Customer Reviews for

A Different Kind of Normal

Average Rating 4.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 16 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted August 8, 2012

    "Amazing Tale of Family, Love, & Loyalty"

    Jaden Bruxelle is a young, extremely serious and professional hospice nurse. She has helped patients and their families through their final moments with tender loving care, respect and understanding. But, her main concern is for the welfare of Tate, the gifted young man who she has loved and cared for since her drug-addicted Sister; Brooke gave birth to him seventeen years ago and walked out of their lives. Jaden became his Mother (later known as “Boss Mom”) at 19. Tate’s birth was a difficult one and due to lack of prenatal care, use of drugs, etc., he was born with an enlarged head and eye placement issues. Tate is not mentally challenged—on the contrary, Tate is one brilliant, intuitive, loving individual, who wants to be accepted for who he is and be a part of “the group” at school but his fondest wish is to play basketball. Jaden quakes at the notion, afraid he’ll get hurt—especially since he has a shunt which could lead to serious consequences if dislodged. I have to say that Tate captured my heart right from the start. His outlook on life, the way he handles the size of his head (naming it “General Noggin”--don’t forget Bert, Ernie, Billy, Bob, and his eyes; “Roadrunner” and “Mickey Mouse”), trying so hard to fit in while being bullied and mistreated—then turning the other cheek. We could all learn much from Tate. What an extraordinary fellow! His personality shines through even more on his blog. Through all of the trials and tribulations, family is the anchor in both of their lives. To truly understand the Bruxelle Family roots, we are first transported back in time and “across the pond” and are introduced to witchly twin ancestors; Henrietta and Elizabeth who are supposedly responsible for “The Curse”. They married wealthy gentlemen and each gave birth to a daughter—Iris and Rosemary, who carried on their Mothers’ powers, almost losing their lives to a lynch mob, then escaping to America where their names became Faith and Grace. Their knowledge of herbs, spices, flowers, (and spells) have been passed down for generations—landing at Jaden’s feet. We meet Jaden’s soap opera queen, extremely outspoken but loving Mother; Rowan, who wants nothing more than the best for her children and grandchildren while dealing with the ever present feeling of loss for her beloved husband and missing daughter. Tate affectionately calls her “Nana Bird”. Ex-wrestler turned florist, muscled teddy bear, Jaden’s Brother, Caden, has his hands full being a single Dad to spitfire, adopted daughter; Dimini and perpetual motion, costumed triplets; Heloise, Harvey and Hazel. As strong as her love is for her family, Jaden has deep, romantic feelings for Tate’s talented neurosurgeon; Ethan Robbins hidden within, as she is aware there can’t be a romance due to his doctor/patient relationship with Tate. Or can it?? Ethan is the only one she trusts with her son’s care. The insight into Jaden’s hospice cases will tug at your heart—and you’re allowed (my opinion), to hiss and boo at slime-ball, Dirk. Will Tate get to play basketball on his High School’s team? Will Jaden and Ethan find love? You’ll chuckle, laugh out loud and, believe me, the tears will flow, within the pages of this Author’s latest masterpiece. You won’t be disappointed! All I can say is “Thank-you and more, more, more Cathy!” I’ll be waiting for more heartwarming tales and bet you will be too! Nancy Narma

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2012

    Wonderful book!

    I really enjoyed this book. Love all of her books and this did not disappoint.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2012

    Fabulous

    Another great read by Cathy Lamb!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2012

    Fabulous Fabulous

    Cathy lamb is so gifte in what she can do with words. Amazing the emotions she evokes with mere words and there are many deep emotions in this book. There is never a dull moment with her colorful characters. So glad to be able to share this book with my daughter but i'll be recommending it to many others. Thank you cathy for another epic tale.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2012

    Cathy lamb

    My all time favorite author, great story

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2012

    Excellent

    This one was well worth the wait. Cathy nailed the feeling of wanting to fit in for a person who is "different". An absolutely beautiful story with vivid characters. Strong emotions expressed from start to finish in the book and felt as a reader. What a gifted writer Cathy is.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 1, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    LOVED it!

    I can sum this book up in one word: Beautiful! In true Cathy Lamb fashion, readers are brought a story that will make you laugh out loud, and is absolutely certain to bring forth tears of empathy and grief. It's what Cathy Lamb does best, and it's probably why she truly is my favorite author.

    Lamb's newest novel tells the story of 17-year old Tate. Born to a strung-out and drug-addicted mother (Brooke), and adopted at birth by his 19-year old aunt (Jaden), Tate's life will be anything but easy. Likely due to his biological mother's drug abuse and lack of any prenatal attention, Tate is born with a very enlarged head and lopsided eyes which make him appear freakish to strangers. To his family - his Boss Mom (adopted mom, Jaden), his Nana Bird (grandmother), and his uncle and cousins - Tate is beautiful. He's brilliant and funny, and he teaches his family that love and laughter heal tears.

