Gay & Lesbian Services of Western New York

Trans Books

If you’re a trans youth and want to suggest books to add (or remove) from our listing, please email us at glyswny@gmail.com with “Books” in the subject line.

Stone Butch Blues by Leslie Feinberg
from Wikipedia: Stone Butch Blues is a novel written by a transgender activist Leslie Feinberg.  The novel won the 1994 Stonewall Book Award.  It tells the story of the life of a butch named Jess Goldber and the trails and tribulations she faces growing up in the pre-Stonewall era.  Published in 1993, the novel became an underground hit before surfacing into mainstream literature.  It is generally regarded as a groundbreaking work on the subject of gender and is one of the best known pieces of LGBT literature.  The novel is also prominent portrait of Butch and Femme Culture in the late 1960’s as well as a coming of age story of Jess, a Jewish working class butch who runs off from home as a teenager and becomes part of gay subculture.

Trans-Sister Radio by Chris Bohjalian
From Bookreporter: http://www.bookreporter.com/reviews/0375705171.asp

True Selves: Understanding Transsexualism by Mildred Brown and Chloe Ann Rounsley
 From Booklist: Brown and Rounsley’s solidly based introduction to many aspects of living as a transsexual provides general information about the dilemma of feeling trapped in the wrong physical gender, about such a person’s development, and about locating a gender therapist.  Brown and Rounsley also detail the process of transition between genders, starting with legal and identity changes and proceeding to changing outward modes of self presentation (they include sample “coming-out” letters to employers, coworkers, friends, and family members) and dealing with bathroom issues, hormone treatments, surgical options, and guidelines for finding social support.  First-person accounts from transsexuals augment general readability and put human faces on the issues discussed. Whitney Scott

She’s Not There: A Life in Two Genders by Jennifer Finney Boylan
From Booklist: Boylan, English professor and author of the critically acclaimed novels The Constellations (1994), The Planets (1991), and Getting In (1998), began life as a male named James Boylan. In this autobiography, she details her lifelong struggle with her burgeoning femaleness and the path she followed to become a female, both physically and mentally. For 40 years, the author lived as a man, seemingly happy and even marrying a woman and fathering two children. At a certain point, though, she realized that she couldn’t suppress her desire to live as a female and so eventually went through all the steps to become female, including sexual reassignment surgery. There is something troubling about Boylan’s lighthearted tone, and while she hints at it, there is no really clear depiction of the havoc this transition must have wreaked on her married life (Boylan’s wife was clearly devastated) and on her children (who at times refer to her as boygirl or maddy). But Boylan’s well-written and informative book is a worthy contribution to the body of work on this subject. Kathleen Hughes Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Parrotfish by Ellen Wittlinger
From School Library Journal Grade 9 Up—As in Hard Love (S & S, 1999), Wittlinger tackles GLBT issues, introducing readers to Grady McNair, formerly known as Angela. This fast read follows Grady through the days between Thanksgiving and Christmas as he comes out as transgendered, faces issues of acceptance and rejection at school and at home, and falls in love with the hottest girl in school. Funny and thought-provoking in turns, the book does suffer from a few structural problems. The narrator’s voice is very feminine for somebody who has internally always felt like a boy, and with little effort on his part, Grady ends the book with family approval, new and old friends, a previously forbidden pet, and the end of an embarrassing family holiday tradition. Flaws aside, the book is an excellent resource for building awareness about, and serving the increasing number of, transgendered teens. Helpful resources include Web sites and further-reading material. The lack of similar titles available, except for Julie Ann Peters’s Luna (Little, Brown, 2004), and Wittlinger’s captivating storytelling ability combine to make this a book that most libraries should stock. Grady eventually decides that he will always straddle the 50 yard line of gender, and the book should help teens be comfortable with their own place on that football field. Cara von Wrangel Kinsey, New York Public Library Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Luna by Julie Anne Peters
From School Library Journal: Grade 9 Up-“Yeah, I loved her. I couldn’t help it. She was my brother.” Regan has always been there for her transgender brother, Liam, sacrificing her needs for his, but when he announces that he is ready to “transition” into Luna permanently, Regan is not sure she can handle the consequences. She has been his confidant all her life, letting Luna dress in her room, buying underwear for her when Liam couldn’t, and giving support. However, when the attractive new guy in chemistry class shows an interest in Regan, she wishes her sibling would just go away and give her a chance to live her own life. Liam realizes that in order for his sister to be free, he, too, must free himself to become the woman who lives inside him. Told from Regan’s point of view in the present and in flashback, this novel breaks new ground in YA literature with a sensitive and poignant portrayal of a young man’s determination to live his true identity and his family’s struggle to accept Luna for who she really is. Betty S. Evans, Southwest Missouri State University, Springfield Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s