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StorySnoops Children's Book Reviews | Waiting for Normal | Leslie Connor
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Waiting for Normal
by Leslie Connor
PUBL. RECOMMENDED AGE: 10 and up
LEXILE READING LEVEL: 570L {what is this?}
PUBLISHER: Katherine Tegen Books
YEAR PUBLISHED: 2008
NO. PAGES: 304
GENRE{S}: Realistic Fiction
MAIN CHARACTER GENDER: Female
AWARD{S}:
ALA-ALSC Childrens Notable Book
A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
YALSA Top 10 Best Books for Young Adults
Schneider Family Book Award
ISBN: 0060890908
READ & REVIEWED BY: Eden - StorySnoop


The Story
Waiting for Normal—Book Review

After the breakup of her mom and step-dad's marriage, twelve-year-old Addie yearns for just a "normal" life, which she defines as, among other things, "being able to count on certain things." But her mom is about as far from predictable, reliable, or normal as you can get. She is all or nothing--her way or the highway, and nothing in between. While life with her mom in an Airstream trailer parked on a busy street corner in upstate New York can be fun at times, it can also be a lonely, frightening way to live. Addie is ever hopeful that someday she just may find normal.
The Scoop
Waiting for Normal—Book Review
{spoiler alert}

This is the poignant story of Addie and her mother Denise, who loves having babies, but is emotionally ill-equipped to care for them. She’s lost custody of her two younger daughters because of neglect, and even though she wants to be a good mom, she is back to her old ways as soon as she hooks up with a man she met online. Denise’s bad behavior includes neglecting to tell Addie that she is dyslexic, leaving her alone for extended periods, getting pregnant again despite her track record, then failing to inform the dad-to-be and continuing to smoke. Addie does find a hero in her adult neighbor who is undergoing cancer treatments, and in her former step-father who lives out of town. She is remarkably resilient and hopeful, and there is a happy ending to her story. The subject matter is mature, but handled in an age-appropriate way. All things considered, it is probably best for tweens on the older or more mature end of the spectrum.
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