The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore

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Member Reviews

This was an utterly compelling novel about the long term effects of childhood trauma and how individuals react to different events. 

It definitely made me think long and hard about what I would do if I found myself in a similar situation to the girls in this novel.

In “The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore” the story was told from different character perspectives and although I sometimes have problems with this format in terms of what is actually going on, in this case, it worked well for me due to Kim Fu’s great writing style. Each paragraph contained real depth and passion which really won me over.

I have discovered a new author and I would read more from Kim Fu, for sure.

I highly recommend “The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore” and I think that this novel would appeal to adults as well as teens.

I received a complimentary digital copy of this novel at my own request from Legend Press via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.
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Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.  

This book is exceptional.  I could happily write a long essay on it, looking at group dynamics, individual psychology, the long-term effects of childhood trauma...but I don't want to give too much away.  

The structure of this book is so interesting and really pushed it on for me.  I very much enjoyed the story of survival at the island, and then the breaks to each individual girl, showing where they came from and where they would end up in their lives.  Such an interesting device and it gives a really multi-layered picture of each character.  

It was one of those books that I was desperate to discuss with someone.  

The ending is contemplative as well; I've really thought about it a lot every since.  

Excellent read.  I would definitely recommend to both teens and adults as I think both groups would get something different from it.
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Five girls stranded on an island have to find their way out, there are tensions, power struggles and their  actions perhaps not the nicest. This was the premise for Kim Fu’s novel The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore, so I was expecting a Lord of the Flies, how wrong I was. Yes, it did contain some similarities but what was unusual and what made this novel so distinct and different was the alternative approach adopted by Fu. Fu didn’t concentrate the bulk of her narrative on the girls fight to get out, instead she examined their lives in the afterwards, what effect it had on them and it is what made the novel so utterly compelling.

Fu beautifully set the scene, the ethos behind Camp Forevermore laid out, our first meetings of the five girls gave us an initial feel for their characters, hinting at their individual nuances as they eyed each other up. It created a sense of foreboding and anticipation, a glimpse of possible trouble ahead as they set out in their kayaks on their adventure.

The adult leader, Jan was an interesting character, so full of herself, lackadaisical in here approach to responsibility and safety awareness, another clear indication that all would not go well.

It was only when tragedy struck that Fu revealed the true characters of the girls, as she took us away from the island to a time in the future, to five girls who had to process the events and get on with the rest of their lifes. This is where Fu excelled, as she unravelled five girls with widely differing and varied lifes,  some more likeable than others.

Nita was the hardest to like, the genius, the one with the hard impenetrable exterior, that made you have to dig deep to find anything that made you empathise with her and even like her.

There was Dina, spoilt, and somehow detached from real life, who I found utterly frustrating, and many times I found myself wanting to shout at her, shake her and make her wake up to the real world.

Isabel, the loner, who I found to be quite intense, yet I felt quite sorry for her, her life full of tragedy that she found to process.

Andee, was driven, always busy as though if she stopped she would have to think, have to remember and deal with her emotions. Fu’s  interesting and unique approach to Andee’s story meant we didn’t get up close to her as we did the other girls, yet she was still able to give us a sense of who she was.

Siobhan was my favourite and indeed the most likeable, the one who emerged as the natural leader, although you would not have guessed that at the beginning. Fu’s approach to Sobhan’s story was slightly different, it was almost as if Fu deliberately flipped what you expected and gave you the unexpected. Her story was perhaps the most harrowing, laying bare the true characters of the girls, and the ultimate need to survive. I found it quite unsettling to read, but understood why Fu had done it, to tie all the ends together, to give us answers and ultimately to blow apart the tension she had built.

The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore was a brilliant examination of human nature, of how we react to dramatic events, to those around us and the effects we take with us into the future. I admired Fu’s ability to pick apart and dig deep into the psyche of each of the girls, to highlight their differences and show off the wonderful variety and diversity in her narrative.

