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Waiting for Normal

by Leslie Connor

Published by Katherine Tegen Books / HarperCollins, 2008
290 pages
ISBN: 9780060890889

Ages 10-14

For twelve-year-old Addie, life is never stable for very long. When she and her mother move into a mobile home on the corner of a run-down lot next to a train overpass, it doesn’t exactly seem like the fresh new start it’s supposed to be. But it’s the best her former stepfather can offer after his breakup with Addie’s mom. It soon becomes clear that Addie might have been better off with her stepdad Dwight than with her biological mother. Mommers, as Addie calls her, is an “all-or-nothing” person. Sometimes she’s high on life, joking with Addie and feeling positive about money-making opportunities. Other times she’s angry with the world and unable to care for Addie, much less herself. Meanwhile Addie is desperate to hold things together in the hope that something better is just around the corner. When Mommers gets involved in a doubtful business venture and disappears for days at time, Addie struggles to feed and clothe herself on her own. Luckily for Addie, there are people looking out for her—her caring stepdad, the convenience store owners on the corner, and her distant paternal grandfather. While the resolution almost seems better than Addie could have wished for, it’s a fitting conclusion for a young girl yearning for stability and unconditional love.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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