Teen review – The New Normal By: Ashley Little


I hate when a book doesn’t get to the point.  You read the blurb on the back and it sounds so exciting, so great, and then it takes half the book to get to that aha! moment that drew you into reading the book in the first place.  The new normal is the opposite.  The opening sentence grabs you immediately, “I am losing my hair, I don’t know why.  I’m only sixteen”  Tamar Robinson’s back story is filled in for you in the first two pages.  She’s losing her hair and her twin sisters are dead “They died from riding in cars with boys. Stupid, drunken boys.”

Tamar’s parents are a complete mess, her dad sits at home in a fog while her mother hides from her grief by doing yoga 24/7, which leaves Tamar more alone than she ever thought possible, and wondering how you grieve the loss of sisters that weren’t all that likable to begin with?

Many parts of this book reminded me of The reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen, 
especially with it set in the suburbs of Calgary and the family dealing with the grief of losing a sibling, how do you define yourself as a family after something like this?

Tamar is incredibly likable, and laugh out loud funny. Trying to get through grade 11 in one piece.  There were a few loose ends that fell into place a little to nicely and abruptly at the end of the book in order to finish it up in the allotted pages, but for the most part this is a really great read from a new Canadian author.

age 14+


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