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How to Be a Normal Person

(How to Be #1)

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  4,178 ratings  ·  906 reviews
Gustavo Tiberius is not normal. He knows this. Everyone in his small town of Abby, Oregon, knows this. He reads encyclopedias every night before bed. He has a pet ferret called Harry S. Truman. He owns a video rental store that no one goes to. His closest friends are a lady named Lottie with drag queen hair and a trio of elderly Vespa riders known as the We Three Queens.

ebook, 290 pages
Published October 16th 2015 by Dreamspinner Press
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Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
***Killer $0.99 deal right now at Amazon US! 3/14/19!***

For my review of the audiobook from 2019, please click here.


*4.5 stars*

Woah, where do I begin with this one?? An asexual stoner, a socially awkward video-store owner, and three lesbians/possibly sisters walk into a bar....

For those readers who are afraid that this book isn't a classic T.J. Klune book (aka, really, really funny with lots of feelz), never fear! T.
May 16, 2015 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: mine
Updated 4/15/16: How to Be a Normal Person just released as an audiobook narrated by Derrick McClain!

Fun fact:

Authors, like parents, will sometimes tell you they could never choose a favorite. We love all our works equally and for different reasons.

Authors, like parents, can be liars.

There is ALWAYS a favorite.

Oh, I love the books I've put out, for the most part. For different reasons.

However, I do have a favorite.

How to be a Normal Person is my favorite.

☆ Todd
Aug 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing

Okay, I'm at a loss. How am I supposed to review TJ Klune's latest book, "How To Be a Normal Person"?

Yes, it was insanely good, but it was also a lot like it's main character, Gustavo Tiberius. That is to say, "weird and abnormal and strange," compared to my usual reads.

When I heard his next book was an asexual, stoner hipster comedy, my first and only real thought was, "Uhhh..." <-- Yes, eloquent, I know.

Then TJ gifted me with a galley copy of the book pre-release and I (lost my mother

If you ask me where I stand with this book, my answer would be:


Yep, alone in an island with this one. I'm going to keep this real short because I don't want to break more hearts by justifying my one-star rating.

The story: Not normal guy meets hipster guy. Hipster guy thinks not normal guy is strange and weird and well, not normal. Not normal guy decides to try to be normal to woo hipster guy. In the end, not normal guy concludes that he can just be totally not normal and still get said hipster g

Sep 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thanks for the recommendation, Britt. Of course, I never check my recommendations and there are literally hundreds of them, but I noticed when I came to review this it said you had recommended it, so here we are. Thanks! :)

Okay, down to business. TJ Klune is fucking awesome. I need him in my brain more so I will read everything he has ever written. I might need to do some super-sleuthing and find some of his old school essays soon because I'm getting down to his last series soon.

Oh, I was going
Oct 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing


Derrick Maclain killed it in this narration. I wasn't sure if he could master the quirkiness of Gustavo, but he was SO GREAT. None of the charm was lost. Highly recommended!


Dear book...I love you.


I've almost forgotten what it felt like to love a book so much that you want to yell it from the mountaintops, talk about it ALL the time, and fumble through a review trying to put into words WHY it meant so much to you. It's been awhile since I've
* A Reader Obsessed *
4 Stars!!

As always, I’m late to the Klune party, but I enjoyed this no less than everyone else.

I just have to say that I totally connected with Gus. He’s my kindred spirit, my spirit animal, my brother from another mother. Seriously, I could relate to this guy so much - introverted grumpy reserved - so very very droll, and I loved pretty much everything about his neurotic self.

Make no mistake, Casey’s no slouch either! His stoner persona imbued a Keanu-esque vibe that I fell hard for, and he wa
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
For my original review of the ebook from 2015, please click here.


2015 ebook rating: 4.5 stars
2019 audiobook rating: 5 stars

Wow, more books should be written about asexual stoners, amirite?

I really enjoyed How To Be A Normal Person when I read it ~3.5 years ago, but I loved it on reread. First of all, Derrick McClain just smashed the narration out of the park, which made it an absolute joy to listen to. I wasn't sure about his narration in the first hour,
BWT (Belen)
ETA 4/15/2016. Now available on Audio!!!


This. This was...awesome and fantastic and wonderful and heartwarming and touching and sad and funny and just...I want to fangirl all over this so hard. But in a totally not gross way.


