Fifteen-year-old Stacy questions the strange world of high school, love, her role in a harsh universe, and life, in Normalish.
People tell you high school’s so great and wonderful, but they’re lying. It’s mostly horrible and full of disappointment. It sucks. Your best friend abandons you. The jerk you’re in love with pretends to be into you, and then the big dump. The boy you’ve really clicked with as a friend decides to go all crushy over you, so you break his heart just like yours was — smashed into little pieces. Your sister goes mental, and you get involved with a guy who’s even crazier than she is (who you know is a very bad idea, but you do it anyway). Math only adds another stink of failure to the whole thing.
High school blows. Just ask freshman Stacy. She’d want you to know.
Stacy starts the book out by listing everything in her life that she doesn’t have. I should have paid a little more attention to that list at the time because it is like a preview into the rest of the book. One thing after another happens to Stacy and to the people around Stacy and I was really interested in seeing everyone’s reactions and how they dealt with things. What I liked about Stacy was that she was so real. She was just like a normal teen. Everything was heightened. Every guy was a true love, everything was vastly important. But, here’s the real kicker- she didn’t seem annoying or petty to me. It all just worked for her. Margaret Lesh did a great job of making very realistic characters.
Normalish also shocked me more than a few times. I couldn’t believe two of the big things that happened. (and, nope i’m not going to tell you what they are. :p) These were real emotional events and honestly, I’m surprised that the majority of the characters handled the day to day life as well as they did. I do wish we saw a little bit more of adorable Chad at some parts in the middle. He is just way too cute to have him fade into the background during the middle.
The writing of Normalish was a real treat. I enjoyed Margaret Lesh’s writing style. The chapters were all varied in length but most of them were pretty short. That’s why it reminded me of journal or diary entries. Sometimes the book was choppy, sometimes the book was more flowing. All of it matched the events of the story. It was really well done.
Fans of realistic ya and some of the more raw and gritty, but still cute, contemporary books, Normalish would be a great addition to your bookshelves. Especially where nothing is “normal”, Normalish is great!