The Road to Transition
Sarah was destroyed by Steven, now Bree is ready to take her rightful place in the world. This novel chronicles the 40 days before her surgery, interspersed with her most distressing memories of the last 55 years of her life. This is the transition of everything.
I love the way that the blurb labels this as a ‘gender confirmation surgery’. It’s not a reassignment surgery, which implies that there is something weird about it. I think it is very difficult to properly convey the feeling of both relief and confusion when someone takes their identified form. I would really like this novel to have a bit more after the form change, but it’s limited in pages to explore everything.
While the imagery was beautiful, I needed more substance. I could have had more of everything, particularly more about Bree’s relationship with her Wife. When a transition takes place, it often rips apart families, particularly as people who never thought they were gay suddenly find themselves with a same-sex partner. I find that that usually raises a really interesting question.
It had potential I think, but could have done with significantly more editing to improve the flow. It feels a little like the journal was just plucked up and turned into a novel without much thought of how a reader would enjoy having the storyline presented to them.
I’ve hit a lot of splashback in the past from people feeling like I haven’t thought as the author/their cousin/aunt/mother as a real person with a true terrible journey. Let me be clear – I am not criticising the author’s life (how should I know what parts haven’t been included?), simply the literary construction of the novel.
I read this one night that I was suffering insomnia. It kept my attention because I couldn’t sleep, but it wasn’t that great. However, this was so so much better than when Adam became Audrey. That’s written from the perspective of the partner of the transitioning person, and it’s absolutely horrible. I can’t warn people away from it enough. This is a good book in comparison.