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This review is spoiler-free. There is a part, however, after the rating that has spoilers. You have been warned. 😛
Title: Camp Payback
Author: J.K. Rock
Publication Date: April 29, 2014
Publisher: Spencer Hill Contemporary
Series: Camp Boyfriend #2
Acquisition: Netgalley / Spencer Hill Contemporary
I love contemporary series books where I get to see the stories of the other characters as well, and I think that I would definitely be following the Camp Boyfriend series. I love how the authors give each of the characters a chance, whether they be the good girls or the mean girls. I’m definitely excited to read Camp Forget-Me-Not, the first full novel on a mean girl. But apart from all the fun and romance, the Camp Boyfriend series also looks into much deeper themes and calls into question societal behavior that inadvertently harms others.
Out of all the Camp Boyfriend series books, I think that Camp Payback has the most complicated story. There were so many reasons why Alex and Javier couldn’t freely be a couple. Camp Juniper Point’s strict rules on male and female segregation was the least of their worries (or for most teen campers anyway since no one really cares about the rules unless the adults catches them). Alex was like a celebrity in her own way, but not the kind that she dreamed of becoming. Her parents are famous for Wholesome Home, a blog where Alex stars as the rebel child of the “wholesome” family despite her true nature. And Javier definitely could not be part of that world. Not only would Alex’s parents disapprove of him, but his whole life is already complicated as it is.
I feel like all these two people needed were to be given a chance to let themselves shine. People had already pegged them to be the troubled young ones that they aren’t. I think that’s why it was easy for Alex and Javier to understand each other. They might not be undergoing the same thing, but they definitely know what it’s like when people see them for who they are. They were very talented individuals. They are far from perfect though, and it was really nice to see them grow throughout the story. I also loved that this book has an epilogue. It’s not too far into the future, but it does show where they went and I loved how it ended. Oh, and it also hinted on the story for the third book.
OVERALL, Camp Payback deals with a little more drama but still maintains that fun and romantic environment that I love seeing in fluffy reads. Alex and Javier are a funny and adorable couple that also showed a lot of depth in their personalities. There are a lot of conflicts in this book, but there are also a lot of happy moments. This is my fourth taste of the Camp Boyfriend series and I see myself reading whatever companion novels the authors may produce. I love their writing and sense of humor. I love how they bring characters together. And I love how they give a lot of food for thought. I recommend reading Camp Payback, as well as all the other books in the series.
I’m a little sad that we didn’t get to see Lauren or Matt in this book even though there’s a good explanation for that. Seth did show up though since his family owns the place. They’re pushing Trinity to get his attention. I know she has liked him forever, but I do not like that pairing. Please no. I think Trinity needs someone who’s as quirky as her or who is someone quite different. And Seth needs someone who can help him come into terms with his past. But who knows, maybe the authors can make it work if ever that pairing does happen.
- This is all based on personal opinion, and as much as I’m open to other people’s opinions, I hope you understand that this is based on what I feel. I avoid giving out spoilers as much as possible, too.
- I do not own most of the images I use, and some may be subject to editing.