First things first, I’d label “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” as FEELS, especially if you are (a) gay, (b) an orphan or (c) all of the above. But, you know, it’s basically feels ahead for everyone who has at least a little bit of a heart. Also, there is a self harm passage in the story. If that’s your vice, be advised, it doesn’t come up until the last part of the story though.
And the fact that Cameron is an orphan is no spoiler because it says so right on the back of the book. It’s the beginning of the story and so much comes of it. I’m not sure I was prepared for just how many feels this story was giving me. I know dead parents is a dangerous ground to tread on for me but damn, this one. Especially since Cameron has a close relationship with her Grandmother and I was crying within the first 100 pages. Probably way less. I don’t even remember.
It’s the story of Cameron through her teenage years and we cover them by summers, mostly. Summers and the girls that came with summers as Cameron is very clear on only liking girls. There is, at least to Cameron, never any discussion as to what she is, it’s obvious she’s a lesbian and I liked that very much. There was no coming out angst. Instead, there was a very real angst when, in her 17th summer, Cameron falls for straight girl Coley, and they fool around only for Coley to make a 180 and set Cameron up to be sent to a Christian gay conversion school. It’s as fucked up as that sounds, yep.
Seriously, this book made me feel so many things. I was worried for Cameron, especially at the end with the conversion therapy stuff and I wanted to shout at her aunt for sending her to this thing but the story is set in the early 90s. It was a different time and her aunt actually thought she was doing a good thing. I’m glad Cameron always had people she could turn to, even in the hopeless places but it still makes you think. I can’t even put all my thoughts into words, this is just an incoherent mess of this and that.
It’s a great book, an important and well written one. It’s not always easy to read and quite long but oh, so good. Cameron is the lesbian tomboy protagonist dreams are made up of. Maybe that’s just me though. She’s an authentic teenager, not a goody-two-shoes but not a completely destructive person either. She deals with her troubles in her own way which I can relate to so well.
I don’t quite know how to explain it but she felt just so real to me. I will keep this story with me for a long time, I think. There isn’t anything squee-worthy about it. It’s not that kind of happy story, it’s raw and honest and good.
Also, can I just say how much I love the cover art for the book? Because I do, it fits very well with the story imho (in my homosexual opinion :D).