Author: Trish Doller
Publish date: June 19, 2012
"When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother’s stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he’s haunted by nightmares of his best friend’s death. It’s not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he’s had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis’s dry sense of humor, and incredible sense of honor, make him an irresistible and eminently lovable hero." (Goodreads)
I don't often read books from Netgalley, but this one seemed too good to pass up. I quickly read it while on vacation this week and after finishing it, I found myself itching for another contemporary book. Only an excellent book will make me crave more of that same genre and Something Like Normal is no exception.
I really like that this story is told from a male character's POV. Travis is a funny and very REAL guy. He had his faults like we all do, which made him even better, and I was rooting for him the whole time. He deals with a lot after he gets back from Afghanistan and I think Trish Doller portrays that in a very realistic way. I liked that not everything was perfect when he came home.
I also love love LOVED the romance in this book. Harper is a fierce and independent girl whom I took an immediate liking to. I of course loved that there was no insta!love between the two, which makes the whole situation even more realistic. I've said before that in terms of YA, I am not a big contemp fan, but I really did love this one.
At a little over 200 pages, the length here is perfect and I will definitely be recommending this to my students come fall and will try to get a copy for my classroom library. My only wish is that there was a different cover--I think boys will like this one, but the cover will deter them.