Camp Damascus

Chuck Tingle
Camp Damascus Cover

Camp Damascus


I didn't know what to expect going into this. My experiences with seeing Tingle before this had been entirely satirical, I'd seen the crazy titles he had to books he'd published and assumed he wrote books not for the purpose of seriousness. This book had great reviews however and so I dived in. What I found was incredible... This book hit on some themes that are very close to home for me. It was all the more powerful because of that. The best kinds of books are the ones that teach you about the way you interact with the world. This one helped me realize exactly who is out there to support me and how much it means to me. It was a more sentimental reading experience because of that. Rose's struggles with autism were professed with such clarity. I found myself relating to her in so many different ways, reading an MC that reminded me a lot of myself was exhilarating. I loved the way this book tackled everything, with the edge of horror that I also love.

Then there's the religious side of things, with the emphasis on the church's priority of suppressing being gay. Rose's battle with religion was one I found myself living through years ago. Thankfully it was nowhere near as drastic, but the way she thinks about it coming out of the other side was very similar to how I felt. It was also fascinating to see her dynamic with Saul because I felt like it was perfectly copying me and my brother's conversations (who was grappling with a whole lot more trying to be both Christin and trans) I was astounded, to say the least. This reading experience was kind of surreal.

With all of the personal things I gained from this book, I didn't forget to enjoy the fantastic writing that supported everything. We had a thrilling plot with just enough horror to top everything off. Tingle has a new fan, I was INCREDIBLY` impressed with this novel. I'll be spreading this one among the people close to me for a long time.