Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Guest Post by Emily M. Danforth (The Miseducation of Cameron Post Blog Tour)

Today we have Emily M. Danforth here for a guest post! This post is part of The Teen Book Scene's blog tour for The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth. You can find out more about the tour here. Make sure to visit all the other stops of the blog tour if you'd like to know more about The Miseducation of Cameron Post!

These are character book picks by Cameron, the main character of The Miseducation of Cameron Post.

I think that, as a younger reader, Cameron Post would have been a big fan of the storytelling of Roald Dahl. She would have appreciated his fantastical situations and often grotesque adult characters and almost always resourceful kid characters, like eponymous heroine Matilda Wormwood from Dahl’s novel Matilda. Then, after the death of her parents, Cam would appreciate Dahl’s fiction even more, particularly the way it so often encourages—or seems to encourage—readers to conclude that in some instances certain parents or guardians don’t always know what’s best for the children they care for. And, in the most dire of those situations they actively make things decidedly worse for the children they care for. (Examples include Matilda’s parents, certainly—but also most of the parents in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, with the exception of the Buckets; and the loathsome aunts in James and the Giant Peach; and several more I’m blanking on, at the moment.)

As a teenager I think Cam’s continual process of self-discovery would lead her to all kinds of novels. In the book she actually reads and responds to Rita Mae Brown’s seminal lesbian bildungsroman Rubyfruit Jungle. (And to any readers unfamiliar with Rubyfruit, I recommend it highly: Molly Bolt is an often hilarious and always compelling protagonist.) I would imagine that she’d also stumble upon (perhaps because of Lindsey’s influence) and be moved by novels like Nancy Garden’s Annie On My Mind or even Alice Walker’s The Color Purple.

She also would find much to admire in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, Carson McCuller’s The Member of the Wedding, and of course: Catcher in the Rye. (And I hope that she would eventually get around to reading John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, if only because Jane Fonda (the character in my novel, of course, not the actress) quotes from it at length while they’re both at God’s Promise.)

And because I’m answering as if Cameron could pick books from today (even though my novel takes place twenty years ago), I’ll add Nick Burd’s wonderful The Vast Fields of Ordinary; Julie Anne Peters’ Keeping You A Secret; Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home; Curtis Sittenfeld’s Prep; Jacqueline Woodson’s Hush, and Sarah Waters’ Tipping the Velvet. Finally, I can see Cam getting pretty excited about The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (and the subsequent Lisbeth Salander novels in that series.)

Make sure to check out all the other tour stops, and keep your eye out for The Miseducation of Cameron Post, which will be released on February 7th.

The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth
(Amazon | Goodreads)

When Cameron Post’s parents die suddenly in a car crash, her shocking first thought is relief. Relief she’ll never have to tell them that, hours earlier, she had been kissing a girl. But that relief soon turns to heartbreak, as Cam is forced to move in with her conservative aunt Ruth. She knows that from this point on, her life will forever be different. Survival in Miles City, Montana, means blending in and not making waves, and Cam becomes an expert at this—especially at avoiding any questions about her sexuality. Then Coley Taylor moves to town. Beautiful pickup-driving Coley is a perfect cowgirl with the perfect boyfriend to match. To Cam’s surprise, she and Coley become best friends—while Cam secretly dreams of something more. Just as that starts to seem like a real possibility, her secret is exposed. Ultrareligious Aunt Ruth takes drastic action to “fix” her niece, bringing Cam face-to-face with the cost of denying her true self—even if she’s not quite sure who that is.


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