Gustavo Tiberius is not normal. After his father, Pastor Tommy dies, Gus settles into his daily routine. It's very much a wash, rinse, repeat kind of life until the day he and his ferret, Harry S. Truman, walk into Lottie's Lattes and h
 photo 9uC8bIWT3aNA_zpsgyr0oidu.gif

I don't even know how to start. This book made my heart and spirit so incredibly happy. How To Be A Normal Person is about Gustavo Tiberius. He is snarky and bitchy and contains one of the biggest hearts. You see as much as he acts like he gets annoyed by everyone and everything he accepts everyone as they are. One day everything is thrown out of wack when a stoner hipster named Casey comes to town.

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This book is everything we've come to love and expect from Klune:
*It's a character driven story

This was an OTT, crazy, nonsensical clean-romance book. The Eyebrows of Judgment say YES!

“God, you are abnormal and weird and strange and that's awesome.”

The first time I tasted one of Klune’s humorous books I DNFed it. I feared the same would happen with his one. This author can make me laugh (hard) and can make me ansty (a lot), too.

I felt I had landed in an alien place.

Well, the cover should have told me something.

I mean, it was bizarre as hell. Surrealist. Childish, even.

Like a Wes
Kat, short for Clara
I played Stoner Scrabble. While eating cookies. And hypothetical pizza.
#Stoned #IWon #Munchies #IHaveBakedBeansPTSD #HipstersAreUghhhh #IAlsoHateMichaelBay #AndEdSheeran #KrankyKat #LOLOLOLOLOL #YOLO

#Fin #TakesABow #LatersTaters
4.5 Stars

Klune’s stories define what it means to me to experience pure entertainment through my reading. His stories have it all, mixing side-splitting humour with quirky yet heartwarming examples of family, friendship and love, all held together with next-level writing skills and well-paced storytelling that will likely leave you smiling for days.

Following an atypical romance between small-town grump Gustavo Tiberius and new-to-town asexual hipster Casey, How to Be a Normal Person is in the sam
T.J. Klune's Bear, Otter, and the Kid is the book that brought me into the wonderful world of gay romance and it's books like How to Be a Normal Person that make me glad I haven't strayed. This book has so much of the heart, humor and love that I expect from T.J. without being over the top. For me this was classic T.J. Klune and I ate it up.

Gustavo Tiberius (if it sounds familiar it was the name of the star of one of Bear's rants in The Art of Breathing) is a creature of habit, with resting bitc
Nov 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Reread Feb 2019
Not that I loved the characters less, or that I don’t adore TJ anymore, but I was clearly not in the right frame of mind for this. Wanted to remind myself of everyone before I embark on How to be a Moviestar, but will postpone reading book 2 for a wee while now.

Original review:

Wow, TJ. This was bl***y amazing.

What kind of genius mind can come up with characters like Gus and Casey?
And makes them real and lovable and wonderful, and oh so huggable. (Triple sigh)
And have you snort w
Feb 16, 2017 rated it really liked it

I went into this one completely blind. I hadn’t read a review. I didn’t even read the blurb. A good friend had recommended it to me and I decided to give it a go.

This is only my second book by TJ Klune and I’m finding that I really enjoy his writing. I look forward to reading more from him. The other book that I read and LOVED was WOLFSONG. If you are a fan of TJK then I am sure you have read it and if not, do yourself a favor and read it. You are missing out on a wonderful story. IMHO!

What I l
4 Hearts!

I've said it before and I'll say it again, not being able to add quotes from an audiobook sucks. This book was full of amazing one liners and tons of quality banter! Not to mention characters that will stick with you long after you’ve finished listening.

Because this is an audiobook review I’m not going to delve too much into the storyline. I mainly want to talk about the incredible narration of Derrick McClain. At first I wasn’t to sure of the story. It's definitely not what you’d cal
***5+ stars because of pure awesomeness***

I probably never laughed so much and so hard about a book in my whole life.

This was my first BR and there is no better way to start with it than reading this book with my lovely superhero buddies Batgirl, Wonder Woman and Supergirl, aka Karen, Josy and Christelle!

It just doubled the fun. No, sorry, I should say it quadrupled the fun!!!

How to Be a Normal Person was my second book by TJ Klune and at first I was reluctant to read it. I somehow doubte
Oct 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Reread - Aug 20 .... still adorable, hilarious and brilliant ... Gus & Casey are perfect - pure awesomeness that had me laughing even when I stopped reading ....
This was without doubt one of the funniest books I have read this year. I adored Gus & his ferret with merit and his blossoming friendship and relationship with Casey the asexual hipster stoner. The supporting cast of biker ladies - We Three Queens and Lottie made this even more funny. This was an M/M with no sex and yet the romance was
I've been waiting on this book for a while. I eat up anything from TJ. I adore his writing!