It was a novel that made you think, about how you would react, what you would do and to hope that you never found yourself in a similar situation and I loved it.
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There isn't much to hold your interest in The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore. The "fateful trip" (quote from the book's jacket) is spaced between each girl's life story. Each girl's life is boring, dull and ordinary. The incident at camp has no impact on their lives. It didn't keep them connected to one another (but you would think it would) although two girls do became sisters in law (which was mentioned almost as an afterthought). In reading the chapters on each girl's life you would never have known that the incident happened if not for the chapters in between. Why was Andee's story (girl at camp) told as her sister Kayla's story even though the book jacket gives you the impression that Kayla was the one at the camp? I don't know. I did not like the books format, the characters were nondescript and the story (including the "fateful trip") was ho-hum.
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The main narrative strand of The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore crafts a plot not very unlike the iconic classic survival novel, The Lord of the Flies - a group of children who, through the poor decisions of the adults around them, find themselves alone and abandoned on a desert island. The level of violence does not reach that shown in the Lord of the Flies, nowhere even close, but the palpable desperation felt by the girls, certainly leads them to fall into patterns of behaviour that would have been looked on a little strangely if they had been in the midst of regular society.
But, unlike in the original tale, the artful, sweeping vignettes in this novel that form the rest of the girls’ lives, turn it from a simple tale of impossible situations and their tendency to shift people into barbarity, to one that turns two-dimensional, fight-or-flight, kill-or-be-killed motivations, into three-dimensional human lives.
The time on the island is narrated by Siobhan and, as eleven and twelve year olds are wont to do, she spends most of her time on the island, sectioning her fellow campmates off into various rigid boxes, based on how they have acted during the little time she has known them: Nita as the mean girl, Isabel as the quiet one, Dina as the beautiful one… Kayla as the one who titters and joins in with the teasing. And, if that had been the entirety of the novel then, in the minds of the reader, that is what the girls would have stayed.
But humans have multitudes, they do not fit into boxes.
The lives of the four are so much more interesting, so much more real, that their pithy labels belie and, through sneak peeks into their trials, tribulations and even just the everyday moments that make up the rest of their lives, The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore grounds them in the hearts and minds of the book’s readers as truly complex young people. Kim Fu artful use of the sweeping structure of the short novel to dive into the very core of human emotion and motivation deftly explores how one formative moment, the two-or-three-days that were spent on the island, reappear over and over in the lives of the girls and how the past shapes people into the adults they become.
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*I received a ebook copy of this novel for free through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Rating: 3/5.

Camp forever more is a sleep away camp for girls. There their days are made up of swimming lessons, friendships and excitement. During their time at camp they go on an overnight kayaking trip, but things don't go to plan and they end up stranded with no adults in sight. This novel follows five of those women, not just through their time at camp, but also their future after it.

I love summer camp style novels, they always conjure up images of laughter, friendship, freedom and comfort for me. This novel did switch between character perspectives, a writing format I’m not always a fan of, and although it was written well I did find it made it hard for me to keep track of what was happening. I really liked the authors writing style overall, each paragraph was written with such depth and passion, and that was what made this novel enjoyable for me.

Character wise I did like the variety and switching between characters definitely kept it interesting. Perhaps this novel could of worked well as a series of novellas or perhaps longer books exploring each character, their past and their future.

Overall this was an OK novel, I always feel it takes true skill to create a novel that switches between perspectives but still manages to capture interest again and again. I would recommend this novel to fans of contemporary fiction, although the idea behind it may seem more YA the novel always looks at characters later in life making it suitable for fans of adult fiction too.
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The book presents the stories of several girls who survive a tragic experience at their camp. Each chapter is a glimpse into the lives of the girls as adults from each of their perspectives. Alternating chapters bring the reader back to the camp as the tragic event unfolds. I enjoyed the character development and structure of the book but felt that there was not enough connection to the events at the camp. I wanted to learn more about the camp itself. Overall, I would recommend the book since the writing and stories were interesting.
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I'm really struggling to find the words for this book. 
This is the first time I have read, or even heard of, a YA/Adult crossover and I need more. Having a mix of voices - both different characters and these characters at different ages was so interesting and I applaud Kim Fu for her ability to write a multiple POV that didn't bore me or get tedious. The different perspectives were invaluable to the story and really helped to get across what the author wanted to tell.

In The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore, our main event is an overnight camping trip that goes wrong but in between this story we see how this event has shaped the girls involved. We follow them individually - some in their adulthood, others growing to teens and then older. We learn how the event changed them but we don't focus on the event. Primarily this book is about the characters, not the plot and I can see why some people have rated this low, why it may bore some or not resonate but for me, there was just something about it, maybe the writing or the characters that just kept me going, that made me want to know more about the girls and who they are. 

