Friday, October 05, 2012

The Other Normals by Ned Vizzini

The Other Normals by Ned Vizzini

Fifteen-year-old Perry (real name Peregrine) Eckert is obsessed with the Role-Playing Game (henceforth referred to as RPG) Creatures and Caverns.  Unfortunately, he doesn't have anyone to play with, and instead spends all of his time reading the rule books and creating characters.  He's excited to have a whole summer ahead of him to spend delving into the newest expansion of his favorite game.

His parents, however, have a different idea -- and send him off to Camp Washiska Lake to experience the "real world" and interact with "normal" kids.  When he gets to camp, he finds that it's not exactly what the brochure made it out to be... to say the least!

The Other Normals is a fun and fantastical look at one corner of nerd culture, and Vizzini realistically portrays the struggles and angst of growing up a social outcast.  Perry's bitterness and anti-social qualities may be a bit off-putting at first, but he grows develops through the course of the novel as he is thrust into very unusual situations.

You can find The Other Normals in the VBPL catalog, along with Ned Vizzini's earlier works, including It's Kind of a Funny Story (which was also made into a movie).  Readers may also enjoy Cory Doctorow's Little Brother and For the Win, along with Julie Halpern's Into the Wild Nerd Yonder.

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