Saturday, October 28, 2006

Looking for Normal--Betty Monthei

Title: Looking for Normal
Author: Betty Monthei
Pages: 185 p.
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0060725052

"Daddy killed Mama today, just like he told her he would."

With that haunting first line, Looking for Normal, tells the story of young Annie and her younger brother Ted after their father goes crazy and kills their mother and then himself. This is *not* an easy read. After dealing with the trauma of losing both of their parents, the kids have to deal with an abusive grandmother and a distant grandfather too much in denial to help them.

This was a very good book and made my middle school boys cry. We had a great discussion about the book itself, as well as whether or not they had ever discussed with their parents who would take them in the event of a tragedy. Although it's a difficult book to read and didn't lend itself to a "fun" discussion, it's an important book in today's violent world and would be good for a discussion group.

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