Overall, I gave it four stars as I'd have liked more mystery as I do feel in some ways the event didn't really play a part in the girls' futures but then, I suppose not everyone is going to react in a major way - there is one character who you can tell has been massively impacted and acts accordingly, but not everyone will and I guess what I'm saying is I enjoyed this book and although I'm a little lost for words on what to write I'd implore you to give it a read and see what you think!
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I definitely wasn't sure about this book at first. It starts with a group of 9-11 year old girls at camp, and it soon delves into their friendship dynamics, their homesickness, their self confidence issues. But it quickly dives into something so much more.

Five girls are put into a group together for the Camp Forevermore overnight adventure to kayak upriver and camp on a secluded island. Kayla, Nita, Dina, Siobhan, and Isabel, and the night they go on an excursion with their Camp Leader and wake up to find her dead in the tent. Having travelled further upstream to an island beyond the one they should have been spending the night on, the girls don't know when, or if, help will arrive. Jan, their counselor, said there were people on the island, a town and civilisation away from the remote patch of beach where they were spending the night, but she also said there was bears, and they have no idea which way across the island to head for help. Spanning from their teenage years to adulthood, the girls' own chapters interspersing the story of Camp Forevermore follow their relationships, their families, and the decisions they make, all of which are influenced by that time they got lost at Camp Forevermore.

What I definitely should NOT have done before reading this book was scroll down to the bottom of it's Goodreads page and read some reviews of it. I liked the sound of the blurb, and that was why I requested it from NetGalley, but the first few reviews I read were not very complimentary about The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore. And so I went into it feeling a bit apprehensive.

And I stayed that way for a little while.

First off, the characters were much younger than I thought they were going to be. At 9-11 years old, I thought that this was going to be more of a MG/YA than a YA book, which is no problem, it's just a younger type of book than I normally read. And that put me off a bit. But, that's on me, and my preference. That's not anything the book has done wrong. But that's not how it is at all.

Yes, the main focus of the book is when the five characters are at Camp Forevermore, and go on an overnight excursion which goes horribly wrong. But interspersed between the narrative of this night you are treated to an overview of the rest of their lives, seeing them out of highschool and into marriages, careers, heartbreaks, and successes.

This is where I become more unsure of my thoughts.

You don't get the full extent of what happened at Camp Forevermore until the very end of the book, and so you enter the lives of these girls after the fact without understanding what happened to them. And it's not interspersed within their section. You get a snippet of Camp, then Nita's chapter; a snippet of Camp, then Kayla's chapter, and so on. So by the time you've reached the end, you feel very much removed from what happened to Nita after she left Camp, and I found it quite hard to relate those events with the information dump you're given about each of the five girls.

My biggest dislike about this book, is that I found it quite difficult to tell each girl apart. Despite their own chapters, they are isolated away from the other characters during this chapter, and so when they are all together again, I had trouble picking each one out individually. There was no real distinguishing features, and yes this did get better as the book went on, but it still was quite difficult. It doesn't help that the sections of the book when they're all together at Camp makes up only about 20% of the book, so it's not a lot to work out who is who.

Despite that, I loved reading The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore. I was always desperate to get back to it, and became so involved and engrossed in both the main storyline at Camp, and each girl's individual storyline. Kim Fu's writing style is gorgeous, and I'm already looking for what else she's written.

I can understand why it's not everybody's cup of tea. Each section of the book dedicated to each girl feels very separate from the rest, and it is almost as if it should have been five different books that someone has somehow melded into one. But for me, it worked. Yes, I would have liked there to have been more in their adult lives that linked back to what happened at Camp, because to be honest, for the most part there is actually very little mention of Camp, if at all. But I still loved it. There was something about the way it was written and how it was split up by reverting back to Camp that really worked for me and kept drawing me back in.

I am, however, a little disappointed with the end. I somehow feel like there could have been a bit more, it was slightly anticlimactic, but also still a little open ended. Like it wasn't quite finished.

For me, the two complaints I have with this book haven't ruined my reading experience of it, and how much I loved reading it definitely overshadow the fact that I'm still not sure which one was Kayla, and which one was Nita. A really enjoyable read, 4 out of 5 stars, and like I said, I'm looking forward to exploring Kim Fu's back catalogue.
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The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore was a book I requested off Netgalley and I have to say it was a little different than I was expecting which I feel like I say an awful lot. Maybe I need to stop expecting certain things to happen in books, because they never happen and I always realise that it sort of puts a negative cloud over the book.

