Synopses & Reviews
Addie is waiting for normal.
But Addie's mom has an all-or-nothing approach to life: a food fiesta or an empty pantry, jubilation or gloom, her way or no way.
All or nothing never adds up to normal.
All or nothing can't bring you all to home, which is exactly where Addie longs to be, with her half sisters, every day.
In spite of life's twists and turns, Addie remains optimistic. Someday, maybe, she'll find normal.
Leslie Connor has created an inspiring novel about one girl's giant spirit. waiting for normal is a heartwarming gem.
"Connor (Dead on Town Line) treats the subject of child neglect with honesty and grace in this poignant story. Addie's stepfather, Dwight, has always been the responsible one in the family. But after he and her mother divorce, and he gets custody of Addie's two younger half-sisters, it's up to Addie, a sixth-grader, to keep order in the tiny trailer that Dwight has found for Addie and her mother. While her mother disappears for days at a time with her new boyfriend, Addie cultivates friendships with people she meets at a neighboring convenience store, but the affection she receives from others doesn't compensate for the absence of love in her home. Addie works hard to fill the void her volatile mother creates, and Addie's attempts to make things 'normal' result in some of the most moving scenes: she keeps the cabinets full by putting empty boxes of food on the shelf 'for show.' In such moments Connor shows both the extent to which Addie has been abandoned and just how resilient and resourceful she is. Characters as persuasively optimistic as Addie are rare, and readers will gravitate to her. Ages 10-up." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
*“This book persuades that good people and delighful possibilities are all around, even in the most unpromising circumstances.” KLIATT
“A heroine with spunk and spirit offers an inspiring lesson in perseverance and hope. First-rate.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“[Leslie] Connor treats the subject of child neglect with honesty and grace in this poignant story. Characters as persuasively optimistic as Addie are rare, and readers will gravitate to her.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“A story centered around loss, heartbreak, abandonment, and new beginnings.” School Library Journal (starred review)
“Connor convincingly portrays Addies beyond-her-years resourcefulness and the opposing feelings that drive her to protect the life she has while longing to be a permanent part of the ‘normal home her sisters occupy with her stepfather.” The Horn Book
About the Author
Leslie Connor has her own memories of the energy crunch of the seventies, and she got to thinking: What comes after the long lines at the pumps? What if the earth's supply of gasoline were to finally run out? She tried to imagine what it would look like: "I saw bicycles. And I saw them taking to the highways. I also saw a changing value of goods and services. Then Dewey showed up on my shoulder to tell the story of these kids home alone, trying to keep up with operating a busy bike-repair shop and coping with the unfamiliar condition of suddenly having something everybody else wants." Leslie is the author of many award-winning books for children, including Waiting for Normal, winner of the ALA Schneider Family Book Award, Miss Bridie Chose a Shovel, and Dead on Town Line, a young-adult novel in verse. She lives with her family in Connecticut.