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Dogface Hardcover – January 18, 2008

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 325 pages
  • Publisher: MacAdam Cage (January 18, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596922583
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596922587
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.4 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,983,477 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. A 14-year-old boy with an affinity for all things military makes for an extremely likable protagonist in former naval officer Garigliano's dark, wonderfully twisted debut. Habitually uprooted by his beautiful mother, Cecile, Loren despises her ever-revolving carousel of dolt boyfriends, so he revolts by torching the golf course where Cecile's latest dish, golf pro Tom, tees off. Loren gets caught, and Cecile reluctantly ships him off to Camp Ascend!—a six-week rehabilitation program for young miscreants headed by Ray Kellogg, aka the Colonel, an ex-con scam artist who charges a $7,000 fee for treatment at the ramshackle campground staffed by the Colonel's suntanned, heavily coiffed wife, Kitty, and Kitty's sadistic, malevolent brother Donovan, who likes to play drill sergeant and torture kids. Loren, clever and smitten with pretty fellow inmate Liz, uses the skills of the seasoned operative to navigate and, eventually, defuse the escalating dangers at Camp Ascend! in a thrilling denouement. What initially seems like a wacky teenage romp morphs into a harrowing story about resilience, redemption and the will to survive. Garigliano excels with this sinister, superlative debut. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Bookmarks Magazine

Rejected by 25 publishers before finally making it into print, former Naval officer Jeff Garigliano’s debut novel is being billed as adult fiction despite its young protagonists and adolescent themes. “I looked at ‘young adult’ books and I didn’t like them and it didn’t belong there,’ states Garigliano. Most critics agreed with him, citing the novel’s black humor, violence, and sex scenes. (Only the Cleveland Plain Dealer felt these elements were “gratuitous, like a sex scene added to a movie to avoid the dreaded ‘PG’ rating.”) Despite the debate over the novel’s proper market and a few slow spots, the critics were pleased with Garigliano’s strong characters, authentic dialogue, and obvious gift for humor that had reviewers laughing out loud.
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Loren fancies himself a member of the elite Special Forces, looking for a way to manage his helplessness in the face of his mother's revolving door of boyfriends, each with demands the teenager finds it impossible to comprehend, his natural reaction rebellion. By the time Loren acts out against the current boyfriend, the golf pro, his mother and the pro join forces, solving the problem of what to do with the unruly child by sending him to a camp for out-of-control teens. Although the brochure suggests otherwise, the reality is that Camp Ascend! is a huge con job, "The Colonel" fleecing desperate parents and offering little more than a controlled environment with no government restrictions for the safety of the hapless teens. Bullying their young charges, the Colonel, his wife, Kitty, and her brother, Donovan, have no intention of helping the kids, subjecting them to physical extremes and exhausting exercise, punishment the arbitrary method of behavior modification.

After days of frustration, it occurs to Loren that the place is run by three inadequate bumblers- and that escape is possible. Unfortunately, the Neanderthal Donovan is in charge of control and punishment. Kitty spends all her time indoors, ordering from catalogues, cooled by AC, choosing to remain ignorant of the activities at the camp. Likewise, the Colonel focuses only on counting the money in his various offshore accounts, planning their eventual escape should the law close in. The day to day logistics fall to the bully, Donovan, whose misguided rage puts all the kids in serious danger. Everything comes to a crashing halt on one fateful day, Loren and the others playing David to Donovan and the Colonel's Goliath.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A. Feiring on January 30, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Engaging and cinematic from the first moment. The main character, pyromaniac Loren, is an immensely likeable, possible sociopath in the making, merely looking for the love of a good woman, whether his mother or the vegan object of his affection at Camp Ascend! and preferably both.

Gorgeously written and surprising, some scenes and characters seem to give homage to the best of pulp fiction yet the serious character development and nuance make those nods a completely captivating wink, wink.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By R. Ballister VINE VOICE on March 1, 2008
Format: Paperback
Loren is a mixed up kid. As such, he gets sent away to Camp Ascend!, which is supposed to be a "boot camp" for troubled teens. However, Loren soon finds out the camp is all a scam, run by "the Colonel." Loren calls upon his knowledge of special forces (gained from years of reading SF books), rallies the other campers, and proceeds to fight back as only an angry 15 year old boy can. What ensues is both exciting and extremely funny, and when this one gets rolling it's hard to put down.
Jeff Garigliano does a great job of developing his characters, and along the way mixes in some pretty comical situations that keep the story light, easy to read, and above all, fun. Don't miss this one.
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Format: Hardcover
Fourteen-year-old Loren is a special forces operative without a mission. Ever since he found out that his absent father was in Special Ops, Loren has been obsessed with the military. He knows survival skills, weaponry, explosives and tactics. The only problem? Too often, Loren's military expertise is aimed in the wrong direction, as when he lights a golf course on fire to rebel against a golf pro who is his mother's latest in a long, long string of short-term boyfriends.

This time, though, Loren's mother (not to mention her boyfriend) is fed up with Loren's aimless destruction. They sign him up for Camp Ascend!, a quasi-military wilderness camp that promises to turn troublemakers around in six weeks or less --- for a mere $17,000. Even before his mom leaves the parking lot, Loren is sure that there is something wrong with Camp Ascend! He has no idea just how twisted the camp is, though, until his mom is too far away to help him.

To start, there's Ray Kellogg (a.k.a. the Colonel), the head of the place, who isn't really an ex-military man at all. He is more like an ex-con. There's his wife, Kitty, a high-maintenance lady who vents her frustration at being stuck in the sticks by ordering thousands of dollars of clothes and curtains through catalogs. And then there's Donovan, Kitty's no-good brother, who despises kids, hates the Colonel and has a sadistic streak.

Soon Loren is on the mission of a lifetime, figuring out which of the other campers he can trust, befriending some of them and discovering that maybe a mission can be more rewarding if you actually have something important to say.

It's hard to believe that DOGFACE is Jeff Garigliano's first novel.
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