"…If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us…"
--Shylock, The Merchant of Venice
Shakespeare's insight into the plight of a misunderstood and abused minority applies today as well as it did in 1596. Case in point: gay boys. They are mocked, belittled and bullied, often to a tragic end. They never get to tell their own story.
Until now: Julian's Private Scrapbook takes on that assignment.
The Shooting Gallery is the third in the five book Scrapbook series. It continues to explore the world from the eyes of a young gay boy. His needs and desires are looked at honestly, with a sense of humor and without the baggage of present day prejudice.
Julian's challenge: how to get people to take him seriously and stop treating him like a little kid-especially those people he loves, honors, and respects. Surrounded by hundreds of scouts, all working to get ahead, he finds a way.
Days six, seven and eight at Camp Walker: the daring aspects of camp life are featured, along with some new story developments. Julian Draws two portraits: Leonard, and then Mark. Julian and Mark's conferences continue. Julian feels empowered and undertakes a unique challenge: outfitting Nick and Tom's clandestine bedroom. He becomes their self-appointed secret guardian. After hours: Robin sneaks out of bed for a rendezvous at the lake. He and Jack planned this daring exploit during the afternoon free swim period.
There is a lot of comedy and some very interesting new characters. Julian's story becomes part of a special weave; the world of Camp Walker in June, 1962 is colorful, textured, and complex-but above all, it is full of fun and surprises.