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Camilla Hardcover – Bargain Price, April 27, 2009
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“Struggling to make sense of all that conflict, walking the snowy city streets with a boy named Frank, Camilla tries to fathom the sweet, slow progress of desire.” —O, The Oprah Magazine
From the Publisher
Then she meets Frank, her best friend's brother, who helps her to feel that she is not alone. Can Camilla learn to accept her parents for what they are and step toward her own independence? --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Another thing fascinating about the book is that each character has his or her own take on what Life is. These philosophies are great to take apart when analyzing each character's motivations. Madeleine L'Engle is good at writing books with many different characters because she can give each one a different take on Life (as she does here), on Death ("A Ring of Endless Light"), on Love ("A House Like a Lotus"), and on Existence and the Universe (any book in the Time Quartet).
The plot is basically about how a young girl, in the course of a few weeks, becomes a young woman. The story is deeper and richer than that description, however. What makes "Camilla" stand out among other bildungsroman stories for young people is the fact that its protagonist's "growing pains" are less troubling and awful than usual, not because the author gave her a break, but because she had learned to cushion her fall into adulthood with a strong faith in the beauty and goodness in the Universe. If I could compare Camilla Dickinson to any other person, real-life or fictional, I would pick Anne Frank.
For me, getting involved with Camilla's plot was so unsuspectingly gradual that I was shocked when I found myself totally engrossed and already halfway into the book. A warning for those who are already avid fans of L'Engle--this book might come as a surprise. It has a different tang.
Camilla is set, not on an island or in the country, but in New York City, and the book captures the city's atmosphere. This world is harsher, the characters, in a sense, are more human. L'Engle does not hesitate to build very complex relationships between the characters or show human nature and emotion naked on the page.
A usual, L'Engle introduces the reader to classical culture and innovative ideas about the world, religion, and existence. Camilla is a regular L'Engle character whose sensitivity and honesty are rolled together with her personal desires and sense of insecurity. Through her, L'Engle further addresses several issues, including self-proportion, family troubles, human perception of God, and especially growing older and feeling less protected.
I strongly recommend this book to absolutely anyone. The dialog is refreshing, and neither the characters nor their emotions are sugarcoated. Their ideas and personalities will linger long after you're finished.
Camilla is the story of Camilla Dickinson, a 15 year old living in New York City, right before the Vietnam War. It was written in 1965, and it was probably one of the first "coming of age" books. In the story, Camilla learns her parents are not the infallible beings she thought they were. She learns of their mistakes, their infidelities, their coldness, and she must learn to love them because of that.
Camilla begins to see Frank, her best friend's older brother. She must learn to deal with her friend's jealousy and she must learn to understand these new feelings she has for Frank.
Ms. L'engle approaches the topics of suicide, life, love, and religion with her usual sensitivity. Camilla is a character the reader will grow to care about and admire as she finds a more adult footing in the world.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Unlike, Ms. L'Engle's other books, this one starts dark and stays dark. It felt as if it had less of a plot line, and it was more of an adult plot line, so not what I was... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Jane Peranteau
Timely story about young adults and challenges with parents.
Good life lessons. There is an excellent new film based on this story. Director -Cornelia Moore.
Having only known her books written for youth, I was not ready for this reminder of my anguishing moments growing up. Read morePublished 14 months ago by C. Hendry
I thought that Camilla was not up to Madeleine L'Engle's standards. I love all of her "Wrinkle in Time" books as well as the Austin series. Read morePublished on October 2, 2013 by Marion Foerster
"Camilla" is actually between 3 and 4 stars for me. I had never heard of this L'Engle book before so I was interested to read it. Read morePublished on February 18, 2013 by Barbara L. Terpstra
This is one of L'Engle's earliest novels and is realism, rather than fantasy. Ass is characteristic of her, it focuses closely on the internal life of an adolescent girl going... Read morePublished on February 3, 2013 by Anne with an e
I seem to go about things the wrong way with Madeleine L'Engle's works, having read "A Live Coal in the Sea" first before reading "Camilla". "A Live Coal... Read morePublished on December 15, 2012 by RCM
There's a wonderful line in "The Lion in Winter" in which Eleanor of Aquitaine candidly remarks to her husband, "I don't much like our children. Read morePublished on October 17, 2011 by Christina Hamlett