Mambo Dogface

Mambo Dogface

by Garigliano Jeff
     
 

A sharp, dark, humorous debut about a teenage commando wannabe who runs amok in a boot camp for juvenile delinquents.

Fourteen-year-old Loren is obsessed with all things military: Special Forces, secret missions, rules, and regulations—it’s all so finite and orderly. Especially compared to other parts of Loren’s life. His mom, for example,

Overview

A sharp, dark, humorous debut about a teenage commando wannabe who runs amok in a boot camp for juvenile delinquents.

Fourteen-year-old Loren is obsessed with all things military: Special Forces, secret missions, rules, and regulations—it’s all so finite and orderly. Especially compared to other parts of Loren’s life. His mom, for example, keeps introducing him to a string of loser boyfriends, and the latest one, the golf pro, is so irritating that Loren decides to stage a night raid and vandalize his beloved golf course.

When the mission goes embarrassingly awry, Loren’s mom sends him to Camp Ascend!, where a dedicated staff of specialists are trained to whip “mixed-up” teens back into shape. Or so it seems.

What Loren’s mom doesn’t know—and what Loren soon discovers—is that Camp Ascend! is actually a scam run by an ex-con nicknamed “the Colonel,” his ditzy, overly tanned wife, and her manic, kid-hating brother. And so Loren finally has a real-life mission: to free himself and his new posse of delinquent friends from Camp Ascend! and to take the place down.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

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 2007 Reed Business Information
Library Journal

Welcome to Camp Ascend! Situated just downstream from an EPA-condemned site (markers with skulls take the guesswork out of finding the place), this wilderness camp is just the pricey ticket for that rowdy youngster who has already been booted out of every other place. The staff includes Col. E. Raymond Kellogg (a title not used on any official documents or, more important, payment checks); his wife, Kitty, who in lucid moments can see to her campers' pharmaceutical needs; and her hard-pressed brother Donovan, who is in charge of the camp's day-to-day operations and serves as morale booster. Into this morass enter the six boys and three girls who, whatever they may have done in previous lives, clearly don't deserve this. Chief among them is the feisty but endearing 14-year-old Loren, who is a Special Forces wannabe. The outcome of the face-off between the "Colonel" and Loren is never in doubt, but this first novel by magazine editor Garigliano is as bracing as that first plunge into the pool at summer camp. For all larger public libraries.
—Bob Lunn

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781596922587
Publisher:
MacAdam/Cage Publishing, Incorporated
Publication date:
01/01/2008
Pages:
325
Product dimensions:
6.25(w) x 9.21(h) x 1.13(d)

Meet the Author

Jeff Garigliano is a magazine editor living in New York City. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and served as an officer in the navy for five years before getting a master’s degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dogface is his first novel.

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