Friday, March 25, 2011

I AM J by Cris Beam

J has always known he was different.  Now almost eighteen he has decided it is time to commit to who he really is and make the fact clear to his parents and his best friend Melissa.

J was born Jeni Silver.  His parents have always seen him as their little girl, but J knows deep inside that though his body may be female, he is truly male.  Transgender to be exact. 

After spending most of his life attempting to ignore the betrayal of his body, J is determined to take the steps necessary to become his true self.  He wants his parents and his best friend to come to terms with and accept him as transgender, but even if they don't, he will find a way to get the injections of the testosterone that will lower his voice, stimulate facial hair growth, and help him develop the male attributes that will make him be the person he believes he truly is.

Author Cris Beam takes a difficult subject and creates a book that will help readers understand the physical and emotional turmoil of one transgender boy.  She is able to explain J's gender frustration from an early age, his secret crush on his long-time friend, the constant jeers and taunts from fellow high school students, and the fear of disappointing his parents who sacrificed much for their daughter.  Readers will experience J's self-discovery, his courage, and his determination in facing the long, hard path before him.

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