Book Review: Normal by Graeme Cameron


As the Halloween read-a-thon is well and truly underway, I can happily tick this book off my TBR.

Challenge: Read a horror or thriller where real people are the ones causing all the scariness.

From the back cover:

He lives on your street, in a nice house with a tidy garden. He shops at your local supermarket. He drives beside you, waving to let you in to the lane ahead of him.

He also has an elaborate cage in a secret basement. The food he’s shopping for is to feed a young woman he’s holding there against her will – one in a string of many, unaware of the fate that awaits her.

This is how it’s been for a long time.

It’s normal…and it works.


But this time it’s different.

My Thoughts:

This is most definitely a serial killer thriller that stands out in a crowd, separate from its counterparts due to its originality and its humour.

This book is written in an almost chatty, light-hearted tone, from the point of view of the serial killer, who’s name we don’t actually learn, which in itself is quite clever. He’s just an “ordinary guy”, he could be anyone – John, Dave, Phil, Ben, the guy at the supermarket, the guy in the gym, anyone. What makes this book interesting is you should immediately dislike him, but you don’t. He is in fact, very likeable, except for the whole killing people part.

There’s a few parts in the book where this guy is socialising and you almost forget that he could kidnap and kill at any moment. With one of his victims, Erica, who he keeps locked in the basement for several months, he appears friendly at times, they build a weird sort of ‘friendship’, it’s all a bit odd but thoroughly entertaining.

I really enjoyed the humour throughout this book, it’s not every day a serial killer makes you laugh out loud.

“His name was Jeremy and by two in the morning, when I finally removed the last of the stains from the carpet, I’d grown to dislike him intensely. He seemed to me grossly egotistical and of low moral standing.”

Wait just a minute, did a serial killer just refer to someone else as a person of low moral standing, a guy that hunts woman like some kind of blood-sport has the cheek to call someone else egotistical. It’s almost like this guy is having a general conversation with you and causally throws in, “when I finally removed the last of the [blood] stains from the carpet”, – he’s such a likeable guy, it’s such a shame he’s a serial killer; Cameron created a great antihero.

If you don’t quite get what I mean, think of Dexter – the TV Crime series, where Dexter Morgan works for the police as a blood splatter expert who doesn’t just help solve murders, but commits them too. Dexter is a serial killer but so likeable, in fact you end up hoping he doesn’t get caught. That’s the gist of this book, as things begin to get complicated towards the end, you find yourself almost hoping this serial killer can get out of his predicament unscathed.

This is a fun entertaining read for fans of dark humour.

This book is available to buy from: Amazon UK

17 thoughts on “Book Review: Normal by Graeme Cameron

  1. It’s scary to think that a serial killer is a normal likable guy. How to keep ourselves protected if we can’t judge the person by look. Excellent review!


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