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A Normal Family

Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9781913183134

Price: £16.99

ON SALE: 14th July 2022

Genre: Health & Personal Development

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5* ‘A
jaw-dropping memoir’ – THE TELEGRAPH

‘One of the maddest memoirs you’ll read this year… a beautiful, warm, funny book.’ –The Times

‘Extraordinary’ -The Guardian

‘A wholly absorbing page-turner that everyone will want to read. You should probably buy two.’ –Kirkus Starred Review

‘A riveting debut.’ –People Magazine

‘By turns hilarious, wrenching, and achingly tender.’ -Susan Orlean, New York Times bestselling author

‘A remarkable and wise book, two memoirs braided together with such tendresse that readers will come to believe the ironic title in earnest’ –LA TIMES

‘Riveting and hilariously funny’ – The Times

For most of her life, Chrysta Bilton was one member of a small, if dysfunctional, family of four. There was her sister, Kaitlyn, her hedonistic, glamorous, gay mum Debra, and Jeffrey, who Debra hand-picked, in an LA hairdressers, to be the father of her children. During Chrysta’s unstable childhood, Debra struggled to keep the family afloat and Jeffrey wandered in and out of their lives.

Then, in her twenties, Chrysta discovered that her father had secretly donated his sperm over 500 times – and that she had at least 35 other siblings.

A Normal Family is a captivating coming-of-age memoir about Chrysta’s reckoning with the secrets both parents had carefully kept from her. Heartfelt, warm and funny, it’s a story of embracing the family we have, in all the forms we find it.


I thought my family was complicated until I read Chrysta Bilton's wonderful memoir about the unique collection of irresistible characters in her life. Bilton has a big heart, gentle wisdom, keen eye and lovely wit. She's a gifted writer with an astonishing story to tell.
David Sheff, author of Beautiful Boy
By turns hilarious, wrenching, and achingly tender, this is a memoir about family that turns the whole idea of family upside down. Bilton writes beautifully, with sharp insight and a light touch, about her harrowing, astonishing journey into understanding her parents, her (very) extended family, and herself.
Susan Orlean, New York Times bestselling author of 'On Animals' and 'Rin Tin Tin'
A Normal Family had me absolutely riveted from beginning to end. Chrysta Bilton has woven an impeccable narrative about the explosion of love, betrayal, addiction, and menagerie of animals that made up her madcap and calamitous childhood. The story is dominated by Bilton's hedonistic, cult-inclined, womanizing, unstable and uncanny lesbian single mother, who had to make it up as she went along, and is surely one of the most mesmerizing "characters" in recent memoir. A Normal Family narrowly escapes being a tragedy, redeemed by Bilton's compassionate storytelling and unwavering love for her untraditional family.
Stephanie Danler, author of 'Sweetbitter'
It's hard to put into words the many ways this book spoke to me. Normal Family reads like a thriller with its core mystery being the very meaning of life itself: vividly specific but also universal, with family as protagonist and antagonist, but always the hero.
Ry Russo-Young, filmmaker (Nuclear Family)
Chrysta Bilton's astonishing, wildly unpredictable memoir Normal Family starts out as rollicking and suspenseful and only ramps up from there, becoming by turns frightening, riotously funny, and finally quite moving.
Robert Kolker, New York Times bestselling author of 'Hidden Valley Road'
A wholly absorbing page-turner that everyone will want to read. You should probably buy two.
Eloquently written and compulsively readable, Bilton's jaw-dropping coming-of-age memoir-and the love and survival found within its pages-is one readers won't soon forget.
Library Journal
A remarkable and wise book, two memoirs braided together with such tendresse that readers will come to believe the ironic title in earnest
LA Times
An ebullient debut that proves it's love, not DNA, that makes a family
PEOPLE magazine
Bilton's twisty life story is fascinating, and her eye for detail and ability to plumb her painful past for meaning make this a riveting debut.
PEOPLE magazine
This beautiful, warm, funny book is a testament to human resilience, forgiveness and humour. It is also a love letter to an extraordinary mother.
The Times
Is there anything original left to say about surviving a dysfunctional upbringing? A Normal Family by Chrysta Bilton takes this question almost as a dare.
Vulnerable and omniscient
The Guardian
5* - A jaw-dropping memoir
The Telegraph
One of the maddest memoirs you'll read this year... a beautiful, warm, funny book.
The Times