Posted in Book Reviews

A Different Sort of Normal – Abigail Balfe

Disclaimer: The book format in which I am reviewing this, was purchased by myself, with my own money. I was NOT given a copy of The book for this review, and this review is not sponsored. I receive no benefits from the links provided in this review, they are used to cite any sourced information, and to where I purchased it.  As with all of my reviews my thoughts and opinions are all my own.

Book Overview

Book synopsis is taken from the Waterstones website. Waterstones link

The beautiful true story of one girl’s journey growing up autistic – and the challenges she faced in the ‘normal’ world. I’m not like the other children in my class… and that’s an actual scientific FACT. Hi! My name is Abigail, and I’m autistic. But I didn’t know I was autistic until I was an adult-sort-of-person*. This is my true story of growing up in the confusing ‘normal’ world, all the while missing some Very Important Information about myself. There’ll be scary moments involving toilets and crowded trains, heart-warming tales of cats and pianos, and funny memories including my dad and a mysterious tub of ice cream. Along the way you’ll also find some Very Crucial Information about autism. If you’ve ever felt different, out of place, like you don’t fit in… this book is for you. * I’ve never really felt like an actual-adult-person, as you’ll soon discover in this book… Told through the author’s remarkable words, and just as remarkable illustrations, this is the book for those who’ve never felt quite right in the ‘normal’ world. Very important, very funny and very informative – this is the book the world needs right now.

Book Release:

July 2021

Format Reviewed:

Audiobook through Amazon Audible Link here

About The Author:

Biography was taken from Penguin books, image from Abigail’s TwitterLink here Link her

Abigail Balfe (Author, Illustrator) Abigail is a Brighton-based writer, illustrator and creative producer. Original storytelling has always been at the heart of Abigail’s career and she has spent a decade leading social media campaigns for some of the biggest TV & entertainment clients in the world. Abigail also used to perform stand-up comedy and won several tiny trophies for her onstage humour; which involved life-size illustrations, ridiculous songs and rambling stories about her family.

My Review:

A different sort of normal was a fantastic read for me to start 2022 with. I’m neurodivergent, although I don’t have Autism, I do have ADHD. If you are familiar with ADHD, you may or may not know that a lot of ADHD symptoms overlap with autism. – and there aren’t very many books out there with ADHD characters. I’m writing one, maybe one day the world will get to read it if I’m lucky enough. So naturally, books surrounding Autism are the closest I can get, and so far I have to say, this is the best one I’ve read. I Instantly felt a connection with Abigail, her brain ticks like mine, and it’s fantastic!  I’m not within the age demographic of which this book was written (I’m 32.) But I’d recommend it for ND adults too. Lots of the experiences that Abigail discusses with growing up I can strongly relate to, and I wish little me who struggled growing up, had this book to read. I instantly felt like someone else understands me without having to say anything. – even with my phobia of public toilets, and having to use them at school! Abigail is a fresh voice for ND children and adults, as she says, there are thousands of others like us, so we can’t be that strange. Thank you for helping me and lots of others to feel proud of our neurodiverse brains, and helping us being able to see that the positives outweigh the negatives.


5 Stars



Writer, Gamer, Reader, Parent, Creative Writing student.

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