Customer Reviews for

Ten Miles Past Normal

Average Rating 4.5
( 40 )
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(25)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

12 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

Loved It!

Ten Miles Past Normal is one of the most adorable and hilarious coming-of-age stories I've read in a while!

How was little Jane supposed to know when requesting that her parents move to a farm, they would actually do so? Sure, it may sound like every little kid's dr...
Ten Miles Past Normal is one of the most adorable and hilarious coming-of-age stories I've read in a while!

How was little Jane supposed to know when requesting that her parents move to a farm, they would actually do so? Sure, it may sound like every little kid's dream, but come high school it won't be nearly as fun as cute, as Jane is soon to learn. For one, on the first day of high school school, Jane steps in goat poop when doing her daily farm chores (yes, farm chores) and goes to school with it not noticing, but everyone else does as they soon begin to call her "the girl who came to school with goat poop on her shoe." Adding to the horribleness that is Jane's freshman year of high school is the fact she has barley any classes with any of her friends, including lunch. But when gets offered the chance to learn bass and join Jam Band with her new friend Monster's help, she jumps at the chance, and when she meets a new girl at lunch, she quickly begins to see that things can get better, but will she realize being ten miles past normal is the best thing ever in time? Only more pages will tell in this sweet story of one girl's journey to becoming her own person.

As with most books I enjoy, I really enjoyed the characters in Ten Miles Past Normal. All of them were there own unique people and that's what I loved most about them. For instance, there's Monster who's one of the tallest and scariest looking guys around, but as it turns out he's also one of the sweetest guys. Then there's Sarah, Jane's best friend, and Emma, Sarah's older sister, who are two girls who don't let anything get in the way of them getting what the want, which often cased for several laugh-out-load funny scenes. Finally, there's Jane, the queen of them all, and while Jane may think being "normal" is the thing to be, her journey to become anything but is funny and heartwarming.

While the plot of this was kind of scattered over the place, I still enjoyed this book to the fullest potential possible. I loved how Frances tied so many different plot lines together in a way that they never felt overwhelming, and how she also managed to show through her characters that being normal is way overrated and that you should never judge a book by its cover.

In all, Ten Miles Past Normal is a unique read filled with many lovable characters that will leave almost anyone with a smile on their face by the end.

Grade: A+

posted by Lauren817 on June 22, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Just OK

Ten Miles Past Normal was a quick and fun read, but I found that it was boring at times. There was very little dialogue, though when there was any, it was mostly funny. The writing was great and clear and I found myself giggling and heartbroken along the way.

Janie j...
Ten Miles Past Normal was a quick and fun read, but I found that it was boring at times. There was very little dialogue, though when there was any, it was mostly funny. The writing was great and clear and I found myself giggling and heartbroken along the way.

Janie just wants to blend in at school. She convinces herself that she doesn't need any new friends. After a few humiliating events, she just wants people NOT to notice her at all. I felt so sorry for her, because high school, as her mom said multiple times, is supposed to be a good time in someone's life. She felt alone and couldn't help but to think it was her fault, after all, she requested that they move to a mini-farm in the first place!

Then Janie and her best friend Sarah finally get the chance to talk to Jeremy, the cute Jam Band kid. Without any musical talent, Janie and Sarah decide to join Jam Band and along the way meet Monster (yeah, that's his real name ;) ) and very talented musician who makes Janie feel special.

Janie and Sarah, while working on a school project, find out that a local named Harlan Pritchard played a big role in a historical event. Then they go off on a sort of adventure, along with Sarah's older sister Emma (who is the wild child), to uncover the real stories and bring light to these heroes!

I really loved the characters is this story. Everyone added a different aspect to it and they were all fun to learn about. My favorite was Monster. He was mature, but fun and made Janie feel like she didn't just blend into the wall and go unoticed.

I loved the little adventures and self-discoveries Janie has throughout the book, but I just couldn't get past the dragging on of the first person point-of-view. I would have enjoyed more dialogue and feel that it could've added much more to the novel and broken up the monotonous vibe! Bottom line is that I feel it is a good, quick read, but nothing out of the ordinary.

posted by Tawni on May 12, 2011

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  • Posted March 14, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Review from Blkosiner's Book Blog

    Ten Miles Past Normal is quirky and easy read. Janie, the main character is easy to relate to, and her adventures are realistic.

    The secondary characters, such as Monster, are wonderful and add so much to the story. Another thing that I like is that Janie's mom is present in her life, and portrayed as a "normal" if a bit clueless and a tad annoying at times mom.

    I think its a good lesson how she realizes how other's opinions and thoughts are dictating her opinion and I liked how she accepted who she was.

    This is a sweet contemporary, and I really enjoyed.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2012

    Pretty Good Book

    This book was not like any other books I'm reading right now. I can honestly say I enjoyed reading this book. I recommend this to anyone who wants a bit of a different kind of story.
    -A

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 20, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    If this is ten miles, I'd run it again with pleasure!

    Ten Miles Past Normal is one of those books where I got really sad when the last page came and had to leave all these interesting characters behind! This is definitely a book for anyone who went through high school feeling out of place but - hopefully, eventually, unexpectedly, happily - found a niche to call their own. Janie was such an excellent character! She was funny, easy to relate with, creative, level-headed, endearing, and when she finally found her groove in high school, Janie definitely became a rockstar - or she definitely had the makings of one (I say that because the ending really leaves it up in the air). Her family were interesting, her new friends were interesting, her best friend was interesting - seriously, Frances O'Roark Dowell has brought to life such fascinating characters that I wish they had gone to MY high school. What's unusual is that there really isn't any major romance arc. I say "unusual" because I like to have a little romance to further whet my curiosity. While I kept my eye out for one and thought there could have been one, Ten Miles Past Normal didn't need one. Janie didn't really need a guy. I didn't really need the romance to drive a story. The characters, like I said, really took off with the story and I gladly followed their lead! It was refreshing, truth be told, to see how Janie carved her own place in the world, without the support of a love interest and the distracting desire to have one. A really great contemporary, Ten Miles Past Normal delighted me with its larger-than-life characters and brought back fond memories of me not being normal during high school.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2013

    awesome

    Great story

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 17, 2012

    Such a good book!

    Francis O'Roark Dowell really knows how to conect with teenage girls.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2011

    Good

    Its good not mmy favorite book but you should read it

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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