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Waiting for Normal

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  7,788 ratings  ·  991 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 optimisti
ebook, 320 pages
Published March 17th 2009 by Katherine Tegen Books (first published January 1st 2008)
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Once in a while a reviewer of children’s books likes to sit down and reassess their occupation. Here I am. I am an adult and I review books for kids. And most of the time I really enjoy it. I just have a fabulous time reading all these children’s books and then spouting off opinions about why you should or shouldn’t hand 'em off to the youngsters. But in the end I am still an adult and my opinion is that of someone over the age of 25. A lot of people in my position have a hard time separating th ...more
Claire Scott
I've been hearing great things about this book, so perhaps my hopes were too high. This book irked me in the same way as The Higher Power of Lucky did: cutesy, too-good-to-be-true, innocent kids in hard-knock lives just drive me nuts. Addie is on the brink of puberty, has severe dyslexia, and lives with her unmedicated, bipolar mom in a trailer in a grim corner of Schenectady; her two little sisters and loving stepdad have started a new life in the country, but her mom has custody of Addie. But ...more
It was refreshing to read Addie's story. Too many protagonist her age seem.... I don't know unlikable, but Addie is different.

First of all I should say that I liked Addie to pieces. I could only wish I could have been good of a kid as she is.

Addie always seem to be walking on eggshells (even though she doesn't know it at first). Her mom (which she calls Mommers) is an all or nothing person, which bring the both of them lots of problems. At the beginning of the book we see her and her mom movin
Marika Gillis
This little gem of a novel will tug at your heartstrings. Twelve-year-old Addie lives in a trailer in Schenectady, NY and her family is "hard to follow- like a road that keeps taking twists and turns." Addie's mother divorced Addie's ex-stepfather, Dwight, two years earlier and Dwight has custody of Addie's two half sisters. Addie's real father died when she was young and her dad's dad, Grandio, lives nearby. (Sound like a modern day family or what?) Since Addie is not Dwight's birth child, she ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Addie is a wonderful character. She's sweet, gregarious and funny, the bright star in what was a somewhat predictable but enjoyable book. Yes, I think anybody could probably predict the last ten pages of the book by reading the first ten, but the journey there is fun. The setting is cool - a tiny sixth-grader sized trailer across the street from a convenience store manned by adults who actually have a sense of humor - and the characters are... well, I guess gentle is the word I want to use here. ...more
This story was very cute and very positive. Addy has a ridiculous amount of positive energy and a great attitude about her tough life. The writing is fairly tight (amid some weak editing), and the story line itself does not have holes I have found in so many other YA books recently. Although I am not necessarily a huge fan of a happy story with a "happily ever after" ending, this story doesn't necessarily end happily ever after, but, it ends with a positive note. This book will definitely appeal ...more
This is a copy, with the HTML restored as much as possible, of my A Fuse #8 Production, which is well worth reading. I have only two things I'd love to chat about with Fuse: one is the description of Addie's mother as a 'selfish, self-centered nutjob'. I know what she means, but still. The other is a slight spoiler, so stop now if you don't want to read it. I doubt it'll be a huge surprise, though you may hope against hope, as I did, that it wouldn't happen. The pet doesn't get it, which is deli ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by The Compulsive Reader for

Addie has never had a normal life.

It's an impossible feat when she lives with a woman like her mother, who is either extremely happy or extremely sad. They either have what they need to survive, or they don't. But Addie tries to not let these extremes get to her too much. She still dreams of a place where everything's normal and she has a safe home.

Now if only she can hold on to that dream.

