Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Review: Faking Normal - Courtney C. Stevens

AuthorCourtney C. Stevens 
PublisherHarperTeen
Published Date: February 25th 2014 
Source: ARC Courtesy of The Publisher
Synopsis:

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.

My Thoughts

Every once in a while we come across a book that is mind-blowing-good and you love it so much that you can’t stop thinking about and can’t even talk about it for fear of incoherent rambling. 

Well, Faking Normal was this kinda book.

Faking Normal is contemporary done right. This poignant and powerful novel stands out among the recent young adult releases and is guaranteed to make you feel.

Courtney C. Steven’s weaves a moving story of two teenagers’ journey following the aftermath of a tragedy and their discovery of the power of love, hope and healing through forgiveness. 
“Me: A girl who was raped. Him: A boy whose dad killed his mom.Us: A girl and boy who survive.”
Alexi Littrell is an ordinary teenager who looks like she has pretty much everything together. But life is anything but normal for Alexi who’s dealing with aftermath of a betrayal and rape by someone she trusted. Bodee Lennox aka the Kool Aid Kid, is a survivor of domestic violence whose mother was murdered by his father. 

Steven’s breaks free of the ‘strong/badass female protagonist’ mould and gives us a heroine who’s utterly refreshing. Don’t get me wrong Alexi is strong. After all, she is survivor a sexual abuse and she is the one who helped Bodee to seek closure and testify at his father’s trial. However, she was also human - She knew she needed Bodee’s help in order to understand what truly happened and to forgive herself. Bodee was AMAZING, guys. He’s unlike any other male hero in YA. His sensitivity, wisdom and kindness will have you falling irrevocably in love with him. The romance was the best kind - sweet and slow. Watching Alexi and Bodee fall for each other was simply beautiful.

Faking Normal would not be same without Steven’s powerful writing. The captivating prose and mystery element make Faking Normal one hell of a compelling read.

Courtney C. Steven masterfully tackles the sensitive subject of rape and courageously challenges the common misconceptions in rape culture in this debut. Courtney C. Steven’s heartbreaking and heart-warming debut Faking Normal will without doubt leave a mark on readers.

MY FAVORITE LINE:
“There are no words to this music, and that makes me sad. Every song deserves lyrics. Deserves a story to tell.” 
AND THIS ONE: 
 “And more than that, Bodee left me with hope. For love. For wanting someone to touch me again and to lie with me without fear as my first response. Because Bodee slept in his sneakers, because Bodee asked for a kiss instead of just taking it, and because he kept space between us. He danced with two fingers until I asked for three or four... and his hand on my hip.I know we're both still broken. Both of us. But Bodee's got the glue to make us whole. He is love.” 
I SWEAR THIS IS THE LAST ONE:
 “But today is better than yesterday. And this hurt is still a hole in me, but it's a shrinking hole.” 
My Rating
Over to you now:

If you have read Faking Normal, share your thoughts with me!

Are there any similar books that YOU think I'd enjoy?

Channel you brave and pick this book up NOW! :)

8 comments :

  1. I haven't read this book, yet but I'm planning on reading it soon. I hope I'll like this as well. It has mixed reviews on GR tho.

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    1. You should definitely give this a go, Jules-Trust me, You'll love it! :)

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  2. I am incredibly picky with contemporary novels, and I'm always looking for one that can deal with hard issues but in a well-written narrative. This one sounds great, and something that would really make me think. Great review, Nuz! :)

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    1. It's an absolutely beautiful book that really tackles the subject of abuse. Faking Normal is the kind of books lingers in your mind even after you finish it so you should definitely read it, Ana. :)

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  3. Ohhh, I'm sold. I'm totally sold. I'm going to look up this book. I mean, I've heard of it a lot! But I get scared going after issue books because they can be quite hit-or-miss to see if the author really deals with the subject or just skims. But this?! This sounds SO good. :)
    Cait @ Notebook Sisters

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    1. Haha, I'm so glad to hear that my review was convincing enough - I promise Faking Normal will not disappoint! :)

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  4. You have increased my anticipation to read this book:)Can't wait to read Alexi's and Bodee's story.

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    1. So glad to hear that, Mishma - You should definitely give this a go! :)

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