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Twelve Steps to Normal
Contributor(s): Penn, Farrah, Patterson, James (Foreward By)
ISBN: 0316471607     ISBN-13: 9780316471602
Publisher: Jimmy Patterson
    OUR PRICE: $16.19  
Product Type: Hardcover
Published: March 2018
Annotation: Forced to leave everything behind when her alcoholic father enters rehab, Kira prepares 12 rules for living like a "normal" kid when she and her father are reunited, a situation that tests her friendships and capacity for forgiveness. A first novel. 75,000 first printing. Simultaneous eBook.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Alcoholism; Fiction.
Fathers and daughters; Fiction.
Interpersonal relations; Fiction.
Dewey: [Fic]
LCCN: 2017048468
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 7-9, Age 12-14
Book type: Juvenile Fiction
Physical Information: 9.25" H x 6.25" W x 1.25" (1.25 lbs) 369 pages
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q72795
Reading Level: 6.3   Interest Level: Grades 9-12   Point Value: 21.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Contributor Bio(s): Farrah Penn was born and raised in a suburb in Texas that's far from the big city, but close enough to Whataburger. She now resides in Los Angeles, CA, with her gremlin dog and succulents. When she's not writing books, she can be found writing things for BuzzFeed and sending texts that contain too many emojis. Twelve Steps to Normal is her first novel.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2017 December #3)

Sixteen-year-old Kira moves back home after eight months of living with her aunt in Oregon while her father was in rehab. Back in Texas, Kira is happy to reunite with her best friends Lin, Whitney, and Raegan, and she hopes to reconnect with her ex-boyfriend, Jay. What she doesn't expect is that her father has opened up their home to three other recovering alcoholics he met at rehab. Kira is upset by her father's choice in roommates and does her best to keep the situation secret, but Lin knows Kira is hiding something, and Whitney is now dating Jay. Meanwhile, Kira's middle school crush, Alex, is starting to feel like the only person she can talk to. Debut novelist Penn uses her own experience with an alcoholic father (discussed in an author's note) as a basis for Kira's relationship with her father—or, rather, the relationship she wishes she had with him. Penn is open about the fact that her story doesn't address some of the harsher aspects of addition and relapse, but it does emphasize the importance of support and forgiveness. Ages 14–up. Agent: Suzie Townsend, New Leaf Literary & Media. (Mar.)

Copyright 2017 Publishers Weekly.

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2018 January)

Gr 7 Up—Penn presents the dilemma of being a child of a recovering alcoholic with heart, melancholy, and an uplifting ending. Kira moves to Portland, OR from Texas where her dad is in an addiction rehab clinic. While away, Kira's embarrassment and despair lead to her cutting off her friends, breaking up with her boyfriend, and basically shutting down. Her homecoming to Texas upon her dad's release does not turn out as planned. She wants to pick up where she left off; unfortunately, too many wounds exist with family and friends. Paramount to Kira's struggle are her new roommates—Kira hadn't realized she'd be sharing her home with three other recovering alcoholics. Plus, her best friend is dating her former boyfriend while Kira herself has new romantic feelings for a childhood friend. Forced to face her own demons, the teen comes to understand that things can't go back; but with patience and acceptance, she can move forward. This is good choice for those seeking realism that isn't too disturbing. The book's tame and light romance with a dose of reality is a good bridge for middle grade readers looking to dabble in YA fiction. VERDICT A strong selection for middle school and high school libraries.—Lisa Ehrle, Falcon Creek Middle School, CO

Copyright 2017 School Library Journal.