So imagine my surprise when I found out one of the MC's was an asexual stoner hipster...

And then I get the ARC??!! Happy dance time!! I was NOT disappointed.

This is the tale of Gustavo Tiberius (Ring any bells? BOATK3) and Casey Richards. Gustavo's only living relative, Pastor Tommy, his dad, passed away a few years ago. He owns several buildings in a smallish town and works in a video rental store. He liv
Feb 01, 2016 rated it it was ok
I really hate doing this. I am DNF-ing at 30%.

Thank you, Kira, for giving me courage to come out. Here we go: TJ Klune, unfortunately, is not for me. His writing style simply does not agree with me.

One other issue.
Although there are funny bits in this book, it leaves me horrified.

Gus, obviously, has issues, where "socially awkward" just doesn't cut it. It sounds more like he has "...significant difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication, alongside restricted and repetitive

OMFG!!! This was EPIC! I'll review when I have some words, but right now I only urge you all to preorder and read the fuck out of this when it's available. Don't fucking wait. This may be the best book Tj has ever written. It's absolutely fabulous. Love the humor, love the snark, love the sweet moments. Love everything about it.

Full review with all the feelz to come in October. But seriously, go pre-order soon as soon as you can. It's fab!
Aug 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
re-read July 2018


Another awesome BR with my girls Karen, Christelle, and Simone at a time when I needed a good laugh more than anything else. Thank you so much for making me forget RL for a few hours!

This was my third read and I loved it as much as the first two times!

Original review:
Nov 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
'How to be an Normal Person' and falling in love. Oh yeah also another AWESOMESACE Buddy Read with Supergirl otherwise knows as Christelle, Wonder Woman also referred to as Josy and our newest buddy read bestie Hawkgirl more commonly known as Simone and me occasionally recognized as Batgirl or Karen.

Of all our Buddy Reads 'How to be a Normal Person' was by far the funniest and the most touching. I'm giving this one 5 stars because that's all that I have available. There are so many wonderful r
 ♥ Rebecca ♥
I'm actually a bit embarrassed that I didn't enjoy this the first time I read it 🙈 and I deleted my original review. I didn't realize how much I had changed or how much I had discovered about myself as a person since 2015.

I decided to reread this before How to Be a Movie Star because I couldn't remember who Josiah was, and although I didn't enjoy this one much the first time around, I have loved everything else by TJ Klune. And now I love this one too.

This book was just so magical and wonderfu
Tink Magoo is bad at reviews


My mind and heart and everything is goo. Good goo, not disgusting what the fuck is that goo. I just loved these characters, all of them. And it was so funny. So funny. And my feelings. Ah boy, the romance and Gus's Dad. The 3 old ladies. But, wait a second - what is the answer to the question at the end?! PLEASE TELL ME, damn you TJ!
Tara♥ {MindforBooks}
"Even if said hipster does Instagram every thing he eats. Like an asshole."

I am ridiculously excited about this. That blurb sounds awesome and I'm currently on a T.J. high!!
Dec 29, 2015 marked it as dnf
Shelves: mm
DNF at 45%

Not the book for me. Yes, it is funny, yes I did laugh. But I want more than a friendship, I want to read about a romance.

This is totally my own fault because I had a feeling I wouldn’t like it.
Oct 24, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mm

This book is a textual embodiment of Zooey Deschanel.


It's all quirky and awkward and witty and childish and full of colors and adorkable and if all that makes you feel the urge to punch something it's because you are awful, evil person and you should be ashamed. :pout:

This is not an actually criticism since there are many people who love Zooey and her work, just as there are going to be readers who will love this book. This is simply not me: it's not that I have to be in the mood, in special sta
This was one of the funniest BRs I ever had! Thank you, my sweet twin monster! I enjoyed this immensely!

Okay, this was honestly one of the best books I have ever had the pleasure to read! There wasn't one thing I didn’t love. I highlighted almost the whole book, it has been so great. I was planning on using some quotes in my review but I can't decide on only a few and I was afraid I would end up writing down the whole book.

The MCs, Gus Tiberius and Casey Richards, were super cute and ado
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TJ KLUNE is a Lambda Literary Award-winning author (Into This River I Drown) and an ex-claims examiner for an insurance company. His novels include The House in the Cerulean Sea and The Extraordinaries. Being queer himself, TJ believes it's important—now more than ever—to have accurate, positive, queer representation in stories.

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How to Be (2 books)
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