds Gena that she's had crushes on girls since she was young. Gena admits that she may be romantically attracted to Finn.
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  • Bittersweet Ending: Zach is dead, Gena has to take a leave from college to handle her Heroic BSoD, and Finn has lost her entry level job. But Gena is slowly coming back to life, Charlie has accepted her into his life with Finn, and they're getting some money to handle it.
  • Buddy Cop Show: This is essentially what Up Below is about, exploring the Unresolved Sexual Tension between Jake and Tyler.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Even Tylergirl93, who is a bit of a troll, is worried when Gena's involved in the onset fire and doesn't post on social media, which could mean that she's dead. Thankfully, Gena survives the fire.
  • Expy: The show with Tyler and Jake, Up Below, is essentially a cop AU of Supernatural.
  • Foil: Gena and Finn are this to each other. Gena is just started college and is excited to leave behind her childhood and become an adult, whereas Finn has just finished college and is apprehensive of adulthood and all the responsibilities that it comes with.
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  • Former Child Star: Gena was one. She's mortified when Toby from Up Below points her out at a convention.
  • Gender-Blender Name: Online, Stephanie goes by the alias Finn.
  • Heroic BSoD: Understandably, Gena after Zach dies during an on-set fire. She never really gets over it until Finn and Charlie take her in.
  • Hope Spot: Zach on reconnecting with Gena invites her to make a guest appearance on the show, to try acting again and so that he can be there for her. Then the fire happens.
  • Irony: The reason why Gena was cut from the first show was because she suffered hallucinations about fires and was always pulling the smoke alarms. When Zach contacts her and encourages her to make a special guest appearance on Up Below, he and two other cast members die in a real fire on set, which Gena saw but didn't mention because she thought she was hallucinating again.
  • It's All My Fault:
    • Zach blames himself for what happened with Gena, and that he couldn't be there for her. She tells him that brain chemicals were partly to blame.
    • Later, Gena blames herself for the explosion on set because she saw the lights catch fire and thought she was just hallucinating again.
  • Parental Abandonment: Gena's parents spend all their time traveling, leaving Gena by herself. By the end of the story they don't even know she was involved in the explosion.
  • Relationship-Salvaging Disaster: The fire does this two-fold; Finn realizes that she's ready to marry Charlie if he asks, and that regardless of where she and Gena are, or what they are, she wants Gena in her life.
  • Scrapbook Story: It's told in the form of tumblr posts, emails, text messages, news reports, and scraps of poetry that are made during the course of the novel.
  • Show Within a Show: Up Below, and to a lesser extent Man of the House.
  • Traumatic Haircut: This was what got Gena cut from Man of the house: she gave herself an awful haircut during a psychotic episode.
  • Troll: Tylergirl93 is one, often abusing fans of Jake (the other Up Below lead). Though after Jake's actor Zach and her frenemy Gena are involved in an on-set fire, she zigzags this by expressing worry about Gena when the latter doesn't post on social media, while saying the show can recover from Zach's death and perhaps even become better.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Tylergirl93 and Gena seem to have this dynamic. While Tylergirl93 is a troll and doesn't like Jake fans, she does ask if anyone's heard from Gena after the fire and worries about her.
  • Wham Line: At the beginning of Part 3: Explosion on Set of TV Show Kills 3, Injures 5.
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