Tuesday 13 December 2022

Chaotic Good

Finished December 8
Chaotic Good by Whitney Gardner

This teen novel is told by teen Cameron. She has a twin brother Cooper and their family has just moved from Portland, Oregon to Eugene, Oregon. It is the beginning of summer before their senior year of high school. Cameron loves to sew and create new fashion items, and she's also into costuming for cosplay. She is applying for Fashion Design school and has a portfolio that she needs to get ready for her application. 
When she ventures into the local comic store for inspiration, the clerk treats her in a very condescending way, because of her gender and she feels very uncomfortable. After some thought and discussion, she decides to take advantage of her gender neutral name and dress as a boy the next time she shops there. This decision ends up leading to a summer of deceit, new friends, and an introduction to the world of Dungeons and Dragons (D and D). It also means that her new relationships are built on pretty shaky ground and at some point she's going to need to be truthful about her gender. 
Another aspect of the IRL part of this story is her online life. She has a blog where she talks about her fashion creations, including her cosplay creations, and this draws attention from the internet trolls. As she finds herself assaulted by this foul-mouthed mob, threatened and verbally assaulted, she finds her boy persona a way to escape that reality for a while. 
I liked Cameron as a character, and liked that D and D also gave her another connection to her father. This was an interesting story looking at some real world issues around gender and online harassment.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed this one too - the sewing bits were fun for me :)