“Everyone’s on the cliff edge of normal.”
Title: Am I Normal Yet?
Author: Holly Bourne
Publisher: Usborne Publishing
All Evie wants is to be normal. She’s almost off her meds and at a new college where no one knows her as the girl-who-went-crazy. She’s even going to parties and making friends. There’s only one thing left to tick off her list…
But relationships are messy – especially relationships with teenage guys. They can make any girl feel like they’re going mad. And if Evie can’t even tell her new friends Amber and Lottie the truth about herself, how will she cope when she falls in love?
I desperately wanted to love this book so much more. Not to say that I didn’t think it was a good book – I just found myself not loving it as much as I expected to.
Am I Normal Yet is a book told from the perspective of a girl who suffers from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and has just come back to school after being sectioned due to her OCD and anxiety getting to the point she hadn’t left her house for 8 weeks.
I’m a huge advocate for mental health and feminism in YA literature – and honestly if that was the only basis I was rating this book on it would have easily gotten 4.5 stars. Bourne completely eradicates the idea of romanticizing mental health in this book, and for once not everything gets completely better at the end. The representation of mental health is raw and at times extremely sad but ultimately realistic.
The feminist aspect of this book was another thing that made just that much more realistic. It was amusing to see Evie and friends learn and grow through their ‘Spinster Club’.
However, as much as I did enjoy those two aspects I unfortunately wasn’t as big of a fan of the writing. I found the fact that all of Evie’s direct thoughts were written in a different thought and in big letters really disrupting when reading and honestly didn’t see the point. I can understand that they were there to make it clearer that these were exactly what Evie was thinking but I think I could have figured that out myself – especially as it is in first person anyway.
I also found some of the characters predictable and stereotypical which wasn’t the best.
Otherwise, I honestly do think this is an important read and one that a lot more people should read. It conveys an extremely important message, and whether I liked the writing style or not doesn’t take that away. I can really appreciate what Holly Bourne has done in this book and it really has given me a different perspective to the way I view some things in my life.