Gustavo Tiberius is not normal. He knows this. Everyone in his small town of Abby, Oregon, knows this. He reads encyclopedias every night before bed. He has a pet ferret called Harry S. Truman. He owns a video rental store that no one goes to. His closest friends are a lady named Lottie with drag queen hair and a trio of elderly Vespa riders known as the We Three Queens.
Gus is not normal. And he's fine with that. All he wants is to be left alone.
Until Casey, an asexual stoner hipster and the newest employee at Lottie's Lattes, enters his life. For some reason, Casey thinks Gus is the greatest thing ever. And maybe Gus is starting to think the same thing about Casey, even if Casey is obsessive about Instagramming his food.
But Gus isn't normal and Casey deserves someone who can be. Suddenly wanting to be that someone, Gus steps out of his comfort zone and plans to become the most normal person ever.
After all, what could possibly go wrong?
©2015 TJ Klune (P)2016 Dreamspinner Press
I've got a fair few of TJ Klune's books on Audible and I do enjoy them immensely but this is the first book I've listened to with this narrator and it's taken it into a new level of enjoyment. This is simply beautifully performed and I know that as soon as I've finished (one chapter left!) I'm going to go straight back to the beginning and start it again. The characters are so easy to like, the love story unusual and compelling and the narrator does an equally wonderful job of comedy and pathos. Yes it's long (it seems to be TJ Klune's trademark) but this is the first book of the author's that I haven't got a little bit impatient with as the story played out and I put that down to this brilliant narrator. I'll definitely be seeking out more of his work and can throughly recommend this as one of TJ Klune's most outstanding works.
Made all the better by a Stellar narration. I'm sure other drivers thought I had a screw loose with all the laughing I've done. The tears however are another subject! Tj Klune is a master wordsmith.
Absolutely loved it, couldn't stop myself listening to this very compelling story.
The narrator was on point to pull off all these diverse characters. My favorite parts were involving the recorded calls and both Mitzi and Mytzy. Also, whenever Gus was going 'what the hell' and 'oh my god' which he does quite a bit.
I'm an average sort of bloke. I drive a truck round the uk and have gotten into listening to audiobooks as I drive a round...
Have got quite a few of TJ Klunes books. The best being lightning strike heart. There are bit of that in this one, though unfortunately Derrick McClain completely misses the point, and any humour is lost, There's a gay couple, one of which is 'an actor' but not an ounce of camp anywhere..
Michael Lesley would have brought the characters to life but as it is the story plods along in a very dreary fashion.. A shame really..
Quirky, warm, funny, mad, unexpected.
Loved it. This would be the third book of TJ Klune so I think it's safe to say I'm hooked.
"ALL THE STARS FOR THIS. ALL OF THEM."
Oh, Derrick McClain, you hit a home run with this one.
He brought Gustavo Tiberius to life, made Casey Richards so much more than just an asexual stoner hipster, and I loved what he did to make Lottie and We Three Queens so real.
ALL THE STARS FOR THIS. ALL OF THEM.
This. This was...awesome and fantastic and wonderful and heartwarming and touching and sad and funny and just...I want to fangirl all over this so hard. But in a totally not gross way.
Gustavo Tiberius is not normal. After his father, Pastor Tommy dies, Gus settles into a his daily routine. It's very much a wash, rinse, repeat kind of life until the day he and his ferret, Harry S. Truman, walk into Lottie's Lattes and he meets Casey Richards, a stoner hipster who turns his world upside down.
Gus is immediately both repelled and fascinated by Casey...but more time spent with Casey makes Gus want something he's never really thought to want before: he decides he wants to be "normal" so he can be with Casey. What follows is both touching and hilarious as Gus sets about trying to be the best normal person he can be with some interesting results.
This story about a man who accepts everyone, even if he's snarky about it, gave me so many feels. I got a total heart boner. Seriously, this story good touched me all over my heart.
There are three things I expect from a TJ Klune story: 1. To laugh. Oh, how I laughed. I laughed a lot. 2. To have wookie-cry-face at some point. Yep, that happened too. The laughs and the feels in this are more muted than in other TJ stories, but no less magnificent. And 3. To learn something. Which I did. I learned a little more about acceptance, asexuality, and being true to yourself.
I CANNOT RECOMMEND THIS ENOUGH. Buy this book. Now. Go. Seriously. Go get this book right now!
"All the laughs"
Oh yeah. For a good laugh, without the cheap silly jokes.
you feel inside the story. Able to imagine the places the characters are in.
The narrator. he made the story come alive.
the MC. He is weird, in a 'is he serious?' way. He is like one of these aliens who land on earth, and need to learn how to live with humans like a human :)
fun book. You laugh, and though sometimes feel sorry for the MC, its not really heartbreaking. Maybe black comedy?
"How to frown like a normal person ;-)"
I have a definite preference when it comes to M/M romance and or M/M paranormal fantasy and this story is definitely abnormal for me as a choice, but am so very glad that I did take the chance and brought it into my library.
I, as a rule, do not write reviews as I feel everybody has their own set of filters or ground rules that shape their own criteria of what constitutes a "good story".
So maybe if I give a little background someone of a similar disposition will find this helpful...
I did a tour of duty for 8 years and then got out of the Army. I never regretted either joining or leaving when I did, proud of my service and got an Honorable Discharge and all that...
My childhood was split between Alaska and Washington and consisted of fun, hard work, hunting, fishing; surrounded by first a fishing environment and then a farming one, both environments promoted a definite ideal of accepted sexuality and/or masculinity....
