Eleven-year-old Elinor Malcolm just wants to be normal. Lonely, she goes in search of her best self and a best friend.
In Elinormal, her bossy mom threatens to sue if Elinor is not granted a spot in a prestigious ballet academy. The problem is, Elinor has no interest in ballet. While sitting out the first class in an area park she meets Indira who helps her realize that she is a capable and kind individual. Elinor opens up and makes a friend at school who enjoys all the same things she does. The people in her life finally converge—secret identities are revealed, and Elinor has an epiphany about the nature of relationships and the power of love.
In the sequel, New Girl: The Further Adventures of Elinormal, Elinor is ready for the first day of seventh grade when a last-minute phone call turns her world upside down. She misses the first week of school and when she gets back she’s called “the new girl” even though she’s not. Elinor quickly learns that people are complicated and relationships take work. Lots of work. As she discovers who she is, who she wants to be, and what she wants most in life, she struggles to balance friendships, both old and new, while also unraveling her mother’s mysterious past.
Both of these delightful books explore the complexity of friendships, the reality of disappointments, and the trouble with secrets.