Thursday, April 9, 2015

None of the Above by I.W Gregorio

Title: None of The Above by I.W Gregorio

Release Date: April 7, 2015

Publisher: Balzer + Bray

Pages: 352

Received: ARC from Publisher

Star Rating: ★ ★ ★  

A groundbreaking story about a teenage girl who discovers she was born intersex . . . and what happens when her secret is revealed to the entire school. Incredibly compelling and sensitively told, None of the Above is a thought-provoking novel that explores what it means to be a boy, a girl, or something in between.
What if everything you knew about yourself changed in an instant?
When Kristin Lattimer is voted homecoming queen, it seems like another piece of her ideal life has fallen into place. She's a champion hurdler with a full scholarship to college and she's madly in love with her boyfriend. In fact, she's decided that she's ready to take things to the next level with him.
But Kristin's first time isn't the perfect moment she's planned--something is very wrong. A visit to the doctor reveals the truth: Kristin is intersex, which means that though she outwardly looks like a girl, she has male chromosomes, not to mention boy "parts." [goodreads]

My Thoughts:

After reading this book, I can successfully say I know more about hermaphrodites. It was a super informative health lesson and a moving story. I couldn't help but become more curious, so I did my research. This topic of realistic YA is rare, so as an instinct, I picked this up right away. What really stood out to me in "None of the Above", was how the author addressed the subject from alternate angles. It came from emotional, social, and biological standards. 

Kristen's story focused on her experiences with ignorant responses, to her being intersex, and Kristen's self-actualization. It really brought things intro perspective. Any time Kristen was in a situation that made her feel uncomfortable, I really felt ashamed for those people who don't fully understand Kristen's situation and are easily opinionated. 

Sometimes it's easily to forget that high school's can be this cruel to a girl. By reading only the synopsis, the novel can be perceived as a "common high school story" background. Even though I believed that at times, it's not the background that really matters, but the whole story arc. Kristen's struggles, especially dealing with people who say they "accept everyone" and become a hypocrite for calling out Kristen, has brought out real, raw emotions.

The novel ended in a high note and it held its justice. I also enjoyed the author's note towards the end of the novel. I liked how the audience knew the book's origin and it's just another story ready to be told.

"None of the Above" achieves anything above average. It can educate those in need of it and those who need it for the knowledge. I appreciated watching Kristen's progress throughout the whole novel. I.W Gregorio grasped this subject in an informative and fine way, with also pouring out raw emotions. I highly recommend anyone and everyone to read it.

"Love isn't a choice. You fall for the person, not their chromosomes."


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