Connor's wonderfully poignant and eye-opening nove
I listened to this book on audio and the recording was excellent. Addie keeps waiting for her family to return to "normal" but the reader realizes quickly that this is unlikely to happen. After her mother and stepfather divorce, Addie's little sisters go with Dwight while she and her mother set up housekeeping in a beatup trailer across from the minimart. Addie's mom is "all or nothing" and after she finds a new boyfriend the "nothing" means that she leaves 12 year-old Addie on her own for days ...more
Maddie Adolph
Waiting For Normal
Leslie Connor
Waiting For Normal is about a twelve year old girl named Addie Schmeeter. Addie's life has been a roller coster for the past couple of years with many ups and downs, not only did her dad pass away when she was three, but now her step father, Dwight and her bipolar mother, Mommers are getting a divorce and Mommers insists on Dwight leaving the house. Her mom being bipolar, leaves for a couple of days leaving Addie and her two other sisters alone without notice, once
IndyPL Kids Book Blog
Sixth grader Addison had a taste of “normal” while her mother and step-father Dwight were married. She even had two younger half sisters to share her life with. But after the divorce, Dwight got custody of her two half sisters and Addie began a new and different life with “Mommers”.

Addie’s mom sleeps most of the day and then leaves Addie alone at night to “go out” or follow her “business interests” with a new boyfriend. It isn’t that Mommers doesn’t love Addie, it’s that she doesn’t take care of
Linda Lipko
Normal as defined by 12 year old Addie is something or someone you can count on.

This is a heart breaking story of a spunky, loving child who is forced to take care of herself. As she notes, her mother is either all the way or not any way. It is an all or nothing lifestyle and too soon, at a very young age, Addie Schmeeter learned that increasingly the parenting style of her mother is nothing.

Having multiple children that she cannot raise, self centered and emotionally abusive, Addie's mother fli
This is a story that will tug on your heartstrings. It is a tale that deals with many heartrending and (unfortunatly) current issues; dysfunctional families, neglect, learning disabilities, mental illness, death/cancer, homosexuality, and puberty. But they are dealt with in such a way that you don't come away feeling depressed. Twelve year old Addie doesn't even realize how bad she has it, she just deals with her life in the amazing way children have of adapting/compensating to less than ideal s ...more
Brooke Shirts
A sweet story of enduring hardships and crazy family with endless optimism. Little Addie has apparently hit bottom: her flake's-flake of a mother lost everything in the divorce except Addie. They now live in a junky trailer underneath a train overpass in Schnectady. Mommers surfs the Web all day, relies on Addie for cooking and cleaning, and takes off whenever she feels like it. Addie misses her responsible, loving ex-stepfather and his two daughters. Will Addie be able to find "normal" again?

It's another one of those bittersweet coming-of-age books for tweens/early-teens that makes your heart ache. Addie is a smart and extremely optimistic 12-year-old girl, but she's stuck in an awful situation, and she's not yet old enough to direct her feelings of abandonment and frustration towards her grossly-neglectful (and clearly bipolar) mother. Addie's such a sweet and positive protagonist, making friends wherever she goes and always making the best of her situation, whether it's being left ...more
N_patricia Brunner
Waiting for Normal is an inspiring contemporary realistic fiction novel about a twelve-year-old female who is neglected by their mother and seeks support from her stepfather and other caring adults within her community. I listened to the audio version of this book in NON-PRINT. The young protagonist narrates the story and the audio enhances and helps to develop the characters and the plot.

Addie is the young protagonist who lives with Mommers in a trailer in Schenectady after her loving stepfath
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Waiting for Normal is such a amazing book! It was really interesting. I have picked this book up before. Because the cover looked really familiar. But never actually read it. While I was at the Library I needed something to read. I was not sure how this book was going to be. But it was really good.

The main character is Addie. Addie lives with her mom. Her mom is an "all or nothing" kind of lady. She will leave for days at a time leaving Addie to fend for herself. She calls her mom, Mommers. Momm
It was such a heartwarming story! At first, I was pretty bored cause I'm in 9th grade and she's in 6th grade and our worlds are different, hers being more innocent. But as I kept on reading I realized I could not put it down. The first around 90 pages were a bit of a hassle, because it was still kind of explaining stuff, but after that I kept on wanting to know what was happening with her, her mother, her friends, her family, everything!

Whew! Made it through without throwing my iPod through the windshield after hearing the word "Mommers" for the 89th time. Didn't think the iPod would survive this audiobook.

