Boot Camp by Todd Strasser
Posted by Caitie F on July 20, 2010
Title: Boot Camp
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Hardcover: 238 pages
Summary (from author’s website)
n 2005 more than 10,000 teens were incarcerated in boot camps, most of them against their will.
In the middle of the night, 15-year-old Garrett is “kidnapped” and transported to a boot camp where he is subjected to physical and psychological abuse. The aim? To get him to conform to the camp’s standards. But how can he change if he shouldn’t have been sent there in the first place?
I thought this book had an excellent concept – a smart kid who feels that he has done nothing wrong thrown into an awful place and trying to get out. The camp is horrendous and the things that are done to these teens who are there against their will.
I really felt for the main character and completely understood why he felt that he didn’t deserve to be there. He was smarter and more mature than all of his peers and really did not feel like anyone understands him. He is also a good guy. He sticks up for others, even if it means that he will be punished even harder – and these punishments include getting beaten while laying on a concrete floor for days. It is truly horrifying.
What is more horrifying is that these camps actually exist. Parents (if they can pay enough) send their children there to “Straighten them out”…but sometimes send their kid there because they are just not what their parents expected them to be. They aren’t strong, they don’t follow every rule, or they just don’t fit into their parent’s society. That any parent would do that to their child disgusts me.
I cannot really recommend this book to others. I enjoyed a large part of it, but absolutely hated the ending. I was actually disgusted with it and wished I had not wasted my time with the book. I don’t want to spoil the end, but I will say that someone gets punished for completely doing the right thing and it changes them.
Have you read any books that you liked a lot until the ending? Let me know in the comments! I know this and My Sister’s Keeper were the worst for me!