Favorite Quotes on Books and Reading

"A book is a gift you can open again and again." Garrison Keillor

Literature is a textually transmitted disease, normally contracted in childhood.” Jane Yolen

"It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it." Oscar Wilde

"Books have furnished, burnished, and enabled my life." Julia Keller

Monday, October 28, 2013

Book 320: THE EDGE OF NORMAL Review

The Edge of Normal by Carla Norton
ISBN:  9781250031044 (hardcover)
ISBN:  9781250031051 (ebook)
ASIN:  B00C74R6AE (Kindle edition)
Publication date: September 10, 2013 
Publisher: Minotaur Books

In many ways, Reeve LeClaire looks like a typical twenty-two year old girl. She's finally landed her own apartment, she waitresses to pay the bills, and she wishes she wasn't so nervous around new people. She thinks of herself as agile, not skittish. As serious, not grim. But Reeve is anything but normal.
Ten years ago, she was kidnapped and held captive. After a lucky escape, she's spent the last six years trying to rebuild her life, a recovery thanks in large part to her indispensable therapist Dr. Ezra Lerner. But when he asks her to help another girl rescued from a similar situation, Reeve realizes she may not simply need to mentor this young victim—she may be the only one who can protect her from a cunning predator who is still out there, watching every move.
From the author of the #1 non-fiction bestseller Perfect Victim: The True Story of the Girl in the Box comes a novel that draws you into a chilling and engrossing world. With powerfully gripping characters and an ending that is a masterpiece of deception, Carla Norton's The Edge of Normal is a stunning debut thriller. 


Reeve LeClaire has been forced to rebuild her life with a new hair color, new name, new location, and is attempting to live a "normal" life. Reeve was kidnapped when she was twelve and held captive for nearly four years by a sadistic pedophile rapist. She has physical, emotional and mental scars that she is still learning to overcome. She knows that she may look normal, but that appearances are often deceiving. She is easily frightened and often nervous in new situations and around new people. Six years after her abduction she is still in therapy. She's recently been fired from her waitressing job, isn't looking forward to the Thanksgiving holiday with her family (simply because she isn't the "normal" child), and wonders where her life is going to lead. She abruptly decides to accept her therapist's request to be available to a young kidnap and torture victim.

Reeve isn't quite sure what kind of help she can provide to Tilly, but she quickly vows to help it whatever way she can. As the District Attorney's office and police investigate Tilly's return, it quickly becomes apparent to Reeve, that this case is highly political. She wants justice for Tilly but not if it means Tilly's peace of mind is destroyed. As the investigation develops, Reeve may be an innocent bystander but she quickly becomes a fierce protector and is willing to go the extra mile to ensure the truth is revealed with no adverse consequences to Tilly. What follows is a high-stakes game of cat-and-mouse between Reeve, the investigators and the real kidnapper. Will she be able to uncover the truth and find the other missing girls before it's too late?

Ms. Norton has provided a suspense thriller that kept me on the edge of my seat. It was amazing to watch Reeve become this fearless crusader on behalf of her young friend, Tilly. Reeve is no longer this nervous and frightened young woman but almost an avenging angel. Reading about what Reeve, Tilly and the other young girls endured at the hands of their crazed kidnappers was heartbreaking. Although Reeve undergoes a massive change in her personality, I didn't find that unbelievable. There are parts of The Edge of Normal that are dark and disturbing, but unfortunately we live in a world filled with the dark and disturbing. Ms. Norton doesn't sugarcoat the atrocities these girls suffer but she doesn't stuff it down the reader's throat either by going into extreme detail. The Edge of Normal is more than a suspense thriller, it is also a coming-of-age story, as well as a good-overcomes-evil story. The subject may not be for everyone, but I found it to be presented in a respectful manner making for one great read.

Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this book free for review purposes from the publisher via NetGalley. I was not paid, required or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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