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Differently Normal

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  672 ratings  ·  150 reviews
Heartbreaking and heartwarming in equal measure, DIFFERENTLY NORMAL is about first love and the sacrifices you'll make for the ones you hold close. For fans of Nicholas Sparks and Jojo Moyes.

For Maddy, life is all about routine. It has to be, to keep her sister with autism happy and healthy. With just Maddy and her mother as Bee's full-time carers, there's no time in Maddy
Paperback, 344 pages
Published January 30th 2018 by Hachette New Zealand (first published 2018)
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Average rating 4.15  · 
Rating details
 ·  672 ratings  ·  150 reviews

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Dec 13, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is my seventh Tammy Robinson book and the first one that I havent really enjoyed. This read more YA to me and while I do enjoy YA I do need to be in the mood for it and as I wasnt expecting it to be YA it kind of threw me off.

I also dont get the title of this book, the title and blurb suggest you will be following an autistic character but actually she has a very minimal role in the book and you're following a hate to love romance between two youngsters of whom I have no idea of their ages
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Having read and loved a few books by this author, I was really looking forward to reading Differently Normal. Yet again, I’m pleased to announce this was another wonderfully emotional book by a very talented author.

This story started off quite funny and light hearted, with me giggling at a Santa Claus look-a-like and what he gets up to in his spare time, and moustache waxing, as my hubby has wax for his moustache and oil for his winter beard, and no, I’m not married to Santa Claus, before anyone
Tracy Fenton
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have been in a bit of a reading slump this month, my reading mojo went AWOL and every book I started felt a bit "meh". As April is also Autism Awareness Month and having previously read and enjoyed a couple of books by Tammy Robinson Differently Normal seemed the obvious book to read next.

Almost instantly I am transported into Bee, Maddy and Alberts world. The author brings these wonderful loveable and likeable characters to life and this beautifully written sensitive story about family, love,
Kate (beautifulbookland)
May 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-stars
So, this book is marketed for fans of The Fault in Our Stars, which is obviously a devastating book, so I have no idea why I managed to talk myself into believing that Differently Normal would have a warm and fuzzy ending. I was warned (it literally says on the front that it isn’t love unless it breaks your heart), but I’m clearly just a fool.

This is my first novel by Tammy Robinson, and it’s safe to say that I’m impressed. A book about a girl with an autistic sister and a boy with an abusive f
Tara Lyons
Apr 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I always worry my reviews will not do Tammy Robinson's books justice. I am a crime/thriller lover, but it's this author I always go to when I need a break. When I need something beautiful. When I need my heart to be filled with emotion.

She's done it again - Differently Normal is a story told with stunning imagery, honest characters and real emotion. I read it in two sittings (yes, that is fast for me) because the author drew me in and I was absorbed with the characters.

I loved the alternating
Rebecca If Only I Could Read Faster
If you have yet to read any books by Tammy Robinson then you really are missing out. Tammy writes incredibly emotive stories, with great characters that you can’t help but care about.

Differently Normal tells the story of Maddy, a teenager living with her mum and her sister Bee. Bee has autism and requires 24/7 care and it’s down to Maddy and her mum to provide it. For Maddy, juggling working and caring for her much loved sister leaves her little time for much else, she has been forced to grow up
Feb 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received a copy of this book from Hachette Australia in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are my own.

Differently Normal is a poignantly moving novel that left me a blubbering but smiling mess by the time I finished the last page - It is a book I didn’t know I needed in my life.

