Waiting for Normal Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2017-08-29 
Review Score: 5 out of 5 star From 40 user ratings

"Waiting for Normal is an inspiring contemporary realistic fiction novel about a twelve-year-old female who is neglected by their mother and seeks support from her stepfather and other caring adults within her community. I listened to the audio version of this book in NON-PRINT. The young protagonist narrates the story and the audio enhances and helps to develop the characters and the plot.

Addie is the young protagonist who lives with Mommers in a trailer in Schenectady after her loving stepfather (Dwight) and two half sisters move to an upstate community. Mommers has lost custody of her other two daughters due to neglect. Mommers goes through cycles of caring for Addie with good intentions to several unacceptable periods of time where she is an absent neglectful parent.

Addie finds unconditional support and love from her stepfather, his family, and her caring neighbors. This is a story of a young girl who experiences extreme highs and lows and is just waiting for her life to be “normal”. It is a story of hope, determination and perseverance.

I would recommend this story for students in grades 5th, 6th and 7th. It is a realistic story with strong characters and a well-developed plot. This is a story that some students may relate to or know someone in a similar situation. I would also use this story for an opportunity for students to develop empathy for others.
" said.

"Normal as defined by 12 year old Addie is something or someone you can count on.

This is a heart breaking story of a spunky, loving child who is forced to take care of herself. As she notes, her mother is either all the way or not any way. It is an all or nothing lifestyle and too soon, at a very young age, Addie Schmeeter learned that increasingly the parenting style of her mother is nothing.

Having multiple children that she cannot raise, self centered and emotionally abusive, Addie's mother flies under the radar of the social services. When Dwight, Addie's step father, delivers her mother and her to a beat up camper/trailer, located in an underpass, Addie tries to make the best of a horrible situation.

Dwight loves Addie, but simply cannot legally take her with him and Addie's two step sisters. Moving away, Dwight worries about Addie and does the best he can to help her long distance. When Addie visits her step father and siblings, in her heart she longs for their normalcy.

Leaving Addie alone for nights, then weeks alone, with little or no food, her sociopathic mother cares little for her welfare. Afraid to let others know about her mother, Addie tries to make the best of a terrible situation.

It takes a dire situation to bring the social services on board.

While difficult to read, this is a book worth the time and effort. Unfortunately, all too many young children in our society are very much like Addie. Alone, afraid and living in dangerous situations, these children develop a strong coping mechanism to survive.

Five Stars
" said.

"When I first picked up this book, I felt a bit reluctant because the protagonist, Addie, is a little younger than I typically like to read, but I picked this book up soon after finishing So B. It by Sarah Weeks, which also had a young protagonist, so this sort of fit my mood. However, I think, regardless, I would have enjoyed Waiting For Normal.

Addie is a very likable character. She's not perfect, but she's strong and she tries hard. In some ways, she's mature for her age while at the same time she's still just a twelve-year-old girl who is striving for a normal life, which is made quite difficult by her undependable and irresponsible mother.

The story is scattered with several characters, who help Addie along - especially in her mother's absence, who helped enrich Addie's world. Throughout the book we from past behaviors and situations in Addie's life how and why "normal" never really seems to happen for her, and even as Addie's hopes for a different outcome - and already knows it won't happen - seeing it happen all over again is frustrating and disheartening as a reader, yet Addie's has a way of surviving.

I don't know if "enjoy" is exactly the word I'm looking for, but I liked the understated points of tension in the book. Rather than a bunch of scenes that could have been over the top, everything about the book felt true to real life. As sad as it is to think of real kids like Addie, I still like to see books take on real issues that aren't easy while at the same not turning it into an angst-ridden, sob story.
" said.


So, this book was seriously so cute.
As I was reading the book, I could easily feel how Addie was feeling.
Every scene was poignant and I loved every part of it.

(view spoiler)" said.

"It was such a heartwarming story! At first, I was pretty bored cause I'm in 9th grade and she's in 6th grade and our worlds are different, hers being more innocent. But as I kept on reading I realized I could not put it down. The first around 90 pages were a bit of a hassle, because it was still kind of explaining stuff, but after that I kept on wanting to know what was happening with her, her mother, her friends, her family, everything!

Warning, many spoilers ahead. Read at your own risk.

Last reminder, MANY, I repeat, MANY spoilers ahead. Well, I already warned you.

At some point during the story I started to hate the mother, but, let's face it, there is always one person who we will hate in a story. Her mother's behavior was sooooooo irritating! She forgot her daughter, multiple times, left her with just enough food, tried tricking her by giving her a lot on one day and then leaving the other with Pete, a man who, according to her, is not a family man. And then she ends up pregnant, without telling Pete about Addie (main character).

