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Book Review 'Normal Or Nothing Like It' By Wayne Tunks

A compilation of short stories is not usually my go to read. I became an instant fan of this author after recently discovering a local radio station where he hosts the breakfast show. When I found out Wayne had published a book, I simply had to check it out. I was not disappointed.

Here is the blurb;

In these sixteen interwoven short stories, we meet a group of 40-year-olds learning to deal with the things life throws at them while trying to juggle their jobs, family and personal connections. And while finally learning to be their true selves, they’re also discovering whether they are normal or nothing like it.

In this book of short interwoven stories, we meet a wonderful group of diverse characters, all facing their own mid-life personal issues.

Being in my naughty forties myself, so many of the stories resonated with me. I laughed, I cried, and I said, 'Oh, I can relate to that’ on more than one occasion.

Wayne has created real relatable characters who are flawed and vulnerable, just like the rest of us. You are instantly drawn into their stories, their struggles, their triumphs, their relationships, and their heartache. You are instantly invested in the characters from the get go.

The author explores many themes including relationships, friendships, sexuality, love, prejudice, acceptance, lust, and loss, to name a few.

I love the LGBTQI+ representation in this book. Ravi’s story broke my heart. I wanted to reach into the pages and give him a huge hug.

One of the stories reminded me of the dark period in my life where I had not long lost my wonderful father, had turned the big 40 and was miserable in my marriage. I realised I was drinking too much and found myself talking to our four cats more than my husband at the time.

When we reach our forties, we face many challenges in life, and often assess what it is we want before our time runs out. Wayne has done a remarkable job bringing this book and its characters to life.

I really enjoyed this book. It is always lovely to read stories set in your own city. I enjoyed seeing Sydney represented in the book. I promise you that you will find a story or character you can relate to. I look forward to reading more from Wayne in the future.

I am really looking forward to interviewing Wayne on ‘The Write Words Podcast’ very soon.

I give it four stars.

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