That said, I liked this audiobook, it's just that "Mommers" was making me insane. My main gripe about the recording was that the narrator made Addie's voice sound too young for a 12-year-old. Just my opinion. Now on to the story itself....

Addie was quite likeable, but I wanted her to stand up for herself more. I wanted her to
April Hochstrasser
Addie and her mother move to a little trailer on a busy city corner. The mother apparently has bi-polar disorder and often leaves Addie alone for days on end.

Addie is unaware of how great a kid she is and that things are not her fault. She just tries to do her best. I was sad when she replaced the macaroni and cheese with thumb tacks, so that if grandpa came by and looked in her cupboards, it would look like whe had some food. In a way, she enables her mother, but she is only 11. She befriends
On the good side, she kept me reading til the end. For a long while I was thinking it was a good book, but as I neared the end and started thinking about things, I became quite bothered by it. Then when I did finish, I was disappointed. The book is quite a bit more political than it first comes across, though I'd have to write a whole paper to explain what I mean. In any case, she has her ideas about normal that she's trying to get across, other than what she states, it seems to me. Anyway, the ...more
Addie is patiently waiting for a normal life, not all the twists and turns she gets as she lives with her mom. Life was so much better with her stepfather Dwight and the littles; her sisters, Brynna and Katie but Mommers wouldn't allow Addie to stay with them. As part of the divorce, Dwight settles Mommers and Addie in his trailer (which Mommers hates!!!) but Addie makes friends with Elliot and Soulah at the MiniMart and settles in at school. Mommers settles in to watch a judge judy type show al ...more
This is a book I would like my daughter to read because of the strength of its character Addie, who deals with the difficulties of her life without self-pity and who continues to love her (probably) bipolar mother in spite of her bad treatment at her hands.

She is "waiting" for a reasonable home life and show a tremendous amount of patience--maybe more than is realistic?--in doing so. The secondary characters are very nicely formed, and the book was engaging to read, even for a grown up who cares
Kathleen Lake cusick
This story will touch your heart, as Addie, an insightful child that has the benefit of a few good influences in her life, waits for something other than what she has now, something more "normal". Though she remembers very little about her father after his death when she was 3, she and her mom find temporary happiness with Dwight, only to lose it again, which leaves Addie longing for the step-dad and half sisters she feels she can't live without. This story will leave you rooting for the optimis ...more
This book made me want to gather up all the kids I know and give them a big hug. It's a glimpse into a 12 year old girl's life, who lives with a, seemingly untreated bipolar, mother.
She seems very mature for a 12 year old, but I guess you would be going through the things she has gone through.
I like that the author seems to be able to tell this sad story in a very matter of fact way. The way I imagine people in that situation seem to feel. This is my life. This is how things are.
Luckily, she
I really likes this novel. It opens with Addie and her manic mother moving to a little lot with a trailer plopped on it. Addie kind of likes the small space and the unusual neighbors in the mini mart next door. Her mother chafes at everything about her life and disappears into internet chat rooms leaving Addie on her own, truly, waiting for normal.
With help from Addie's step dad, and the mini mart Addie makes her way day to day. Finally as her mother drifts farther and farther away from Addie cr
Apr 25, 2011 Heather rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Heather by: Willa
I don't think people actually use the word "plucky" anymore, but the protagonist in this book is plucky. I loved her. The author did a good job of presenting a heartbreaking situation with compassion while avoiding being maudlin and over-dramatic and then gave us a heroine who triumphs. Really, the book is full of great characters. And the title. I love that. Don't we all sometimes feel like we are waiting for normal? And then normal stuff happens even in the midst of the strange. I really liked ...more
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What did you think? 15 39 Mar 27, 2013 05:28PM  
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From the author's website:

My life began suddenly (you can even ask my mother) in an antique farmhouse outside of Cleveland, Ohio. I was born right on the family room floor ~ no time to get to the hospital! I swear, I’ve been in a hurry ever since.

When I was in fourth grade we moved to a neighborhood full of kids outside of Schenectady, New York. My Dad worked for a company that sold some of the fi
More about Leslie Connor...
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“In the morning I woke like a sloth in the fog.” 9 likes
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