On the other hand, I loved Dwight, yet he was too passive and calm. There were times when the mother acted like a total b*tch around him (sorry for the word) as if he ruined everything when he was the one that tried the most. He was sweet and caring. He wasted his gasoline, which is not very cheap, to see Addie, who is not from his blood-family. And he even adopted her! I cried when that happened, I was so happy for them. Addie was finally heading back to normal, not much waiting to be done anymore.

I have to admit, though, that I was sad when the mother was separated from Addie. I mean, I would be completely heart broken if I was not allowed to see my mom, and not by personal choice. Yes, mothers are irritating, bothersome, and meddlesome, but they are also caring, loving, and thoughtful, even if it's just a little. I really did hope that Denise changed so she could at least visit her daughter. And also for her new daughter.

And Soula, oh loveable Soula. Why does cancer need to take the most thoughtful and cheerful people away? Why does it have to destroy our happy times? When I found out she died and when I read Addie's reaction, tears started to fall, and not just one or two, I actually needed to close the book for some seconds before continuing because my sight was blurry (this is a really rare reaction in me cause I usually just get teary-eyed or let one or two tears drop, nothing else)

Okay, so to wrap it up, cause my writing mode is kicking in and I noticed I'm writing too much :P This book was sweet, heartwarming, innocent and the perfect book to read. It' was wonderful. I simply loved it. I loved everything, from beginning to end. You should seriously read it, that is, if you got till the end of my review and are actually reading this.
" said.

