Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Book Review | The Miseducation of Cameron Post by E. M. Danforth

Released: February 7th 2012
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Pages: 470 pages
Genre: YA, Contemporary, LGBTQ

Set in rural Montana in the early 1990s, emily m. danforth’s The Miseducation of Cameron Postis a powerful and widely acclaimed YA coming-of-age novel in the tradition of the classic Annie on My Mind.   Cameron Post feels a mix of guilt and relief when her parents die in a car accident. Their deaths mean they will never learn the truth she eventually comes to—that she's gay. Orphaned, Cameron comes to live with her old-fashioned grandmother and ultraconservative aunt Ruth. There she falls in love with her best friend, a beautiful cowgirl. When she’s eventually outed, her aunt sends her to God’s Promise, a religious conversion camp that is supposed to “cure” her homosexuality. At the camp, Cameron comes face to face with the cost of denying her true identity.  
The Miseducation of Cameron Post is a standalone YA contemporary novel that follows the main character Cameron through four years in her life as she figures out who she is and who to trust. I really wanted to like this book and had high expectations for it because I know Raeleen (padfootandprongs07) and lots of other people on BookTube really loved it and while I found this book to be really interesting I also thought it was a little bit too long and detailed. E. M. Danforth's writing style is however really beautiful! This book is set in Montana in 1989 and the descriptions of it set a really nice scene of the time and place the story is taking place in.

“...and there I was sending all the wrong signals to the right people in the wrong ways. Again, again, again.”

I think the protagonist, Cameron, had a good story to tell but her character was hard to connect with because she was so irrational and I didn't understand so many of her actions but these might just have been there to show the flaws in her character. The story itself was really intriguing but quite frustrating to read at times. At one point in the book, Cameron's aunt finds out about her relationship with another girl, she sends her to a Christian correction school (which is what they call it in the book) where they straighten out teens who are 'sinning' because of their sexuality or because they aren't following the correct gender roles.

One of the things that bothered me about this book was how we were introduced to a lot of diverse characters starting from Lindsey in Seattle to Cameron at the Christian school and were told about their totally different situations but it was completely unbiased. It might be that it seems so outrageous or clearly wrong that readers can interpret it well enough themselves but I would have liked it if the author could have elaborated with her perspective on the situations.

I did really enjoy the wide range of characters starting from Cameron's girlfriends, Lindsey and Coley to her friends at the correctional school, the pastor there and her family at home. I thought the ending was very fitting to the story and the place that Cameron is at in her life. 

Overall I would give this book a 3 out of 5 stars (or acorns) because it had a really interesting plot and characters but the story was longer than it had to be and included lots of unnecessary details. I would recommend this book if you want a different type of YA LGBTQ read set in the last century with different characters.


Have you read The Miseducation of Cameron Post? What were your thoughts about it? 

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