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Parrotfish Needed an Update: The Rapidly Changing Language of Transgender Awareness

A decade ago, I wrote Parrotfish, the first young adult novel with a transgender protagonist. At the time I wrote it, most of my (middle-aged) friends didn’t understand the meaning of the word transgender. They guessed that it meant cross-dresser or drag queen, but the topic was not one that straight, mainstream Americans thought about, […]

Review of Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out

Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out by Susan Kuklin High School    Candlewick    182 pp. 2/14    978-0-7636-5611-9    $22.99 e-book ed.  978-0-7636-7035-1    $22.99 Rather than attempting to convey the spectrum of transgender experience through a multitude of voices, Kuklin tries something different here, focusing on just six young people whose gender identity is something other than what […]

The Genre of Gender: The Emerging Canon of Transgender-Inclusive YA Literature

Contemporary young adult literature is a remarkably open universe, integrating controversial subjects and allowing topics earlier considered inappropriate for teen readers to become legitimate areas of exploration, conversation, and debate. Today’s teen readers are accustomed to novels containing drinking and drug use, gay and lesbian characters, active sexuality, teen pregnancy, and violence. Yet all of […]