Parrotfish

Parrotfish

Book - 2011
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Grady, a transgendered high school student, yearns for acceptance by his classmates and family as he struggles to adjust to his new identity as a male.
Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2011
Edition: 1st Simon & Schuster paperback ed
ISBN: 9781442406216
1442406216
Branch Call Number: Teen Wit
Characteristics: 294 p. ; 21 cm
Alternative Title: Parrot fish

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BUNBUN1978
Aug 13, 2015

I first read this book some years ago when it was new. I have since read it a few more times. I think there a better books out there a trans men. however this one is pretty good. the only part that annoyed me was Grady's imagined conversations in his head. I also thought the end was a bit to wrapped up.

PrimaGigi Jul 19, 2015

There has been an uptick for wanting and needing a more diversified YA universe. Yes, there is a lack of multifaceted, multilingual, different sexed, racial, or ungendered Hero/ine's. As a result of pretty much no diverse authors; Parrotfish is exactly the type of example of why these narratives should be handled with more finesse, by someone who truly understands the material they are undertaking.

I don't know if this book is a ploy to cash in on the market or an underdeveloped gem -that is still trying to cash in- that was rushed to meet demand. The story is about Angela McNair transitioning into Grady McNair. The story and characters are just a hodgepodge of what the other assumes a diverse set of characters would be. Grady is selfish, his sister and brother are selfish, the mom is overbearing and the dad is oblivious. Grady has it set that everyone is secretly uncomfortable or hates him. Without any proof to the latter. There is a super- Bitch, A social justice white knight and a girl who is a love interest, but is only defined by her ethnicity. It's the same slapdash tween soap opera with a "open-minded" bent. It seems that for everything it was trying not to be it was.

Gender is a social construct. It's a narrow representation of what society believe makes up the traits of a female and a male. Sex is genitalia of that differentiates a man from a woman. It's commonly misunderstood that sex and gender are one and the same. A transgendered person is the contrast to the notions of gender ideals. They are deconstructing and redefining gender-roles. Fish don't change gender, so that isn't applicable to Grady's situation. There seemed to be lots of moments where gender ideals where thought to define Grady as a real boy, from the clothing to the actions and movements. While emphasizing the point many times of his former femaleness suggesting that that combined with being a boy now made him different from other men. A friend of Grady mentions how its much easier to emotionally speak to him, since he's not a boy-boy. It derails the underlying point of the book that roles aren't real. That both genders' can play both of the roles without it being about one's sex.

How women were written in this book where another issue entirely. Grady's mother is controlling. From controlling her sisters lifestyles (as if all women who are mother's seem to be overbearing and obnoxious) "suggesting" her sister have a child, then reminding her how hard it is to raise one on her own. Couldn't the idea that not all women need or want a child for someone else's normalcy? The way Grady described his former femalehood and all femaleness reminded me internalized misogyny. That to be a girl was to be bound in only housework and pregagny. Kita purpose was to be fetishizied for her parentage. proclaiming that she was beautiful, and ethnicity was brought up more then once, the same with Grady's femaleness. The plot point was to show their sameness only through there physical features,rather common shared interests, goals or thoughts. They had one conversation where Kita sounded exactly like any other person who says and asks insensitive questions and statements about someones lifestyle.

In dealing diverse voices, the first forlay should be lead by those that have experienced the issues and triumphs first hand.

salmonette Jul 05, 2011

This was a lovely read. What I really enjoyed about this one as opposed to the few other YA fiction books about trans teens, is that it looked at gender from a less binary perspective. It's rare where you will find a book that is not based solely on the "man trapped in a woman's body" narrative. This story shows that there is space for gender fluidity and that it's ok to stay in the grey areas. Such a rare gem.

g
greenwick
Jan 13, 2011

This is a delightful read, and an excellent choice for transgender teens who are looking for someone they can identify with. Those who are searching for the story of a person tormented because of their gender identity will want to look elsewhere. This is the story of an average kid who happens to be trans, and who navigates through the increasingly common process of coming out while still in highschool. A few scenes might come off as preachy, but on the whole, the author is interested more in writing a good story than an overdone morality play.

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green_alligator_9902 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

EuSei Aug 26, 2012

EuSei thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

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