I think the problem I had with The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore was that it was obvious who survived at the end because of the way that the story was set up with the different character’s future selves being shown before the events were actually let to play out. I will say I was worried that there was going to be a Lost kinda ending to it which would have annoyed me.

The characters were all well developed but I didn’t think that the future stories were necessarily important for the plot or for the development of the event. I would have liked for there to have been more of a reaction to the fact that they were left on the island on their own. I do think there was a complete Lord of the Flies vibe going on which I really enjoyed! The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore did that quite well because it wasn’t over the top but was completely believable.

I did really enjoy the story and I found the stories about each of the characters interesting if not structured a little weirdly. I definitely think that the kids were a little older than what they were supposed to be and that was something that I struggled with a little. I would have loved for more time to have been spent on the actual camp and maybe to have seen more interactions rather than diving right into the drama and panic.

I really loved the writing style all the way through the story and I thought it worked really well with what was actually happening throughout the story. I think that this is what saved the story for me, and made me get to the end rather than ending it halfway through.

When I was thinking about The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore and whether I would recommend it or not, I wasn’t sure. I definitely think that it’s an acquired taste, and for that reason, I can’t recommend it one way or the other.
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First of all I have to say that the cover of this book is gorgeous. I love the colours and there’s an almost haunting quality to it that works beautifully for the book. I was really excited to start The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore mostly because the idea of a summer camp fascinates me as an experience. Aside from one or two Girl Guide overnight camps and a Duke of Edinburgh award excursion I have no idea what it would be like to spend a summer with a huge group of other girls. I feel like it would have been a really intense experience and reading this book definitely confirmed that.

The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore has an intriguing structure with chapters focusing on the incident at camp interspersed between character studies of sorts that focus on the lives of the five central characters. It’s an interesting way to tell this story. As the reader finds out more about the women these girls become it puts a totally different slant on the perception of the events taking place at camp long ago. These chapters give the reader a chance to get an in depth appreciation of how different people think and behave, and more importantly why. All of the sections about the girls are skilfully dealt with, they have a sort of melancholic sadness to them that I loved. They are also quite introspective in the sense that they take a brutally honest look at how these character’s minds work and how a seemingly unrelated trauma at camp has had such a huge impact on them.

Whilst the character chapters are arresting and thought-provoking, I actually found the chapters set at Camp Forevermore even more compelling. The author effectively demonstrates how biting and cruel kids on the cusp of adolescence can be and how much influence their insecurities can have on both themselves and each other. I thought this book captured entirely how people can be pushed to extremes when faced with a completely out of the ordinary situation.

Overall I found The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore really enjoyable. I love a book that gives me an insight into human psychology and the motives behind people’s actions. It is well written and dealt with telling this story in a unique and contemplative manner. If you are a fan of character-driven novels then I would absolutely recommend it.
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I loved the structure of the book - where we have a chapter detailing what happened at Camp Forevermore, and then the chapters in between about the characters after the incident. I do wish the individual chapters on each of the girls had been split up into smaller chunks. I'm not a fan of long chapters and prefer them to be more bite-sized, but this won't bother most people.

I loved how it showed that when something traumatic happens in someones past - it is then interwoven throughout the rest of their life. Even things that may at first glance seem completely irrevelevent could be a symptom or cause of the trauma itself. Personally, I feel the author might have been trying to convey how trauma affects everyone, no matter what walk of life they come from. Also, how it affects everyone differently, but how it can unite people and make them the same of sorts. 

The writing was phenomenal - there aren't many words I can use to describe how stunning the authors work is. I'm excited to read what they write next!
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I think I agree with the majority when they say it has a misleading synopsis.

The structure of this book is strange but tempting- alternating between past and future. I liked the writing style of Kim Fu, but none of the characters held my attention.

Overall and okay read :)
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The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore is about a small group of girls, who briefly meet at a traditional summercamp and their lifes afterwards.
I really liked reading about the different girls , their stay in the camp and the actions they took to survive the odds. The book beautifully captured the different financial and social backgrounds of the girls, mental health and the importance of luck in ones life.
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I devoured this novel all in one go
The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore is a deftly written and self-contained story, centred around a disastrous event that happened to a group of girls at summer camp in 1993. From this event, told in short fragments between every other chapter, the novel branches out in different directions and in each chapter relates the story of each girl in the group, both before and after the incident. 

