Release Date: February 25, 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, YA
Source: Received in exchange for review
Goodreads | Purchase
An edgy, realistic, and utterly captivating novel from an exciting new voice in teen fiction.
Alexi Littrell hasn't told anyone what happened to her over the summer. Ashamed and embarrassed, she hides in her closet and compulsively scratches the back of her neck, trying to make the outside hurt more than the inside does.
When Bodee Lennox, the quiet and awkward boy next door, comes to live with the Littrells, Alexi discovers an unlikely friend in "the Kool-Aid Kid," who has secrets of his own. As they lean on each other for support, Alexi gives him the strength to deal with his past, and Bodee helps her find the courage to finally face the truth.
A searing, poignant book, Faking Normal is the extraordinary debut novel from an exciting new author-Courtney C. Stevens.
Faking Normal is a sensitive, sad and hopeful novel. It deals with heavy topics, but the main focus was what Alexi – our main character – was dealing with. Since the synopsis doesn’t say what exactly this was, I will consider it a spoiler and warn you whenever I’ll talk about it! While I knew from the beginning what it was, I wouldn’t want to spoil anyone.
The thing I loved most about Faking Normal was the way it handled rape. It’s a sensitive and important subject, and I felt it was handled really well. In the real world, opinions on this subject differ, and Stevens reflected this in Faking Normal. A lot of different opinions are voiced in the book, but in the end, Stevens stresses how it is never the victim’s fault. In the end, nearly all characters support Alexi. Some characters did make comments that made me angry, but the novel focuses very much on how it wasn’t Alexi’s fault, no matter what others might say.
END OF SPOILERS.
Most characters in Faking Normal were well developed. Especially Alexi and Bodee were complex characters with both their faults. They both have major problems and they help each other get through it. In the end, though, they never ‘solved’ their problems for each other, but for themselves. Alexi was obviously troubled and I thought the way she dealt with things was believable (and also a little heartbreaking). Then there’s Bodee, who’s got to be one of the sweetest characters I’ve ever read about. He’s silent –very silent- but he’s also honest and strong and always there for Alexi. He has his problems too, but he mostly hides them from the world and focusses on helping Alexi. I absolutely loved him.
Then there’s Captain Lyric. Can I just say that what happened there is one of the most romantic things ever? Every day, a mystery guy -Captain Lyric- prints lyrics on Alexi’s desk and she responds with the next lines, and then she leaves him a new one. That’s just… Swoon. I loved it. Like I said, extremely romantic. As for who CL is… I had strong suspicions in the beginning, but then this book totally lead me on the wrong path.
While we’re on that topic, the romance was very sweet. It’s slowly build up (no trace of instant love here, oh no) and it was just… sweet. That’s really the only word I have for it. I might not have been shipping them with all that I have, but I was happy with the way things went. They truly complemented each other and I think that they were a great couple. Their romance was build on trust and mutual respect, and I’m very happy with that. This is one of those couples that I can still imagine together in the future.
I really don’t have much to say about Faking Normal. It’s most certainly a good book. Faking Normal is an intricate story of two broken persons trying to heal. I loved its stance on a certain topics and I think that in the end, everything was beautifully done.
~Thank you HarperTeen for sending me this copy!~
Latest posts by Celine (see all)
- Review: This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner - January 18, 2016
- Celine’s 2015 End of Year Survey - December 31, 2015
- Review: Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy - September 7, 2015
- That Time I Reread the Entire Daughter of Smoke and Bone Series - August 26, 2015