    When Tate begs to go out for the basketball team, Jaden's overprotective and hovering tendencies begin to smother her enthusiastic son. Can Jaden put aside her fears and allow Tate to behave like a normal kid? Can she step back and allow him to handle, in his own way, the teasing of strangers without pounding them to a pulp with her bare hands?

    A Different Kind of Normal is what fans of Lamb have come to expect: a story of love and family, beautifully written with strong characters, some sadness, and a whole lot of humor. She simply never let's us down!

    Finally getting to read a new Cathy Lamb book is like being on a diet for a whole year; eating only fresh fruits and vegetables, but yearning for that warm chocolate lava dessert at your favorite restaurant. You finally decide to treat yourself, so you feel the need to eat it slowly and savor every single bite because you know - when you're done - you'll have to go right back to those ho-hum fruits and veggies you've been existing on for the last year.

    I've finished my "dessert." I wish I could say I ate it slowly and savored every single bite, but the truth is that I shoveled it in with a serving spoon in each hand. It's going to be a long year while I wait to see what Cathy Lamb has in store for us next.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 22, 2012

    A Different Kind of Normal - A Heart Felt Story!

    I loved this book. It really hit home. One of the main characters in this book was born with a big head. The medical term for this is called Hydrocephalus. I have a relative that was born with this same condition. This made the book come alive for me because of that fact. Tate Bruxelle, was born with a big head. His real mother, Brooke, abandoned him after birth. She simply walked away from the hospital leaving Tate there. Jaden Bruxelle, the sister of Brooke, at nineteen years of age took Tate to raise as her own; giving him the care he would have never gotten if Brooke had stuck around. Tate called Jaden, Boss Mom. Jaden and Brooke’s mother Rowan Bruxelle, a Hollywood movie star, also played an important part in Tate’s life. Tate called Rowan, Nana Bird. Tate also had a name for his big head, General Noggin. There are many other supporting characters in this book that are just as loveable as the main characters. You will come to love them as I did. I experienced many emotions while reading this book. Laughter, oh my goodness there is so many laugh out loud moments in this book. There is anger, because some people are just plain mean. There are moments of great sadness and loss. Most importantly there is love and plenty of it. The family in this book is a very supporting family. The love just flows. The caring is outstanding. This book shows how a true family lives and even though it is fictional, you get good goose bump moments from it. I really loved that about this book. A family sticking together through thick or thin is what it is all about. I took away from this book that compassion is very important. Letting go of hurts is very important. Forgiveness is very important. Don’t spend your life hating what you can’t change but loving what you can. The author Cathy Lamb is a new author to me. This is the first book I have read of hers. It won’t be the last. She has a way with words describing each and every scene as if you were right there in it. She knows how to bring out compassion, support, caring, forgiveness, and love in her main characters. To sum it up, I just can’t say enough about this book. I wish to thank Kensington Publishers for providing me with an ARC copy of this book to read and review. The opinions expressed are mine alone.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 6, 2013

    What a perfect book this was to read everything about it made yo

    What a perfect book this was to read everything about it made you happy, sad, etc all the emotions. I of course have loved every cathy lamb book i have read and this one is no different. It is about a boy named Tate who is 17 and like any other highschool boy except one thing, he was born to a drug addict, brooke, his other mother, and was adopted by Jaden, Brooks sister, due to the fact that brooke left him at the hospital so Jaden, Boss Mom, is the greatest mom and she is very protective of Tate bc the drugs did a number on him while he was in the womb, he was born with an overly sized head, named GeneralNoggin. Tate does a great job at fending off dumb kids and parents that make fun of him but when he wants to go out for the basketball team Mom Jaden says no b/c tate has a shunt in his head and she is afraid...well after many many arguments mom gives in and its all great for a while....wont give any spoilers away but the characters are well defined, plot, setting r perfect! in cathy's books u want to b there, u want to meet the characters, see the town etc. Nanabird, aka tates grandma is a hoot and so are the rest of the family, this is a must read for any kid or parent that has ever had a bulling problem or have ever been made fun of for something, i know bc i have and was bullied some and made fun of as a kid for my weight issue so i can totally relate in some instances to tate. its a very refreshing hard look at life and it definitely makes you think. LOved it 5 stars would give it a perfect 10! thanks cathy when is the next one due! i will b buying it too!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2012

    Best book I have read in a long time!

    A Different Kind of Normal had me laughing out loud and bawling my eyes out. It's the hilarious, sweet, endearing, and heart-breaking story of Tate and his mother, Jaden and their incredibly dynamic family. I really appreciated the characters' wit and how deeply they loved, supported, and protected one another.

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    Posted December 13, 2012

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    Posted December 19, 2012

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    Posted February 1, 2013

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    Posted February 15, 2014

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    Posted January 4, 2013

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    Posted October 17, 2012

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