Growing up gay, I found very few books about the gay experience. I think it was late into my senior year in high school when I finally got around to grudgingly reading some Danton Remoto, and it was only four years ago that I finally got to read gay classics like James Baldwin’s “Giovanni’s Room” or E.M. Forster’s “Maurice“.
While I didn’t exactly have a difficult gay childhood, I sometimes wish that I had these books around when I was grappling with my sexuality. I feel like it would have made things so much easier for me and probably shortened my time in the closet considerably.
But if I had any trouble, I’d think it wold be so much more difficult for transgendered teens. I don’t think the transgendered experience has been written about a whole lot, and I am struggling to think of a book in the Western canon that does so.
Which is why it’s a good thing that there are now books coming out that tackle this particular experience. In 2004, we had Julie Ann Peters’ “Luna“. And just recently, Brian Kathcer’s “Almost Perfect” won the Stonewall’s Children and Young Adult Literature Award, given out at this year’s Newberry Awards. Of course I had to get a copy.
I know, I know. I’ve been remiss with my blogging duties, and so early in the game as well. But it’s been a mostly crazy few days at work and with my personal life and I haven’t been able to spare some time for the old book blog.
I did, however, have time to do some book shopping.
As most of you guys know, Brian Katcher’s “Almost Perfect” won this year’s Stonewall’s Children and Young Adult Literature Award, so finding it on the local bookshelves was a pretty good signal for me to buy it. I’m looking forward to reading it and seeing what the buzz is about.
I also got myself a copy of Stephen Chbosky’s “The Perks of Being a Wallflower“. I’ve heard about this book countless times from so many people, and I’ve been seeing it on bookshelves for about as long. But I’ve never really found a cover that I really liked as much as this one. And this copy’s cheaper than the other editions!
But the most important thing I did the past week was finally finish reading Scott Westerfeld’s “Behemoth“, the second book in his “Leviathan” series.
Here’s what I hope will be a weekly roundup of book events and news happening all over the world.
THE NEWBERRY AWARDS were given out several days ago, with the prize going to debut novelist Clare Vanderpool for her work “Moon Over Manifest“. However, the book that caught my interest was Brian Katcher’s “Almost Perfect“, which won this year’s Stonewall’s Children and Young Adult Literature Award. It’s about a high school senior who finds himself attracted to someone transition from male to female, and I have to say that aside from Julie Ann Peters’ “Luna“, this is only the second YA book that I know of that deals with the subject. (Source)
“60 YEARS LATER: COMING THROUGH THE RYE” is actually going to be published and distributed. If you don’t know what that is, it’s that long-rumored sequel to “The Catcher In The Rye” that J.D. Salinger did not write. In it, a Holden Caulfield rip-off is now geriatric and escapes from a nursing home. I feel like this is going to be horrible…but I wouldn’t mind being given a copy. (Source)
I have all the books in “The Millenium Trilogy“, and one day I will get down to reading all three of them. Someday I will also get around to watching the movie adaptations, but for the meantime I will enjoy looking at Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander in David Fincher’s adaptation of the books. (Source)