Given all that, I found myself smiling, laughing, mourning and quietly rooting and cheering on Gustavo and Casey.
The idea of building a friendship and relationship where the focal point is just that -- the friendship and relationship -- and where the carnal physicality is not the core or predominant element as a romance story is probably a tough story to sell, but TJ Klune does a wonderful job in this story with Gus and Casey....
All that to say, give this book a try, you may find yourself quietly but delightfully surprised.....
Need to give Derrick McClain his due as well, I think this is the first time I've had the pleasure of one of his performances, for what it is worth I will start to watch for his name on other titles, I thoroughly enjoyed his interpretation and performance as a story teller.
"Wanna make yourself happier? Listen to this one!"
The character "Gus" and how the narrator absolutely brought him to life!
I have never read another book like this. It seemed like a quirky premise for a rom-com, and boy was it a refreshing read!
He brings all the characters to life, but in particular, Gus, Casey, and the customer service rep. at the monopolizing phone & cable company. : )
Gustavo Tiberius, because he is so socially awkward and so decisively contrary to nearly everything in the world! He is one very unique and somewhat sheltered guy that the book revolves around.
This book is a work of art! It has got to be the funniest, most enjoyable book I have ever listened to! I don’t know how many times I just laughed out loud at that quirky character, Gus, and I could just picture Casey, the "asexual stoner hipster” that Gus fell in love with. I will definitely be recommending it to friends for a feel-good, fun read! This one will be worth reading and re-reading, as well! Before I was half way through, I had already bought 3 more of Klune's books, and I am really, really looking forward to it!
"A rating overall..."
This story was epic in just how fun and funny it was. I can't imagine reading it could be near as much fun as listening to it, because the narrator was amazing. His inflections for Gus and Casey were absolute perfection. Through his voices, he managed Gus's disdain, Casey's stoned cluelessness, and the We Three Queens astounded and confounded comments perfectly. I LOVED listening to this book.
And, wow, I don't honestly know what else I can say about this book. I can pretty much guarantee that it's like nothing you have ever read before (TJ Klune's brain is a bizarre, but fabulous place). There are moments when it's twisted. There are moments when it's sweet. And there are moments when it's heartbreaking...Gus's remembered moments with his father slayed me. I can't imagine what an incredible man he was to raise Gus to be completely okay with being this VERY off-the-wall character.
And yeah, Gus has his moments of self-doubt...thus the online "Normal" lessons.
Oh. My. God.
The things that came up in the narration of these lessons literally kept me laughing out loud and rolling with laughter.
It's a fabulous, feel good book about two men who learn to love one another despite and because of their differences. I'm so glad that I listened to it. I HIGHLY recommend it!!
TJ Klune's How To Be A Normal Person is almost as good as rainbow colored cotton candy at a gay pride parade. Wait a minute I don't like cotton candy. Make that almost as good as rainbow colored pizza. Hmmm. Wait. Forget that stuff. It's a book that is funtastic and sure to be one of your all-time favorite Audible audiobooks.
This book was amazing, start to finish. I couldn't put it down (or, turn it off). The humor and sarcasm made me laugh out loud on multiple occasions, and the realness of the characters made them so relatable. The narration was on point and gave an extra "pizzazz" to the whole thing. I highly recommend it, as you will learn valuable life lessons without even realizing it. Will definitely be reading more of TJ Klune's books.
Wasn't very impressed.
TJ Klunes stories usually always leave a lasting impression. Sadly, this one fell flat for me. And kind of bored me.
There were some funny and cute moments, but didn't have that WOW WHAT A STORY factor like Murmuration or made me LOL like lightning struck heart. And the characters didn't seem to be very connected in a romantic sense.
Overall it was good, but not great. I'd recommend the others before this one.
PS...wtf was up with that ending?!?! OMG
This book had a very weird vibe for me. I've loved a few other books from this author (The At First Sight series, specifically) and this one just doesn't stack up to those. It does have a little bit of the humor, and the side characters are as charming as the sides from either of those. A few moments were laugh out loud funny, actually.
My problem in this story is the main character. He has an almost Norman Bates-like level of obsession toward his deceased father. He runs a business he seems to hate because it was his father's. His opinions on most things are just parrots of what his father thought of them. He even begins to wear his father's clothes. I wouldn't have been surprised if the book had ended in murder.
The romance in this one is somewhat lacking as well. The main character falls in lust with the love interest right away while seemingly liking nothing about his personality. The love interest seems to genuinely like the main, though the things he says he likes about the main are all of the things that the main has done to change himself in order to win the affection of the love interest. It's uncomfortable and I honestly find myself rooting for a breakup for a good portion of the book. Overall, I made it 10 hours in and couldn't bring myself to finish. The narrator was pretty good. I just couldn't get through the book.
"best non-hipster, hipster"
oh my gods, this is one of the best things ever.
Gus is so grumpy and Casey is so not and they are just so funny. Where does TJ come up with this stuff? The phone calls with the internet provider? I just can't. The websites he visits and what they say?
A ferret named Harry S. Truman, a dad named Pastor Tommy. We Three Queens that you're just not sure what they are, (sisters, friends, lovers) even til the end, an asexual stoner hipster, and most importantly, Gustavo Tiberius. Hawaiian shirt wearing, scowl face making, Encyclopedia reading, non internetting, non-hipster hipster. I can't wait to listen to this again
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