David, the main character in this book, wants nothing more than just to be a girl, and his shame and embarrassment lead him to tell nobody other than his two best friends. When a new boy arrives at his school, Leo, he tries to distance himself from everyone as much as possible and avoids drawing attention to himself. David soon realises that Leo is also hiding something just like himself. Eventually David manages to become friends with Leo and they find out each other’s secrets.
I enjoyed this book as it was easy to read, and was interesting as it had a strong moral storyline. It’s simple, and rather unusually, it’s not the typical ‘happily ever after’ story you’d expect, and that’s what I love about it. It kept me hooked, and I would highly recommend it.
The Art of Being Normal is an amazing novel combining the stories of two boys, Leo and David. All David wants is to be a girl while Leo just wants to finish his school year without any more incidents. They both end up helping each other after an unfortunate case of canteen bullies.
This is an incredible book as it deals not only with growing up but with gender identity and the person you want to be vs. the person you are. I think anyone who enjoys a good reality book should read this and anyone who doesn’t understand gender should read this. It is relatable and real and can be read by both boys and girls. To me, this is a great novel and I highly recommend it.
The Art of Being Normal is a white-knuckle ride of a book that will keep you on tenterhooks until the last page. The story focuses both on David, whose heart’s desire is to be a girl, and Leo, whose only wish is to be invisible.
David’s school days are constantly marred by his classmate’s hurtful criticism, while Leo tries to put his past behind him when he joins David’s school.
Gradually, throughout the book, their friendship blossoms, leading them and the reader through twists and turns and a rollercoaster ride of emotions.
I really enjoyed this book, and literally couldn’t put it down. It really made me feel for the characters and realise what it might be like to be in their shoes. I’d recommend this book to whoever has felt a little different. And even if you haven’t, read it anyway! I promise you a spectacular read.
David, the main character, wants nothing more than to be a girl, but no-one knows this except his 2 best friends. When new boy, Leo arrives at school he tries to distance himself from everyone, and avoids drawing attention to himself. He also is hiding something. David eventually manages to become friends with Leo and they find out each other’s secrets.
I enjoyed this book, it was easy to read, had a good strong storyline. It kept me hooked, and I’d recommend it highly.
A journey exploring transgender and bullying for what you are or want to be. This is shown from two points of view, David and Leo. Leo transferred to Eden Park School due to bullying and meets David after saving him from utter humiliation. Davis helps Leo all the time and Leo returns the favour by tutoring David for Maths. Also David offers to accompany Leo in an adventure to find his biological father. But things don’t go according to Leo’s plan.
One of the most interesting characters in Alicia Baker because we get an insight into her feelings and what she truly feels. The most exciting part of the story for me was when Leo and Alicia have their ‘ten minutes in heaven’ because the way Lisa Williamson wrote that scene seemed like she was very ‘chilled’.
Overall my opinion of the book is that it was written in an unusual way because she touched the topic of transgender and bullying in such a way that keeps you engaged and you fly through the book quickly.
FANTASTIC ! 15/10
The Art of Being Normal is mainly about two people, David Piper and Leo Denton, who are different to everyone else and have two secrets of their own. It has an interesting storyline: one wants to be a transgender, but at the same time the other is a transgender.
A few years back in the story, David wrote that he wanted to be a girl when he grew up and ever since then problems have arisen for him – especially problems with the school bully, Harry Beaumont, only making matters worse for David. He had only two friends whom he could trust, Essie and Felix, but soon an unexpected friendship between him and Leo formed when Leo joined David’s school and stood up for him in a fight, someone whom David also began to confide in later on.
It makes me feel for the transgender people out there, because David and Leo were being bullied just because they were different to everyone else, when there was nothing they could really do about their current situation. This book is undoubtedly one of my favourites, as it made me feel very sorry for all transgender people who are treated like David and Leo were during the story, being bullied by people who didn’t understand the depth of their situation. I would say it is aimed for teenagers aged 13-15 years old, and I think it would appeal to teenagers who are having transgender issues or people interested in knowing how these ‘abnormal’ (however unfortunate) people cope with being made fun of about something that isn’t their fault, something that they could not easily change for the better.
Leo has switched gender and that’s the reason why he went to Eden Park school. David and Leo’s friendship starts when Leo stands up for David during lunch, when Harry was reading out David’s diary. They both share an adventure by running away from home for two days in order to search for Leo’s dad, Jonathan.
Jonathan-Leo’s Dad-is an interesting character because he left Leo, his sister Amber and Leo’s mum. When Leo and David go to see him he calls him a ‘freak’ and we don’t know if he remembers them or not.
Leo’s sister mentions ‘February’ when they talk to each other. February is when Leo turned up to school as a boy and was tricked by someone in his school in Cloverdale to go to the forest. Then he almost got beaten up by a gang – a teacher came and saved the day. That was the most fascinating part of the story in my opinion.
Overall, I think it is a really good and stimulating book because it shows two different points of view and I have learnt that transgender people are no different to normal people.
I rate the book a 10/10!