Monday, June 1, 2015

Something Like Normal by Trish Doller

by Alida Hanson

Travis enlisted in the Marines right after graduation and is serving in Afghanistan. His ex-football pro father is a jerk. His little brother is on a perpetual free ride. His mother frantically tries to keep everything together. And his "girlfriend" just broke up with him--for his little brother. Basically almost everyone in his "home" life is not emotionally available to him--or anyone else. He can't depend on them like his comrades in Afghanistan.

Now he's home on leave in Ft. Meyers, FL, for a few weeks to "pull himself together" as his superior advises--because he watched his best friend get killed in Afghanistan. Good luck with that, Travis!

But the amazing thing is, Travis does it. He lets go of hurtful people and accepts healthy people into his life. There is no magically beautiful ending to this story, but you get the sense that Travis is making the right choices and listening to the right people. The Florida setting is evocative and a major part of the book. The romance between Travis and Harper is healing and realistic.

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