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Very good explanation of gender identity and the conflict society has accepting a girl born into a boy's body. Grayson should be thankful she was born in this time and not decades earlier. Society needs to find grace to accept these persons for who they are.
GRACEFULLY GRAYSON belongs to that particular category of books that make you both happy and sad.
Grayson is a boy. But he likes all things initially made for girls – dresses, skirts, bracelets, necklaces, hairclips, etc. This is a part of him that he feels he needs to keep secret, but he hates the secrecy, because it eats at his heart and soul.
So he decides to audition for the role of Persephone in the school play. But what if he gets the role? He will have to wear a dress… What will his aunt and uncle say? What will his classmates say? What will happen then?
Written in a simple but admirable language suited for young readers, GRACEFULLY GRAYSON explores themes such as gender fluidity, acceptance, belonging and courage. Part of me finds it slightly underwhelming that the author only mentions Grayson’s preference for girl clothing without expressly mentioning anything about gender fluidity, especially since this is a gender identity that young people should be aware exists and understand the meaning of.
But another part of me is perfectly at peace with Ami Polonsky not labelling Grayson in any LGBTQIA+ way, since Grayson himself does not exactly know why he likes girl clothing and mentally associates more with girls than boys.
In any case, this is a beautifully moving novel. It made me realize we should indeed publish more diverse stories for pre-teens. A little bit repetitive, but the lyrical writing was enough to lessen my notice of that.
I’m really happy I gave this book a chance, especially since I did not particularly enjoy this author’s new release THREADS, so I sure hoped she would redeem herself to me with this. And she did. Go Ami Polonsky! I’m curious to see what you will entice us with next.
I recently read a great book: Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky. Grayson Sender has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever: “he” is a girl on the inside, stuck in the wrong gender’s body. The weight of this secret is crushing, but sharing it would mean facing ridicule, scorn, rejection, or worse. Despite the risks, Grayson’s true self itches to break free. He decides to audition for the school play—and for the lead role, the goddess Persephone.
This book was wonderful! It was an easy read, well-paced and never boring. Polonsky keeps you engaged and seems to effortlessly write about a topic we don’t see too much of. It makes readers think. I know I did. What if I couldn’t be who am I? What if I couldn’t wear what I wanted to wear? How would I feel if I was rejected, or even attacked, for who I am?
Very nice book. I needed a book for school so I bought this. Only thing is if you are a closeted trans person you may not want to show your parents the book as you can tell it is about being trans from just reading the back. You may get questioned why you bought the book.
I discovered your book thanks to Brian Katcher's review which was enough to peek my curiosity. Also, the fact that I am a transgender woman was enough to move your book to the top of my reading list. I will admit that I do hold very high standards when it comes to transgender characters. I always have an initial pang of fear when someone who is not transgender makes the attempt to bring to life a character such as Grayson. In the case of Ami Polonsky, she was successful. I believed and cared about Grayson and her struggle to figure out who she was. She was not just a boy named Grayson and the movement towards the play with the revelation on the side for the character fleshed out the struggle and made it believable. The only complaint I have about the novel is that I didn't want it to stop. I wanted to she her fully emerge from Hades as Persephone. Despite that, the book was a good read and I recommend it.
I loved it, it was so well written. And I admire an author that can write about something that is not usually a topic. My one comment was the ending. It just ended in a place that felt so random, a place where I was thinking “there has to be more”. I think that Grayson should have declared that he wanted to be a girl, instead of just ending where he know he was a girl. But other than that amazing book, I would recommend it.as a middle school and upper must read.