Things at all-girl Christian summer camp Camp Bellflower have remained the same for one hundred years with a comforting sense of familiarity for fifteen-year-old Maggie who has attended almost every summer of her life. This is something that goes completely out the window when Maggie falls suddenly, hopelessly and, to herself, surprisingly, in love with Erin, an older female counsellor.
This autobiographical graphic novel by Rookie writer Maggie Thrash is a searingly honest coming of age story capturing the confusion of both first ever love and first same-sex love. As Maggie attempts to come to grips with her emotions, she finds herself at odds with the stifling conformist nature of her once beloved summer camp where lesbianism is the ultimate taboo. Maggie’s romance with Erin is composed of all the confusion, innocence and tantalising fixation that anyone who has ever had a crush will relate to. Similarly, the fluctuations and hardships of teen friendships are exposed in all their joyful complications.
Accompanied by watercolour pencil illustrations by the author, the graphic novel is a wonderful insight into Maggie’s world at Camp Bellflower, with the simple, almost unfinished quality evocative of a teenage journal or fan fiction work. With scattered references to Nsync, OTown and other musical greats throughout, this will also thrill teens of the 90s. An exquisite and touching tale that will leave readers wanting more.