Mini Reviews: Recent Favorites by Trans & Nonbinary Authors

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders This was an incredible reading experience! I loved the writing, I was fully invested in the characters, and I felt like I was part of its world. The blend of the scientific and the magical, sci-fi and fantasy, was super cool. The plot was exciting, but Anders also took the time to flesh out deeper themes such as loneliness. I know others have complained about the ending, but I felt like everything came full circle in a lovely, very satisfying way. . The Merry Spinster: Tales of Everyday Horror by Daniel Mallory Ortberg I read this in one day, pretty much straight through! I couldn't get enough and wish the…

0 Comments

Little Fish by Casey Plett

After reading Casey Plett's short story collection A Safe Girl to Love, which you can download for free on her website, I knew she'd forever be on my "authors I automatically read" list. I pre-ordered her new novel, Little Fish, so I could read it right away, and it exceeded all my expectations. "Wendy Reimer is a thirty-year-old trans woman who comes across evidence that her late grandfather—a devout Mennonite farmer—might have been transgender himself." This story is perfection. It's honest and raw, with characters (and dialogue!) that are so realistic, I felt like I was right there inside the story. It was like being a silent, unnamed member of this circle of friends. I laughed with these characters, I was angry…

0 Comments

A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns by Archie Bongiovanni & Tristan Jimerson

This comic guide with a goofy, gently sarcastic sense of humor is all about gender neutral pronouns - how being misgendered feels, why pronouns matter, grammar, and examples of how to use these pronouns in real life. I was so glad the authors encouraged people to try to make their everyday language more inclusive by dropping words like ma'am, sir, guys, ladies, etc. and defaulting to "person" instead of assuming "man" or "woman" when speaking about someone you don't know. I wish the authors had addressed grammar pedants who get in a tizzy about singular they/them. They kind of allude to it when someone says "that just doesn't sound right to me", but this is such a common occurrence. I…

0 Comments

Long Macchiatos and Monsters by Alison Evans

Did I just read a romance - that I liked? Apparently I did. At this point, I'm pretty certain Alison Evans can write anything and I'll read it. Their writing is so beautiful and natural and honestly, a true pleasure to read. Long Macchiatos and Monsters is #ownvoices with a sweet storyline and interesting main characters; a trans guy and a genderqueer person, both POC with disabilities, who are in that whirlwind "just fell in love" stage. The story is completely outside of heteronormativity and that's both refreshing and wonderful. I'm off to read Ida next! Source: I purchased a copy of this book.

0 Comments

Lost Boy, Found Boy by Jenn Polish

I'm not really into fantasy, but I couldn't resist giving this retelling of Peter Pan a try. Technology plus a dystopian feel? That sounds more like sci-fi to me, the kind of book I reach for! Polish holds true to many of the original Peter Pan character representations and themes, but I wish it hadn't been quite as obvious as it was. Maybe in a longer work there would have been time to allow the reader to figure it out on their own. This was a fast, page-turner kind of read, but it also bordered on feeling rushed. I would have loved a longer book with more detail and more background. I had a lot of questions about the world…

0 Comments

Transforming by Austen Hartke

Austen Hartke has an easy, conversational style whether he's inspecting Scripture and its historical and cultural contexts or sharing personal stories. Hartke includes conversations with and the experiences of other trans and nonbinary Christians, which ends up giving the book a truly intersectional lens (and that is vital when discussing about trans issues). Transforming is honest about the ways the church has failed trans and nonbinary folx and the challenges they face. Cisgender readers will gain insight and hopefully, empathy. But Hartke's infectious optimism combined with plenty of positive experiences shared give the book a hopeful, "share the good news!" tone throughout. Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.

0 Comments

Margins and Murmurations by Otter Lieffe

Ahhh that moment when a self-published title blows you away! Otter Lieffe's novel Margins and Murmurations was fantastic. It offers diverse queer characters, dystopia, a bit of time travel, and resistance. This novel was super disconcerting because as Lieffe builds this dystopian world for the reader, you realize it has way too many real parallels to our current world. So you get social commentary as a natural part of the world-building. There's a hint of utopia as well: Before the State took control, this society had embraced and been shaped by all kinds of marginalized people. Glimpses of how wonderful that would be gave me hope. Speaking of hope, I have to mention the General (Gus). What an interesting, complex character!…

1 Comment

Review in Quotes: Radical Reads from PM Press

Independent publisher PM Press specializes in "radical and stimulating fiction and nonfiction books" with a leftist (not liberal) bent. I recently enjoyed reading the following two anthologies and went through a ton of post-it flags as I read. Both collections contain essays focusing on families and parenting. I thought I'd share some of my favorite quotes from each, because they best represent how awesome and intersectional each of these titles are. Revolutionary Mothering - Love on the Front Lines edited by Alexis Pauline Gumbs, China Martens, and Mai'a Williams This anthology "centers mothers of color and marginalized mothers’ voices" because "the challenges faced by movements working for anti-violence, anti-imperialist, and queer liberation, as well as racial, economic, reproductive, gender, and food justice…

1 Comment

Beyond Trans by Heath Fogg Davis

When I'm highlighting furiously in the introduction alone, I know things are going to be good! Beyond Trans was fantastic. It's intersectional, radical, and incredibly thought-provoking. Heath Fogg Davis is a biracial trans man, so set aside any fears of yet another white cisgender person debating trans and non-binary existence. Fogg Davis proposes that removing "bureaucratic administration of sex markers" (whether we're talking about government-issued IDs or college admissions or sports teams) is the only way to achieve gender equality. When we think along the binary (allowing trans people to change that marker from male to female, female to male) we're missing the mark. We're ignoring the root of the problem, and we're still discriminating against gender nonconforming people who don't fit in…

4 Comments

Brilliant Imperfection by Eli Clare

Able-bodied people, forget everything you think you believe about health and cure and disability politics, grab a copy of Brilliant Imperfection, and listen to Eli Clare. He covers politics, history, ethics, ableism, gender identity, and more; with all the messy, contradictory intersections that cannot be ignored. Clare's prose is dazzling, the way he states his points so beautiful, that this feels like a mix of nonfiction and poetry. I cannot recommend it highly enough!

0 Comments

End of content

No more pages to load