Monday, November 20, 2023

Today's read... Boot Camp by Gina Musa

I'm tempted to scream 'Happy Book Birthday' to today's read, since it came out last week....but that would probably be stretching things a bit. Still, happy book birthday, Boot Camp! This one gives off tons of Summer vibes, but that doesn't mean I can't enjoy it now. I don't hit many YA romances, anyway, and this one promises to pack a bit of fun and humor too. 

So, let's just head right in and take a peek.

by Gina Musa
Wattpad Books
YA Romance

Gina Musa’s tender, thoughtful debut is about finding your strength in the most unlikely of places

Whitney Carmichael has always been the odd one out in her family of athletes. And when her best friend bops her with a tennis ball, it’s the last straw. She’s going to tackle her fears about working out–and she does it by attending a five-week summer boot camp. From the first mile-long run to the dreaded rope hang, Whitney isn’t sure she’ll survive. And toss in the fact that Willow, someone who made her life miserable on an almost daily basis while they were at school, shows up–Whitney isn’t sure how she’ll succeed.

But any journey worth taking starts with a single step. Soon, Whitney’s feeling more confident, winning some competitions, and learning more about herself with the help of her sweet, sympathetic, and more than a little hot trainer, Axel. Her feelings soon dip into something deeper, but campers can’t date their trainers, and her struggles with Willow continue, which leaves Whitney wondering if she just shouldn’t quit while she’s ahead.

Giving up isn’t in her DNA, and the lessons she learns, about herself, about love, about friendship, change the course of her life forever.



With a bit of humor, romance, and self-discovery, this is an inviting coming-of-age which leaves a smile on the face.

Whitney has finally finished her last days of high school, which weren't easy thanks to the constant badgering from the mean-girl of her grade. But then, Whitney always struggles with self-imaging issues thanks to her fitness-orientated family and best friend. Fitness isn't exactly Whitney's cup of tea...until a tennis ball causes her more problems than it should. Determined to turn things around, Whitney enrolls in a several week boot camp to amp up her hidden, sporty side. It's tough, but she's determined. That is, until the mean-girl shows up in the camp. As if that doesn't already put everything on edge, there's signs of a romantic interest...and that will flip everything on its head.

This is a sweet romantic read with a good portion of wholesome messages concerning self-imaging, friendship, and love. While the first scenes allow the last moments of high school to settle in just enough for readers to understand her past, the camp hits soon after and sets the main stage. It holds the fun outdoor excitement a camp book should, while sliding into the older end of teen problems and concerns seamlessly. The moments come across naturally, creating an easy read to get lost in, and Whitney is a kind soul, whose determination and doubts win over right away.

While the romance adds the sigh-worthy touch, it's the character development which makes this read work. Whitney enters the camp with fitness goals but doesn't realize that her lack of athletic skill isn't her true problem. While she struggles with burpees and ropes, the important lessons happen in between. Each one is realistic and rings true to life, making Whitney that much more sympathetic. It's an enjoyable read from start to finish and one sweet, high school romance fans won't want to miss.

No comments: