About the Book
By Lev A.C. Rosen
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Release Date: May 26th 2020
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBT, Queer
From the author of the acclaimed Jack of Hearts (and other parts) comes a sweet and sharp screwball comedy that critiques the culture of toxic masculinity within the queer community.
Sixteen-year-old Randy Kapplehoff loves spending the summer at Camp Outland, a camp for queer teens. It’s where he met his best friends. It’s where he takes to the stage in the big musical. And it’s where he fell for Hudson Aaronson-Lim – who’s only into straight-acting guys and barely knows not-at-all-straight-acting Randy even exists.
This year, though, it’s going to be different. Randy has reinvented himself as ‘Del’ – buff, masculine, and on the market. Even if it means giving up show tunes, nail polish, and his unicorn bedsheets, he’s determined to get Hudson to fall for him.
But as he and Hudson grow closer, Randy has to ask himself how much is he willing to change for love. And is it really love anyway, if Hudson doesn’t know who he truly is?
5 Rules for Surviving Camp
From Randy Kapplehoff (star of Camp, the new novel by L.C. Rosen).
1. First, it has to be the right camp. That means it has to have things you want to do – a good theater program, cute boys, swimming, and rules that allow you to wear as much makeup as you want. Or… I guess whatever you’re into, if you’re not into any of those things, but you really should be into all of those things, cause they’re the best. So make sure you pick the best possible camp. Camp Outland, the LGBTQIA+ summer camp I go to is absolutely the best, honey.
2. Make friends. I know, I said camp was about the stuff you do, but you have to find cool people to do it with! Camp isn’t just for scoping out the hot guys, you also sometimes get up friends with the hot guys and it’s such a good friendship that romance never even enters the equation. Those friendships are so important for surviving camp. They can tell you when you’re being too much, or help you with your audition or tell you to get over that boy you’ve been obsessed with (don’t listen to that part though). I’m lucky in that my two besties, George and Ashleigh are amazing. George is an actor like me, and has great taste in nail-polish, and Ashleigh is a techie, and wears a lot of black, but she’s loyal and fierce. I couldn’t ask for two better friends.
3. Make sure you get a good counselor. This one is hard, because most counselors are adults and most adults are a little tedious, you know? But find the best one you can. I chose Mark, because he’s the theater guy, and he does a great opening number for the counselor talent show (or maybe I should say Diana Loan does). So he might get a little over involved in our lives and his advice is sort of boring sometimes, but he loves theater and he’s always calling his shrink, which is fun to listen in on.
4. Fall for the right boy. This is almost as important and making friends. There’ll be a lot of cute guys if you pick the right camp, so if you’re going to zero in one that one special boy, make sure he’s the best choice. Does he make you feel special? Does he say things that make you feel like you can do anything? Do you wish he could be around you all the time, telling you you’re amazing? Then he’s the one for you. George and Ashleigh would say you should also ask yourself if he knows who you are or you’re his type, but those are less important because…
5. WIN HIS HEART! This is the most important part. So maybe you have to lose the makeup for a summer and cut your hair off and go by a different name and pretend to be a totally different person, but that’s all worth it if he’s the right guy, right? One he’s in love with you, then you can start introducing more of the superficial things, like musical theater and nail-polish to him. It’s about becoming what he wants, making him feel about you the way you already do about him, and then easing him into the stuff he thought he didn’t want. It’s about having a plan. That’s how you win his heart, and once you have him, and your friends and counselor and theater… then you have it all!
Best summer ever, right?
About the Author
Lev Rosen is the author of books for all ages. Two for adults: All Men of Genius (Amazon Best of the Month, Audie Award Finalist) and Depth (Amazon Best of the Year, Shamus Award Finalist, Kirkus Best Science Fiction for April). Two middle-grade books: Woundabout (illustrated by his brother, Ellis Rosen), and The Memory Wall.
His first Young Adult Novel, Jack of Hearts (and other parts) was an American Library Association Rainbow List Top 10 of 2018. His books have been sold around the world and translated into different languages as well as being featured on many best of the year lists, and nominated for awards.
Lev is originally from lower Manhattan and now lives in even lower Manhattan, right at the edge, with his husband and very small cat.
You can find him online at LevACRosen.com and @LevACRosen