Peta Lyre's Rating Normal
Anna Whateley
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
ISBN: 9781760525309
Awards Year: 2021
Category: Book of the Year: Older Readers
The publisher says...

At sixteen, neurodivergent Peta Lyre is the success story of social training. That is, until she finds herself on a school ski trip - and falling in love with the new girl. Peta will need to decide which rules to keep, and which rules to break. 

'I'm Peta Lyre,' I mumble. Look people in the eye if you can, at least when you greet them. I try, but it's hard when she is smiling so big, and leaning in. Peta Lyre is far from typical. The world she lives in isn't designed for the way her mind works, but when she follows her therapist's rules for 'normal' behaviour, she can almost fit in without attracting attention. When a new girl, Sam, starts at school, Peta's carefully structured routines start to crack. But on the school ski trip, with romance blooming and a newfound confidence, she starts to wonder if maybe she can have a normal life after all. When things fall apart, Peta must decide whether all the old rules still matter. Does she want a life less ordinary, or should she keep her rating normal? A moving and joyful own voices debut. 

The CBCA judges say...

This is an incredible debut from an #ownvoices author who skilfully creates an authentic story about a neurodiverse teenager. It offers a frank and personal insight into the struggles felt by Peta as she navigates her life. The novel rides a perfect line between being accessible and deep, and while it is humorous, there is a layer of complexity and truth shining through. The book’s structure and use of language is spot on. The mood of the book is sustained consistently with her narration as readers chart her character growth. This is the kind of book that we need our young people to read. Peta Lyre is flawed, but she offers a fresh perspective that could be eye-opening for many young people. Her character is perfectly executed in a way that is sure to engage readers, and the mood of the book is sustained consistently with her narration as we chart her character growth. Whateley’s narrative voice adds a layer of complexity and truth that shines throughout the novel. Highly compelling, intensely moving and ultimately hopeful, this book heralds the arrival of a talented new young adult author.

Teaching Notes for this book...

The publisher has generously made teaching notes available for this book. Click on the icon below to view these resources.