"این داستان هم تلخ و گزنده است و هم زیبا و صمیمی و جذاب. چیزی مثل زندگی. ماجرای دختری دوازده سیزده ساله به‌نام ادیسون که دنبال کردنِ خانواده و زندگی‌اش مثل عبور از جاده‌ای پرپیچ‌وخم است.
داستانِ ادی از جایی شروع می‌شود که با مادرش، مومرز، برای زندگی در یک کاراوان کوچکِ شش‌قدمی به نات‌استریت می‌آیند. محله‌ای که ادی تنها دختربچه‌ی آن‌جاست.
ادی انتظار دارد جلو کاراوان یک قطعه‌ی چمن‌کاری شده باشد با فرفره‌‌ای بزرگ و نرده‌های سفید و مجسمه‌‌هایی از آدم‌های کوتوله، ولی وقتی آن‌جا را می‌بیند جا می‌خورد. چطور؟ به‌جای چمن‌زار سبز و مجسمه‌های قشنگ فقط یک محوطه‌ی قیرگونی شده جلوی کاراوان است که در گرمای تابستان ورم می‌کند. معمولاً، انتظارهای ادی از زندگی معکوس می‌شود و شاید برای همین است که در ابتدای نوجوانی فقط آرزو دارد یک زندگی معمولی داشته باشد.
ادی با مادرش زندگی می‌کند. با مومرز. مومرز بچه خیلی دوست دارد، ولی بلد نیست از بچه‌هایش مراقبت کند. بچه‌ها؟ اوهوم. ادی دوتا خواهر ناتنی هم دارد؛ براینا و کیتی. بچه‌های دووایت. دووایت همسر دوّم مومرز است. مردی قوی که شخصیت باثباتی دارد و به دخترهایش احساس امنیت می‌دهد و مراقب آن‌هاست. شاید بپرسید چرا دووایت و دخترهایش با ادی و مومرز زندگی نمی‌کنند. برای این‌که مومرز هیچ شباهتی به دووایت ندارد و بی‌توجهی و بی‌مسئولیتی‌اش باعث شده که هم جان بچه‌هایش را به‌خطر بیندازد و هم کلی بدهی برای دووایت به‌بار آورد. سر همین ماجراها، دووایت و مومرز از هم جدا شده‌اند. براینا و کیتی پیش پدرشان مانده‌اند، ولی دووایت ازنظر قانونی سرپرستِ ادی نیست و ادی باید با مادرش زندگی کند. مومرز قول داده که برای دخترش مادر خوبی باشد، ولی... نمی‌تواند. او حالت‌های عجیب‌وغریبی دارد. گاهی سرخوش و شاد و گاهی غم‌زده و افسرده. به‌قول ادی همه یا هیچ!
مومرز آشپزی نمی‌کند و فقط دوست دارد تلویزیون تماشا کند و در اینترنت پرسه بزند و مدام از این شاخه به آن شاخه بپرد. به‌قول ادی، او کسی است که نمی‌داند چه کار کند و هیچ وقت مطمئن نیست و آخرش هم ملاقات او با یک دوست اینترنتی همه‌چیز را دوباره از این‌رو به آن‌رو می‌کند. بااین‌حال، ادی مادرش را دوست دارد و خیلی از خطاها و اشتباه‌های او را از چشم دیگران مخفی می‌کند و با ترس‌ها و تنهایی‌هایش کنار می‌آید. ادی دختری است که زود به همه‌چیز عادت می‌کند و عاشق این است که مادرش را به خنده بیندازد تا برای چند لحظه هم که شده زندگی‌‌اش طبیعی به‌نظر برسد.
آخ، ادی. ادی از آن دخترهایی است که خیلی‌زود آدم را عاشق خودشان می‌کنند. جدای مشکلات خانوادگی و آشفتگی و پریشانیِ مومرز، ادی با یک مسئله‌ی شخصی هم درگیر است. او در یادگیری کند است و خواندن کلمات و یا نت‌های موسیقی برایش سخت است. بااین‌حال، به‌خاطرِ خوش‌بینی و شجاعتش ازپسِ مسائل و مصائب زندگی‌اش برمی‌آید. ادی همیشه در پی شادمانی و خوش‌بختی است. برای همین، وقتی به محله‌ی جدید می‌آید مانند مادرش خودش را با تلویزیون و اینترنت سرگرم نمی‌کند. جلو محوطه‌ی کاراوان یک مینی‌سوپر کوچک است. مینی‌سوپر سولا و الیوت. ادی به سراغ هم‌سایه‌هایشان می‌رود و سعی می‌کند یکی‌یکی آن‌ها را بشناسد و در محل زندگی‌اش یک قهرمان پیدا ‌کند.
از الیوت و سولا گفتم. این زن و مرد از شخصیت‌های عزیز و دوست‌داشتنی این کتاب‌اند. الیوت یک دندان پرشده با طلا دارد و گوشواره‌ی حلقه‌ای کوچکی به گوش چپش آویزان است و سولا شبیه عروسک پلاستیکی خیلی بزرگی است که لباس گل‌دار مهمانی تنش باشد. او شخصیتِ انعطاف‌پذیر و امیدواری دارد و حتا سرطان هم نتوانسته شور زندگی را ازش بگیرد. سرطان؟ اوهوم. سولا سرطان پستان دارد.
دوستی با الیوت و سولا به ادی یاد می‌دهد تا با تمرین کردن در هر کاری مهارت پیدا کند و اجازه ندهد اشتباه‌های کوچک مانع تحقق آرزوهایش شود. بله، همیشه باید ادامه داد. ما همه اشتباه می‌کنیم، ولی باید از دروازه‌ها و پل‌ها گذشت. همیشه دنیای جالب و بهتری پشت درها و پل‌ها هست.
سولا به ادی یاد می‌دهد که قوی و شجاع باشد و با خطر روبرو شود و به او می‌گوید قهرمان کسی است که خودش را به‌خاطر دیگران به خطر می‌اندازد. هر کسی برای دیگری قهرمان است و ما همه قهرمان داریم، وگرنه زندگی ترسناک می‌شد. من عاشق سولای تپل و نازنین‌ و این حرف‌هایش شده‌ام.

خلاصه، کتاب برای نوجوانان منتشر شده، ولی به‌نظر من از آن رمان‌هایی است که باید خواندنش را به همه‌ی دوازده تا صدودوازده ساله‌ها پیشنهاد کرد.
مطمئنم کسی از خواندنِ ماجرای زندگی ادی پشیمان نمی‌شود.
" said.

"Stellar middle grade novel that focuses on the reality of having a mother with bipolar disorder. This book reveals an essential truth: Even kids in deplorable family situations can navigate their trailer-park lives, steering them into something better. Even those kids can blossom into people with inner strength and character, despite those traits not being available in their gene pool. Addie lives, and thrives, in these pages as proof of that truth. The choices she makes, and the reasons she has to make them, will break readers' hearts. Meanwhile, Addie will pick herself up, dust off the remains, and persevere with her head held high. Along the way, she'll make friends, provide loving care for a pet, and maintain empathy for her mentally ill mother.
" said.

" این کتاب رو خیلی دوست داشتم. خوندنش رو بهتون پیشنهاد می کنم. گاهی کتاب های کودک و نوجوان فقط مختص کودک و نوجوان نیستند. " said.

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