Title: Slept Away
Author: Julie Kraut
Published: May 26 2009, Delacorte Press
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Overall Grade: A-
Laney Parker is your typical city girl: she's more into sushi than s'mores, and would rather be at a spa instead of sleeping under the stars. So when Laney's mom "surprises" her with new summer plans (read: Camp Timber Trails in Nowheresville, Pennsylvania), Laney is anything but a "happy camper". Give up partying, relaxing, and tanning for arts n' crafts, weird suburban kids, and nature hikes? No thanks! But when Laney arrives at Timber Trails, not only is her precious iPhone (her only connection to civilization) taken away, she's stuck with a group of bunkmates who give "mean" a new definition, and an overly-peppy counselor who's obsessed with pink. Could this summer get any worse? But then Laney meets an ally in her bunk, and starts crushing on a guy that is definitely NYC Laney-Uncrushable. This might be Laney's worst summer yet....or it could be the best....
I honestly wasn't expecting much from Slept Away. It looked very cute and like a light summer read, but the plotline seemed very typical: city girl is forced to go to camp. City girl is reluctant to go to camp. City girl hates camp but ends up loving it.
Instead, I was blown away! The book soared above my expectations. It was quick, light, but huge loads of fun. I literally couldn't put it down, reading into the night and thinking, Oh, just one more chapter, just one more! Laney was a very relatable character, and the humor in this book rocked. I actually laughed out loud a couple of times. Some parts were just simply hilarious!
This book was one of those books that made you feel like you were part of it. Having never gone to sleepaway camp, I loved reading all the descriptions of the campfires, color wars, kooky counselors, even instructional swim, each boosted by hearty doses of humor.
The one thing that bothered me was that Laney seemed very whiney and stubborn. She was just so stuck on hating camp that she never let herself have any fun. After a while, her rants got annoying and repetitive. She just was a bit of an irritating character.
However, I loved how Ms. Kraut perfectly combined humor, romance, and summer fun into a blend more delicious than a good s'more! I look forward to reading more of her work in the future. A perfect read for summer!