Thursday, July 6, 2017

If I Was Your Girl

If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo - 288 Pages

This award-winning novel is a poignant portrayal of a trans girl that manages to challenge boundaries while still residing within the bounds of a typical young adult novel. Amanda Hardy has moved in with her estranged father, who lives in a small, secluded town in the deep South, after being attacked for using a public women's restroom. Amanda, who has gone through surgery and hormonal therapy, is now at a point where she can "stealth": a term used to refer to a transgender individual unquestionably passing for the gender they identify with. She begins to have a regular high school experience - one free from bullying and violence - making friends and falling in love with one of the school's football players. Russo - a trans woman herself, who has an excellent author's note at the end of the book explaining the creative liberties she took to make Amanda's story easier to understand by non-trans folks - deftly explores what it means to be yourself in high school, and how that can be particularly dangerous for those that society has pushed to the margins.

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