The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson is my second of the year and I loved it so much I thought I would review it for you and hopefully persuade all of you to go read it as well.
Published: 1st January 2015
Bought: Tesco in paperback
Goodreads Average Rating: 4.32
My Rating: 94% (5 Stars)
Synopsis: Two boys. Two secrets.
David Piper has always been an outsider. His parents think he’s gay. The school bully thinks he’s a freak. Only his two best friends know the real truth – David wants to be a girl.
On the first day at his new school Leo Denton has one goal – to be invisible. Attracting the attention of the most beautiful girl in year eleven is definitely not part of that plan.
When Leo stands up for David in a fight, an unlikely friendship forms. But things are about to get messy. Because at Eden Park School secrets have a funny habit of not staying secret for long…
I loved this book for multiple reasons, not only does it succeed in sending a positive and important message to teenagers in an entertaining way, it also made me feel all the emotions. And if you know me, you know I love it when a book makes me emotional.
This book features two different perspectives that are both realistic and relatable. The two main characters David and Leo have two completely different lives, growing up in different family dynamics and social environments, and yet that doesn’t change the fact that they were both very likeable. I was rooting for them and I really hoped that things worked out in there favour. I ended up feeling quite protective of them because they were just such amazing and distinguished characters.
The main discussion point of this book is being normal and how, really, if you’re open minded you would realise that actually there is no such thing as normal. Just because someone is different to you doesn’t mean they deserve to be treated badly. This book sends this message perfectly, it features bullying, loneliness, anxiety and family problems. Something almost all teenagers can relate to.
This book also handles transsexualism in a wonderful way. Never did this book make me feel uncomfortable by explaining something in a way that made transsexuals sound abnormal. It seemed right on point with how it explained how it feels to be transsexual, the process of discovering yourself and it doesn’t hide the fact that there are people who are transphobic (who should all read this book but most probably never would because they’re closed-minded.)
I would recommend this book to everybody, because when a book has you awwing and jumping with joy and gasping with shock and shouting in anger, you know it’s got to be a good one.
Thanks for reading