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Publisher's Summary

Normal is just a setting on the dryer.
High school graduate Jeremey Samson is looking forward to burying his head under the covers and sleeping until it's time to leave for college. Then a tornado named Emmet Washington enters his life. The young man with a double major in math and computer science is handsome, forward, wicked smart, interested in dating Jeremey - and he has autism.
But Jeremey doesn't judge him for that. He's too busy judging himself, as are his parents, who don't believe in things like clinical depression. When Jeremey's untreated illness reaches a critical breaking point, Emmet is the white knight who rescues him and brings him along as a roommate to The Roosevelt, a quirky new assisted living facility.
As Jeremey and Emmet find their feet at The Roosevelt, they begin to believe they can be loved for the men they are beyond their disabilities. But before they can trust enough to fall head over heels, they must trust their own convictions that friendship is a healing force and love can overcome any obstacle.
©2017 Heidi Cullinan (P)2017 Heidi Cullinan
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By HB on 05-31-17

Heidi Cullinan + Iggy Toma = Excellence !!!

I knew from Amazon reviews this would differ from what I think of as a Heidi Cullinan story and still be Amazing!

Loving & Living w/ your quirks & complications and finding the people to help you flourish is pure Heidi. What's different is how little sex/sexuality is the focus of that process here. There is a dark edge in Special Delivery / Love Lessons series that has been replaced w/ a sweetness reminding me of TJ Klune's Bear, Otter & Kid.

In other words, this is a REALLY good book!

As Heidi started exploring w/ "Baz" in Love Lessons, these characters have different mental/physical complications making them hypersensitive and unable to react the way people w/ average sensitivity do. Heidi manages to get across that people under umbrella terms like Autism Spectrum, Depression/Anxiety & Quadriplegia vary not only from person to person, but within each individual's experience over time. She has written very realistic portrayals of these experiences and the benefits/detriments of the visibility/invisibility of the problems involved. She gets across the depths of their difficulties, joys of love without angst & wallowing.

Carry the Ocean is brilliant and memorable, a surprisingly enjoyable book, definitely worth reading! The abundance of characters and media are handled Beautifully by Iggy Toma.

Like Heidi's Love Lessons series, this is a New Adult book.
Also, while her books often head past R into NC17, this just barely escapes PG13.
It gracefully achieves 5 stars anyway.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Belen on 06-11-17


Any additional comments?

I was really impressed with Iggy Toma's performance. I thought he did a good job portraying Emmet's ("almost robotic") and Jeremey's (sometimes anxious) particular tones of voice.

I loved the audio. Sure, it's definitely an extension of the love I feel for this story (which topped my faves of 2015 and remains one of my favorites of all time), but I think even if you hadn't read the story and only listened this still completely works.

I was a little worried because there is a lot of texting in the story, but Toma handles it all organically and brilliantly.

This is a terrific love story about finding acceptance in (sometimes) the most unlikely places. I love this story even more with the narration.

If you were in the fence about it? Don't be! Absolutely recommended!

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Harry Taylor on 08-05-17

What's Normal!!!

The reader captures the three main individuals in this story brilliantly. One is the crude jock who has more empathy than you could imagine. The second is the anxious depressive who's afraid to venture forth. The third is Autistic and I feel is the best portrayed of all by the reader. It is about what turns out to be a gay couple but I hardly noticed that bit apart from the rather blunt factual way Emmet talks about sex but then that is his autism not gratuitous sex.
When I did my teacher training we had a book called The Normal Child to study. I only remember the opening sentence after nearly 50 years. It read. There is no such thing as a normal child! Heidi Cullinan just says it better. I've got more touchy feelly in my older years and have learnt to laugh and weep easier. Her books and characters have made me do both with gay abandon

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5 out of 5 stars
By BevS on 06-06-17


Has gone straight onto my Awesome Audio Narration bookshelf, I think it's the best thing Iggy's done [that I've listened to]....other than Nowhere Ranch and the Love Lessons series. His interpretation of Emmet was spot on....slightly stilted, quirky and with underlying humour. Jeremey was also wonderful, softly spoken, tremulous at times when he got really nervous. David was exactly right....well, let's cut to the chase shall we?? JUST EVERYTHING ABOUT IT WAS MAGNIFICENT!! An outstanding audio book for my #1 book of 2015!! Congrats to all concerned.

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