Tuesday, 20 August 2013
Camp Boyfriend by J. K. Rock
Author: J. K. Rock
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Released: July 2nd 2013
Pages: 324 (Paperback)
Buy: Amazon UK / Amazon US
Add on Goodreads
The summer of her dreams is about to get a reality check.
They said it couldn't be done, but geeky sophomore Lauren Carlson transformed herself into a popular girl after moving to a new school halfway across the country. Amazing what losing her braces and going out for cheerleading will do. Only trouble is, the popular crowd is wearing on Lauren's nerves and she can't wait to return to summer camp where she's valued for her brain instead of her handsprings. She misses her old friends and most of all, her long time camp-only boyfriend, Seth. This year she intends to upgrade their relationship to year-round status once she's broken up with her new, jock boyfriend, Matt. He doesn't even begin to know the real her, a girl fascinated by the night sky who dreams of discovering new planets and galaxies.
But Matt isn't giving her up without a fight. As he makes his case to stay together, Lauren begins to realize his feelings run deeper than she ever would have guessed. What if the guy she thought she was meant to be with forever isn't really The One? Returning to Camp Juniper Point was supposed to ground her uprooted life, but she's more adrift than ever. Everything feels different and soon Lauren's friends are turning on her and both guys question what she really wants. As summer tensions escalate, Lauren wonders if she's changed more than she thought. Will her first big discovery be herself?
I don't usually like novels that revolve around romance, but the concept of this book captured my attention. Geek-turned-jock fighting off two hot guys? It's a nerd's fantasy, and I couldn't start reading it fast enough - Camp Boyfriend is a girl's ultimate summer read.
When Lauren's whole family moved to a new state, she decided to reinvent herself, turning from an unpopular geek to a cheerleader at the top of the food chain. However, Lauren doesn't feel a hundred percent comfortable with her new self, and can't wait to get away to her yearly summer camp - and her camp boyfriend. But Lauren's jock boyfriend, Matt, isn't so ready to let her go, and follows her to the camp to prove that they belong together. A summer that usually promises fun and great memories threatens to become a nightmare, as Lauren must choose between two guys she can't let go of.
Yeah, yeah, I know - Camp Boyfriend is a cliché from the word go. It's a love triangle, plain and simple, something that can grate on your nerves if it isn't done properly. I do admit that there was a point where I just couldn't be bothered to pick it up - I didn't care enough to find out what happened next, as the plot is a bit repetitive throughout. However, I did enjoy reading it, as it was quite light-hearted and so very...teenage-y. What Lauren goes through is just so typical, so normal, and it was refreshing to read about it and being able to sympathise with her and her situation.
Lauren was a good narrative to read from - very likeable, very easy to relate to. You can't help but be on Team Lauren right from the start. I'm sure most readers will know what it feels like to have your friendship group suddenly turn on you for no reason, and to feel completely bewildered by it. So despite being slightly annoying, you could get past that because of how down-to-earth she was.
The two boys...I loved and hated them at exactly the same time! And I never knew which team I was on - one moment I wanted Lauren to choose Seth, and the next I wanted it to be Matt! And I didn't know what boy she would pick eventually, either - it was pretty evenly matched. I did prefer her final choice, though, as it reflected the journey she had gone through throughout the book.
Despite the repetitiveness of the novel, I really enjoyed Camp Boyfriend. It was light-hearted and good fun to read, yet pinpointed some key emotions that a lot of teens can relate to. The writing was flawless, the plot was intriguing, and it was a great read to take away with me on my holiday. I'd definitely recommend it as a top summer read.