Thursday 28 March 2013

Book Review- Confessions of a Teenage Hermaphrodite by Lianne Simon

Title: Confessions of a Teenage Hermaphrodite
 Author: Lianne Simon
Series:   N/A
Published:  28 September 2012 by MuseItUp
Length: 232 pages
Source: blog tour, Heroines with Heart
Summary : From the heart of an intersex teen, one who must ultimately choose male or female—family or true love—comes the story of a deeply emotional and perilous journey home. This is a young adult novel unlike any other—an authentic portrayal of the issues faced by a child growing up with a sexually ambiguous body.
Jameson can be like other boys after minor surgery and a few years on testosterone Well, at least that’s what his parents always say. But Jamie sees an elfin princess in the mirror, and male hormones would only ruin her pretty face. For him to become the man his parents expect, Jameson must leave behind the hopes and dreams of a little girl. But what is so wrong with Jamie’s dreams that they can’t be her life?

Review: Jamie “Jameson” was born intersex, and raised male and told that it would be very easy, with a little surgery and testosterone, to become male. Despite the fact that she identifies more female than male, and, age sixteen, is told that she should have been raised female. Her parents want a boy. She’s not sure what she wants. This is her adventure through love and life.
Of all the LGBT fiction I have read, not that much details intersex/being outside the male/female gender binary. It’s a really nice change to read one that does.
Being intersex and not knowing where you fit in is dealt with really well. You see a lot of peoples’ views on this, from all perspectives. Mainly conservative, plus Jamie’s questioning.
You really felt for Jamie and everything she was going to. Her dad’s pressuring her to be a boy, giving her a list of things to do as a boy, and her mother doesn’t really do much to support her. Her love life doesn’t go amazingly,  she’s subjected to homophobic slurs when dating a boy while she’s being made to act as a boy, and various other things happen. She does have good friends in the form of people like Tyler, Kaylah, Alice, Lisa and such, and does get happy things happening towards the end.
The religion side in books, I don’t normally enjoy, but it worked here. You could see Jamie and how her faith was deeply tied into her view on things, but was still open minded, looking for acceptance from God. She also has an alter-ego, to go with her feminine side, of the Elfin Princess.
You get really close to Jamie. Maybe not so much to everyone else, but the amount of emotion you feel for Jamie makes up for that. She keeps following her parents, even though that would lead her to do the exact opposite of what she wants, which I find sad for her. You really do want her to come out nicely of this novel.
One thing I had a big problem with was the age side of things. It’s stated explicitly that she’s sixteen, and I’m fine for that. But sometimes, things happen that make you question that. At times, she seems so much younger than she is, other times, older. Throw in things about adopting two kids and marriage and you just get...wait, what age are we looking at here? Ages are something I need to know about characters. Messing about with them messes up my understanding of a whole novel.
It’s very good educationally. The medical stuff is interesting, but may be a bit hard to digest at times. I skipped a bit of the medical stuff because it slowed it down at parts. It’s also educational in terms of attitudes and educational for those of you who haven’t come across the intersex community.

Overall:  Strength 3.5 up to 4 tea to a good book covering multiple issues in a sensitive and emotional way.

1 comment:

  1. this one sounds really interseting, I'll have to check it out for myself, though religion is something that doesnt often sit well with me in books so I'm slightly put off by that but as you said, it worked here so I'll give it a go! Thanks for sharing Nina!


Thanks for taking time to read this!
Comments are much loved.
Nina xxx

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