In some ways the novel is like a collection of short stories tied together by this one shared and momentous event. Isabel and Dina’s stories interlink more clearly, without giving anything away, though there are other thematic similarities between the different sections of the book. Nita’s story was my favourite, particularly the part concerning her relationship with her son. And Isabel’s, because to me she seems the most perplexing and sad. 

My main criticism of the novel is that the ending seemed a little off. I’m not sure about the last section, following Siobhan after the incident at camp, which I found slightly on the nose and a bit unsatisfactory as an ending. 

I also liked how their experience at the camp wasn’t the only formative experience. It happened and was very significant for a few of the girls, but the rest of their lives before or after are talked about in more detail. This is most apparent in Andie’s story, the only one not told from her own perspective, which is interesting for a few reasons. Andie is intriguing, partially because her internal self remains a mystery during the novel, possibly reflecting her hard exterior and self-awareness.

Little snippets of scenes continued to resonate with me after I put the novel down, such as one particular exchange between Nita and Siobhan about leadership after she has broken her ankle. The novel is essentially a series of little scenes like this that inspire contemplation, rather than having one big powerhouse plot that carries the reader along like a train and without room for reflection (which is more like the kind of novels I've been reading lately). The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore was a nice change of pace, and reminded me of the pleasures of reading a novel like this.
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This book review will be posted on my blog in February as part of the official book tour:

RATING: 3.5-4 stars.

So this was a really well-written novel; nuanced and well-structured. Kind of a funny one to place in terms of age of readership, I think; predominantly it read as Adult fiction (possibly literary?) but there were elements that definitely felt more Young Adult. This is mainly because the chapters span over so many different times in the characters lives, sometimes from when they are 6 years old right up to in their 30s and 40s. Although it does also cover the middle-grade kind of age group (particularly in the Camp Forevermore chapters) it obviously isn't a book for that age of readership. It isn't just age groups this books spans across, though, it's also places in the world, different people's lives and a wide variety of secondary characters. I think Kim Fu does a really good job of keeping the prose simple and effective and not over-complicating things or becoming hurried/messy. 

It was really interesting to see the many different ripple effects of this one terrifying, wild experience that five young girls share together. To see how it changes them and scars them and effects the rest of their lives. 

I would say that there was less actual writing set during the Camp Forevermore sequence than I expected. I didn't mind this too much, because the whole "survivalist" thing isn't necessarily something I'm massively interested in, but it's something to keep in mind if you're looking for a book entered on that topic. The majority of this novel takes place in the future of each girl's life, outlining how that summer impacted on the trajectories of their lives. Overall, I really enjoyed this structure and the pacing. I think the book kept moving really well, and I'd be interested to know what made Kim Fu decide to tell the Camp Forevermore chapters mainly from Siobhan's perspective and then have her "future" told in just a few short paragraphs, as opposed to the large chapters the other girls had. 

Overall I really enjoyed this reading experience. There were some really emotive moments in both the Camp Forevermore chapters and the future ones. I think the novel could have been even longer actually, but the brevity of it somehow made it more effective.
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I love ensemble pieces, especially those that explore the bounds of friendship between girls instead of pitting them against each other. Unfortunately for me, this wasn’t that sort of book. It felt more like an anthology of short stories loosely connected by a central narrative, which would have been fine if I’d ever felt that the shared experience of a traumatic event at the camp years before, was ever explored. It wasn’t. And it wasn’t examined how this event shaped and changed the girls. There’s some good writing here, but either my expectations were way off as to what this was intended to be, or the execution really was off. Perhaps a little of both. This really wasn’t for me.
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"She felt a thrilling, terrifying dissolution of self"

* * *
3 / 5

The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore had a misleading synopsis. I believe I would have enjoyed this book a lot more if I opened it with the correct impression of what it would be about. According to the back, this book is about five girls who attend a camp and go on an overnight kayaking trip to an island. Once there, they find themselves stranded and without adequate adult supervision. And yeah, this does happen, but it takes up about thirty pages of the book.

"Sadiq stared back at her, as if he knew something about her that he wished he didn't, something he could never unknow"

What The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore really is is a collection of short stories. Five girls are on that island and one of them is our opening narrator, who tells us about the camp and the kayaking trip. Interspersed between her sections are the stories of the four other girls, from their childhoods to camp to into their futures. Fu traces the lives of four wildly different young women as they grow up and grew old. These stories are imaginative and diverse and charming, but they also didn't belong to the book I thought I was picking up, a quasi-Lord of the Flies book but with young girls at a camp. 

