Book Review: North Of Normal

After reading Tara Westover's Educated, my sister in law (Claire) recommend this book to me. If you've read either (or both!) The Glass Castle and Educated, then I'm pretty sure that you'll also be a fan of North of Normal, as I was.

The story is told by Cea. She had a most unique childhood, growing up in the 70's to a teenage mother. Her mother's family were hard-core hippies and were all about free love and drugs. Especially pot. In fact, they left civilization when Cea was only a baby, and her grandfather, Dick, took the family out into the Alaskan wilderness to live in a tipi and grow marijuana.

Honestly, I find Cea's story incredible. Growing up with little to no interaction with other children, in a wild world of bears, and snowstorms, and outdoor "pits" in place of even an outhouse. And then, the shock of moving at the age of eight, and living in a "real" house, for the first time. The struggle that she goes through, learning to find her place in a world she has no knowledge of, without a mother that is entirely present or even attempting to parent, to her career as a model at the age of 13.

I think what I find most unique about Cea's story is that she was able to look back on her life, and while she is writing it years after everything happened, she was able to honestly see the other people. She is able to realize that no one is perfect, and people do things, sometimes hurtful things to other people, because of the lack of kindness, and things that they have experienced in their own lives. I found the way that she wrote her story about dysfunction, neglect, and abuse, to be graciously written, without attacking, or speaking ill of others.

This is a delightful read, and I really enjoyed it. A five star!

All book reviews are just my opinion. Please always read the book for yourself and feel free to open a discussion!


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