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Perfectly Norman
Contributor(s): Percival, Tom
ISBN: 1681197855     ISBN-13: 9781681197852
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens Books
    OUR PRICE: $15.30  
Product Type: School And Library
Published: May 2018
Annotation: Norman is thrilled to discover he grew a pair of wings overnight, but his excitement turns to doubt when he realizes he is now different from everyone else, causing him to question whether there is such thing as perfectly normal.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Self-acceptance; Fiction.
Individuality; Fiction.
Wings; Fiction.
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Fiction | Social Issues | Emotions & Feelings
- Juvenile Fiction | Fantasy & Magic
Dewey: [E]
LCCN: 2017047800
Academic/Grade Level: Kindergarten, Ages 5-6
Book type: Easy Fiction
Physical Information: 12.00" H x 9.50" W x 0.25" (1.10 lbs)
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2018 March #2)

When "perfectly normal" Norman grows a pair of brilliant multicolored wings, he does what anyone would do: he tries them out and discovers he loves flying. But he becomes self-conscious of his difference and decides he must keep his wings hidden beneath a heavy coat. The hot, uncomfortable jacket immediately begins to make Norman miserable, keeping him from swimming and playing his favorite games. Finally, it dawns on Norman that it's the coat that is making him unhappy, not the wings. When his parents (an interracial couple) suggest he take it off, he decides to embrace his extraordinary wings. Percival's message is emphasized through the canny use of color as a storytelling mechanism: Norman's world is in greyscale, and, aside from his yellow coat (which can't fully hide the glow of his uniqueness), Norman also appears in black and white. As the wings come out, Norman and everything he's near turns technicolor. The story could have ended with Norman's self-acceptance, but Norman goes on to inspire other children to get rid of their own coats, and, in one glorious colorful spread, they join him in flight. Ages 3–6. Agent: Elinor Cooper, Diamond Kahn and Woods. (May)

Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly.

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

PreS-Gr 2—Percival celebrates the differences among children to challenge the concept of normal. In digital artwork with hand-painted textures, a brilliantly hued Norman stands out in a black-and-white world. He is "perfectly normal" until he grows wings. He hides them under a coat and in a series of vignettes and full-page layouts, Norman becomes increasingly miserable. His white mother and black father recognize that something is wrong, and Percival's illustrations clearly show they're supportive and caring. It is because of their encouragement that Norman finally reveals his wings and flies, which prompts his friends, who are wearing coats of their own, to throw them off and join him in the sky in a vibrant full-color spread. Bold and varying text size along with punctuation provide clever clues for how to read this to best effect, which makes this an ideal selection for storytimes. The repetition of the word normal provides wonderful opportunities for discussion about the meaning of the word. VERDICT A very discussable title for most picture book collections.—Rachel Zuffa, Racine Public Library, WI

Copyright 2018 School Library Journal.