Title: Something Like Normal
Author: Trish Doller
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars!
Published: June 19th, 2012
When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother’s stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he’s haunted by nightmares of his best friend’s death. It’s not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he’s had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis’s dry sense of humor, and incredible sense of honor, make him an irresistible and eminently lovable hero.
I completely fell in love with this book, it was my first dive into the New Adult genre and let me just say it was awesome and I can't wait to read more books like this one, Trish Doller has become a new favorite author of mine and as I am not huge contemp fan, to say this is even more of a compliment. Something Like Normal was a short book but packed with a great story and a male narrator named Travis that I couldn't get enough of.
Travis is a Marine, he is back home on leave from Afghanistan and he is not ok. For him everything has changed from his life before, he girlfriend dumped him for his brother and sent him a Dear John letter, while in Afghanistan his best friend was killed. With a father that is overbearing and thinks of him as a disappointment and a mother who was just worried about her son while he was gone. Everything changes when he see's Harper again, he hadn't spoken to her since they were kids but, little does he know she will fix him.
I loved Travis's narration, it was exactly what I would think a twenty something year old guy would think about and talk like, it was completely believable and I thought that Doller did a great job making him believable and completely real. Travis is home where it is very obvious that he doesn't want to be, there is a lot of family drama going on and he doesn't really want to be a part of it. He loves being a marine, he said he didn't know what he wanted to do with his future, he just decided to sign up for the marines one day and now here he was with a purpose and a job. Still reeling from the death of his best marine friend Charlie, he is trying to deal and understand everything that happened.
Travis's love interest Harper was a great character and she was such a sweet girl that you couldn't help but love. She seemed quiet and reserved, she also seemed like just what Travis needed during this time and their romance could not have been better written, completely real and raw, no insta love or questions you really get to see it all.
Overall, this book was just a great contemporary, it wasn't too long, too serious, or too depressing, those tend to be my complaints with contemps. I can't wait to read more from Trish Doller, she is definitely an author to watch out for. Have you guys read this one? Is there any books that you can think of that are similar to this one that I would enjoy? Let me know in the comments!