So whilst I liked these diverges into a sort of speculative look at how different people are drawn together and what they might grow up to be, I ended up getting a bit bored, waiting for what I thought was the real story to start. Of course it never really did. The actual part about being lost on the island was pretty dull and anti-climatic. 

With a better synopsis that more accurately tells the reader what the book is going to be about, The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore could be a fantastic read. But it's hard to enjoy as it deserves when you're eagerly waiting for a tale of wilderness survival that never really happens. 

My thanks to Netgalley, the publisher, and the author for an ARC of The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore
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A group of girls find themselves stranded on an island on a sleepaway camp. The Lost Girls recounts that fateful day that was supposed to be an adventure for all, soon turns dark and no way home. And no one else knows where they are.

Ah, this was very disappointing. It starts off very strong with all these girls who join this camp but then find themselves trapped on an island and must fight for their survival. The chapters interchange with a POV from one of the girls when they’re on the island and years after the incident occurs. Quickly, the book loses momentum and makes this interesting story about how trauma impacts an individual long after the initial event rather unsatisfying.

The After scenes were actually quite good and peaked my interested quite a lot. And so were the Before scenes but, together, it doesn’t read as cohesive as I would’ve preferred. The lack of connection we have to their past, I think, affects the entire novel. It’s a very disjointed read.

I know this review seems very negative, but I still found this book quite a standout. A lot didn’t work for me in this book but everything else was rather engrossing. Like I mentioned before, I really enjoyed the exploration of how past events emerge long after they’ve happened. Some of these girls seemingly recover, but not everyone does. I really appreciated the characters and their personalities. I did find some point of views more engaging than others. But all their voices shine through despite my predisposition with the novel. I’ll definitely want to read more from Kim Fu.
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Synopsis: Everything is fine at Camp Forevermore. It’s not until the girls paddle their kayaks out to an island for an overnight adventure that things start going terribly wrong. Before they know it, they’re forming allegiances and fighting to survive. Will they ever find their way home? And if they do, will they be the same girls who set out for Camp Forevermore?

‘The Lost Girls of Camp Forevermore’ is dark and at times devastatingly sad. I like this though. It doesn't patronise the reader and is raw in its exploration of the girls’ lives. Kim Fu is clearly a very skilled writer and has a unique ability to make you feel nostalgic for experiences you’ve never had, and to transport you to familiar places to which you’ve never been. I enjoyed her writing style immensely and found the book engaging to read.

Let’s talk about the structure! The experience of the girls at Camp Forevermore is used as a framing device, within which individual narratives of each of the lost girls’ lives are interspersed. This non-linear structure leads the reader to understand the characters more deeply and leads them to empathise with the children's plight as they fight for survival on the island. This feature came with both advantages and disadvantages. 

On the one hand, this takes away some of the suspense from the main plot, as every time the story veers off into the future of a character, we know they're going to survive. At the same time, there is still one girl we’re not sure about yet, who is also the character the narrator focuses on during the survival story (told from a limited third person perspective). This helps keep the tension going.

I also can't help feeling that the story may have benefited from some stronger direct links between the girls' camp experience and their lives afterwards. This did happen occasionally, probably the most so with Isabel and Dina, but it could have gone a lot further. In my humble opinion, this would have led to a more cohesive and well-rounded story.

On the other hand, this structure allows the reader to get to know the characters on a personal level. It makes reading about their experiences on the island more engaging, as you become invested in the women they will grow up to be. On top of that, they’re interesting characters. They each have their own struggles and issues, which you sympathise with considering their history. It was a clever structure to use, I just wish there had been more solid links between the past and future experiences of each girl.

The story of the girls on the island gets increasingly interesting as you read on. As the food and water supplies run low, the girls start getting desperate and scared. This brought about a kind of ‘Lord of the Flies’ type vibe. I found myself wishing the survival story on the island went on for a bit longer, with a few more twists and turns, as I felt like I was really getting into it by the time it was over.

Overall, it was a good story. I enjoyed the tangents and the main plot, though I admittedly craved for a slightly different ratio between the two. At times it did feel like I was reading a collection of short stories, as opposed to a novel. It was well written though, fun to read and I polished it off in a couple of days. After deliberating for a while over whether to give it 3 or 4 stars, I settled on 3. It was enjoyable and I’m glad I read it.

Thank you very much to Netgalley and Legend Press for the ARC. I appreciate you giving me the opportunity to read this novel and share my honest feedback.
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