I should have known that this book was going to break my heart from the description on the cover “If it doesn’t break your heart, it isn’t first love” – however I couldn’t stop myself from hoping throughout th
Christine Owens
May 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it! The author writes so brilliantly you can't help but fall in love with the main characters Albert and Maddy. The dialogue between them is excellent and made me laugh out loud at some parts. This story takes you through a range of emotions sadness, happiness, anger, frustration and makes you laugh and cry. All I can say is make it your next read, you won't regret it.
Sue Clement
Apr 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another beautiful book from Tammy and yes more tears were shed. A wonderful story that follows a powerful love story between a young couple. Each with their own difficulties. Could not put this book down. The writing just pulls you deeper in and attaches you to the characters from page one. Simply delightful.
Stephanie (earlgreyreads)
Differently normal is a really sweet, yet heartbreaking love story. Since graduating, Maddie has had to turn down any thoughts of going to college in order to stay home and help her mother to look after her younger sister, Bee. Bee has autism and requires full time care. Between work at a photo print shop and watching her sister, Maddie and doesn't have time for friends or relationships. This all changes when she meets Albert. Albert works at the stable where Bee has riding lessons. Albert is de ...more
Fiona Wilson
Apr 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-reads, favorites
I am a huge fan of this author and her books. Having met the young lady this book is dedicated to, as well as her lovely mother, I couldn't wait to see how the author dealt with the subject matter. I can honestly say I was blown away with the sensitivity the author showed throughout the story, while also managing to provide a lot of humour.

The story itself is brilliantly done. The author has shown her ability to tell a good story many times in the past, but this one takes her storytelling to a w
Apr 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a delight this book was!I read it through in one sitting on a long journey & was really sorry to finish it.

The characters really leap out the page- or you leap into their world! Albert- a gentle soul with a domineering father, a downtrodden mother and a bullying brother, struggles to be his own man and follow his own path. That path takes him to working in a riding stable which also offers riding lessons for people with disabilities. It is there he meets Maddy, who had brought her sister B
Jackie Roche
Apr 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How I wish I could give more than 5 stars!
Tammy Robinson's books just keep getting better and better.
Since being introduced to Tammy's books by a friend, I have read , no devoured each one in a matter of hours. As soon as I start reading I am immediately transported to the location and know that I will meet characters that I will fall in love with.
I class myself as very lucky as I know the young lady that Bee is based on. She is exactly as portrayed in the book.
Reading this book will make you la
Stacey (Sassy Book Lovers)
I simply LOVED this book, I was hooked from start to finish.

A brilliantly written story that will bring out all the emotions in you. I laughed, I cried, I got mad and I definitely got frustrated. You know it's a good book when you close the last page and you're still reeling from all the emotions it brought forth in you.

This is m first book by Tammy Robinson and I can say now, it definitely won't be my last. I'm so glad that I was introduced to her work.

I simply adored Albert & Maddy. I can see
Asimah Akhtar
Apr 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One word: WOW! Having read all her previous books, I was so excited when I heard Tammy Robinson had another book out. And she never fails to disappoint!

This story is about Maddy and Albert who both have very complicated home lives, however help each other get through life's difficulties. This is a beautifully written story, which touched me very much. Full of fun, love and laughs this book will stay with me for a very long time.

