Hello everyone! Today I’m bringing you a review for a funny, quirky book about changing yourself for another person, challenging toxic masculinity, and being freely queer.
Author: L. C. Rosen
Genre: New Adult Contemporary
Content Warnings: Transphobia, Homophobia, Body dysphoria, harmful language, cussing, sexual content
Randy has always loved his summers at Camp Outland, a place for queer kids to meet and hang out over the summer. The last three years at camp have been full of good friends, nail polish, show tunes, and the summer musical- oh and falling hard for Hudson who’s only into straight- acting guys.
This year will be different though because Randy has reinvented himself into sporty, buff, masculine, ‘Del’ who is Hudson’s dream guy. As Hudson falls for ‘Del,’ Randy has to consider how much he is willing to change and give up for love, and wonder if Hudson will really love him as he truly is.
This book was funny, sassy, and fun to read! I had a blast picking up this book, and I adored all the characters. Randy has such wonderful friends at this camp, and it was fun to see them all supporting him with his ‘Del’ rouse. This book had a hilarious premise, and although it was awkward at times because I hate lying, I still enjoyed reading this story. Randy really goes full method actor for his role as ‘Del’ which was amusing, and I (as a previous theater kid) absolutely adored all the musical/ theater references!
Also, I loved the rainbow of queer sexualities and racial identities that were represented in this book. We got to see characters who were Transgender, Gay, Lesbian, and Demisexual, as well as many different races and POC.
Getting to know Hudson was mixed for me. While I instantly loved George, Ashley, and the rest of the theater kids, but it took me a while to warm up to Hudson. I felt horrible for Randy for feeling the need to change himself to get a guy’s attention. This was a hard concept to support in a book, but I do think it was done in a way that completely challenged love, identity, and toxic masculinity.
As the story progresses and we get to know Hudson more, I warmed up to him. It was still awkward since we knew the ‘real’ Randy inside the masculine ‘Del’ mask, but it got better. It was fascinating to see Hudson’s history with being gay and how his parents and grandmother impacted his life.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed myself during this book. I believe this was a fun, summery book that did a wonderful job challenging straight culture, homophobia, and toxic masculinity. I recommend this book to anyone looking for a romantic book that is full of lovable, queer characters, sexy romances, and summery activities.
Have you read this book yet? If not, you should go pick it up! What are you currently reading?
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