Book Review: How To Be A Normal Person by TJ Klune

ebook, 290 pages
Published October 16th 2015 by Dreamspinner Press

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?

I’ve read this one back in December of 2015 and I just remember loving it so much back then. Mind you, this is one of the first few books that I’ve read where one of the characters is asexual. Back then, I was not that educated about the term and I still am not the best person to talk about it but I loved that TJ Klune created this such character in the series. Disclaimer though, he’s not the MC. The main character is called Gustavo Tiberius!

Gus’ personality is lovable but there are times that he gets too preachy while most of the time, he is hysterically funny or two high-strung.

Listen, I loved the representation right here but Casey’s asexuality was a bit odd for me because the author boxed him in a way that says since he’s asexual – he will no longer be engaging in anything sexual. Like what I said, it was just odd for me.

Pastor Tommy’s moments (the MC’s dad) are my favorite moments. Then there’s the whole debacle about “We The Queens” – I loved them and the characterization was just pure genius! The call center calls are very funny at the beginning but they’ve become repetitive overtime.

TJ Klune’s humor for me is mostly a hit, but there are times in this book that it is almost crude for me. Overall, this one is fun. King of long for its plot but fun altogether.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

About The Author
TJ KLUNE is a Lambda Literary Award-winning author (Into This River I Drown) and an ex-claims examiner for an insurance company. His novels include the Green Creek series, The House on the Cerulean Sea and The Exraordinaries. Being queer himself, TJ believes it’s important–now more than ever–to have accurate, positive, queer representation in stories.


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