I would give it more than five stars if I could!
Jayne Holmes
Apr 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book, so much so I didn't want it to end!
Cleverly written with characters you feel like you know and settings you can imagine being in.
Stirred a mixture of emotions as I read from laughing to crying.
First time I have read anything from this author, now can't wait to read some more of her talented writing,
Jul 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it, the character bee was very well written.
Sue Purbrick
Apr 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A really delightful book, from its wonderfully apt title through to the very last word. The characters are so believable and real; I was drawn right into the story, emotionally caught up in the fraught yet loving relationships within Maddy’s family and the developing love affair between her and Al-bear. Tammy Robinson has created something truly magical in her evocation of this relationship; one that starts off as awkwardly as only young love can, and then evolves into something extraordinarily ...more
Roni Ramone
Nov 12, 2018 rated it did not like it
I don’t think I’ve ever rolled my eyes at a book as much as I did while reading this
Sue McQuaide Kitt
Differently Normal is a sweet and captivating story of love, family that I found to be emotional and heartbreaking.
Maddy is a young woman, who along with her mother, cares for her younger sister Bee, who is autistic. Maddy is not looking for a relationship due to her responsibilities towards Bee, so when she meet the sweet and gentle Albert, she does not expect or want to fall in love with him.
I loved the characters of Maddy and Albert, so genuine and believable.
Tammy Robinson has once again wr
Em Yarnell
Apr 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I genuinely could not put this down. Normally quite a slow reader I started and finished it in the same day. Beautifully written with characters you can't help but fall in love with, I found myself willing them on desperate to know their fate. A truly moving, extremely accurate portrayal of human nature and nurture. Completely up to date and very relevant portrayal of individuals on the spectrum and the joy and sorrow they bring to those who know them. As a mum of a differently normal little gir ...more
Philippa Mckenna
Apr 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Written in Tammy Robinson's inimitable style, this really is a beautiful book, told through the dual perspectives of Maddy and Albert. Maddy lives with her mum, and her autistic sister, Bee. Then she meets Albert (Albear, like the French!) and both their world's are turned upside down. Such a great book! The only reason I give it 4* and not 5*, is purely because it doesn't beat Charlie & Pearl; another smasher by this author. If you haven't read Tammy's books, then DO IT NOW!! ...more
Apr 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow what a beautiful book. I wanted to give it more than 5*. Immediately i was drawn into the lives of the characters, particularly Maddy and Albert. I loved how their love story developed, particularly at the beginning when she was been stubborn and didn't want to date him. I can understand her barriers due to the love and care she has for her own family. I loved the relationship between Maddy, Bee and her mum.
Such a beautifully written story, that had me in tears. I'll definitely look out for
Apr 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, arcs
Another beautiful tale from Tammy robinson. Loved the cast of characters, especially Maddy, Bee and Al-Bert! Really brings to life the challenges of dealing with a child with autism. Told with humour, realism and warmth, you can really get insights into the lives of the main characters. I particularly enjoyed the scenes on the beach and the descriptions of the starlit night. Another good read from Tammy Robinson. 4.5* Recommended.
Simon Leonard
Mar 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is yet another brilliantly moving story by Tammy. It kept me entranced and engaged throughout the whole book and I read it in two sittings as I couldn't put it down. I recommend it to everyone as the characters are engaging and the storyline flows beautifully.
Karen Carter
Apr 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another beautiful and intensely moving book from Tammy Robinson. She has such an understanding of human relationships that every character is crafted to be utterly believable. The blossoming relationship between Maddy and Albert draws you right in and you really want all to be right for them so that they get their haven from the trials that we call life. The characters of Bee and her Mum and Albert's family are also well-written, I liked where I should and despised where needed!
This book made me
Karen Farrow
Apr 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book from start to finish and tugs at every heartstring, if you have a heart!. It highlights the impact of autism on a family, regardless of colour, creed or wealth. The effects on a "child" within that family is heart breaking but for that "child" to find someone who understands and sympathises is delightful and heartwarming. Definitely one to read!
Apr 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just love Tammys style of writing . This is a beautifully written book with characters you just fall in love with . An engaging book I found hard to put down . Captivating characters and writing that flows it's another easy 5 star read from me . 💋
Jun 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good story line, easy read

This book has a Good story line and is an easy read. Story of family turmoil , love and acceptance.
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lovely read. Made me cry, laugh out loud, and really just feel. Excellent.
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Tammy Robinson is a contemporary author from the Bay of Plenty, New Zealand. After years spent working her way around the world, Tammy settled back in New Zealand with her husband, their two girls and a newborn baby boy. She has published six novels through Amazon, and DIFFERENTLY NORMAL is her first novel with Hachette ANZ, and Piatkus in the UK. She has just finished her eighth novel, PHOTOS OF ...more

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“Sorry if I sounded defensive before. I know every family has differing degrees of dysfunction, I do. Most people we meet are still ignorant as to what autism actually is. And people tend to fear the unknown. There are varying levels of functionality, but unless you live with someone with autism it’s hard to understand how each one works. They’re all different, just like you and I. Anyway.’ I clear my throat. ‘There’s no point dwelling on it. It is what it is.” 0 likes
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