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SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED by Arin Andrews

SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED

The Not-So-Secret Life of a Transgender Teen

by Arin Andrews

Pub Date: Sept. 30th, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-4814-1675-7
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

In a plainspoken and sometimes-humorous memoir, transgender teenager Andrews discusses his life so far.

Andrews received national recognition when he was profiled on television’s Inside Edition as one half of a transgender teen couple (the other half, Katie Rain Hill, has written her own memoir, Rethinking Normal). In a conversational tone, the author describes events from his childhood and teen years: dating a girl of whom his parents disapproved, first encountering the concept of being transgender in a series of YouTube videos, and most significantly, dating and falling in love with Katie Hill, a transgender teen girl whose profile in a local newspaper had helped inspire him to transition himself. Perhaps an unintentional consequence of the simultaneous publication of Hill’s and Andrews’ memoirs after the two have ended their romantic relationship is that readers see many of the same incidents in both books—a failed family ski trip, a first sexual experience, Katie’s eventual choice to date someone else—recounted from vastly different perspectives. Here, Andrews’ tone when writing about the relationship is largely reverent, and background information about societal gender expectations and physical transition processes fit in easily among typical teenage concerns like love, heartbreak and prom.

Friendly and informative.

(Memoir. 12 & up)