Published February 25, 2014 by HarperCollin’s Childrens Books
Alexi Littrell hasn’t told anyone what happened to her over the summer. Ashamed and embarrassed, she hides in her closet and compulsively scratches the back of her neck, trying to make the outside hurt more than the inside does.
When Bodee Lennox, the quiet and awkward boy next door, comes to live with the Littrells, Alexi discovers an unlikely friend in “the Kool-Aid Kid,” who has secrets of his own. As they lean on each other for support, Alexi gives him the strength to deal with his past, and Bodee helps her find the courage to finally face the truth.
A searing, poignant book, Faking Normal is the extraordinary debut novel from an exciting new author-Courtney C. Stevens.
I haven’t been reading too much YA contemporary lately, so when I read the synopsis for this book, I knew that I had to have it!
The book starts off with Alexi and her family at the funeral of Bodee’s mother. Bodee’s mom was Alexi’s mother’s best friend. Alexi is thinking how sorry she is for Bodee and his brother now that their mother is gone and their father is in jail for actually murdering their mother. YIKES! This was just the beginning and I was already sucked in!
Bodee ends up coming to live with the Littrell’s and for some reason Alexi trusts him. He is kind of shy and awkward, the kids call him “kool aid boy” because he dyes his hair all different colors using kool aid. Alexi hangs out with the popular kids but she doesn’t trust them enough to let them in on her secret. Bodee helps to push her out of her comfort zone and I think she helps him as well.
Through out the book, I kept thinking that the person that caused the hurt to Lexi was one person and it turns out that I was dead wrong! I loved the fact that the author kept you on your toes until the very end.
I loved the relationship between Lexi and Bodee. They both had demons that they had to work through and stood by each other until they were worked out, even if at times it was through tough love. I also felt that Lexi leaned on Bodee so much more than he needed her but that may have been because the story was told from Lexi’s POV.
The ending was literally empowering! And one that I did not expect. The author wrapped up the story nicely and there were no loose ends left by the last page.
If you are looking for a powerful, emotional read, then this book is for you! I highly recommend it and will be on the lookout for more from this author!