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Becoming Alec [Kindle Edition]

Darwin S. Ward
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $15.00
Kindle Price: $9.95
You Save: $5.05 (34%)

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Book Description

Alec always thought she was a lesbian. She got thrown out of her house for it as a teenager, in fact. But when she moves to Chicago she begins a journey of self- discovery that leads to a place that she never imagined possible. She discovers that she isn't a lesbian at all....but a straight man.


Product Details

  • File Size: 280 KB
  • Print Length: 250 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 061517468X
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: MBM Press; First edition (December 4, 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001BQTT86
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #941,942 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth a read, but nothing great May 28, 2008
Format:Paperback
Decent story that is worth reading if you're interested in tales of transgender transition. The character is likable enough and it has a lot of good information on medical ftm transition. It's really fast and is probably best suited for a quick travel read. Possibly something to give your mom when coming out as trans.

Don't expect anything spectacular, though. The writing was pretty forced and it was obvious in places that the author had not completed hir research. Basic grammatical editing also left much to be desired. The author does show potential though, and I am excited to see if ze writes anything more in a few years after further developing hir writing abilities.
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4.0 out of 5 stars From GLBTBooshelf.com August 15, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Just when I come to the realization that i am a transman, I discover this novel, and though Alec and I have very little in common except for confusing being a trans man with being a lesbian and simply the realization that what's on the outside is not necessarily what is meaningful, I read Alec's with fascination.

Alec knew from a young age that she was not your typical girlie girl. She is not the only one who assumes this means she's a lesbian. When rumors get back to her father, he kicks her out of the house. She's fourteen and on her way to Chicago from her rural home, a hard worker and a survivor. She lives in appalling conditions and takes demeaning and low paying jobs until she discovers a special program for women to teach them to become carpenters. The owners are Smitty and her partner, a butch/femme couple who take to Alec and help her improve her lot in life. Alec meets Jessie and thinks she's got it all: a pretty girlfriend, a great career, a nice place to stay, but she's still not complete. When she starts seeing a psychiatrist it comes to light that Alex's malaise comes from the fact that she is biologically female but mentally male. Alec soon realizes that the hurdles he will have to climb over are not just the surgeries and hormones to make his body match his soul. His seemingly supportive girlfriend slowly discovers how difficult this transition is for her. Alec's lesbian friends are dubious and Smitty even rejects her. Will finding himself result in losing everything he loved about his life.

The novel is realistic, sensitive and well written. Nothing struck me as untrue. The author did a marvelous job of covering the reactions of every possible type of person in someone like Alec's life.
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By Bazzy
Format:Paperback
This book needs heavy editing...particularly in the beginning.

The first problem is too much expository writing.

[Dear author, show don't tell. There is nothing interesting about being told a character is "smart, kind and good-natured..." (10) You must illustrate this. At this point in the book, the character had done absolutely nothing smart, kind or good-natured. Thus this reads like a self-assessment and makes the character seem cocky or deluded.

"It was clear that Alec was a hard worker..." (21) Clear to who? How was it clear? Again, show don't tell.

Examples are numerous.]

The second problem is the stereotyping/hints of racism.

["Letitia, the 17 year old black girl"...(7) Why is her race called out? You did not see fit to call out every-- presumably white-- person in the book. Additionally her character is made out to be lazy, deceptive & the main character questions her intelligence level.

"Scott...made a motion ingrained by his Italian heritage..." (4)
It is offensive to make this character's actions seem robot-like rather than consciously chosen. Additionally his character is made out to be lazy, crude & the main character questions his intelligence level.

See the disturbing trend here?

Also, there is one bit of misinformation that bugged me... binding doesn't cause the breast tissue to break down. That is a result of testosterone whether there was binding or not.]

Having said all that, the story was interesting and even touching. Halfway through I was afraid the book was glorifying the hetero-normative lifestyle but I was pleasantly surprised by queer elements [though a coming out would have been justified/appreciated]. I do hope a revised edition is planned.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome book- Won't be able to put it down! April 6, 2008
Format:Paperback
This is a fantastic piece of work. I could not put this book down once I got started and read it in one day because I could not leave Alec. It's the kind of book that you never want to end. Darwin S. Ward makes hir characters come to life in such a way you feel like you are right there watching these characters in real life. I truly felt like a "fly on the wall" while reading this book. I just read it last Saturday and am planing on reading it again this week. Once you get involved in "Becoming Alec" You will be hooked. Great read for any FTM or family and friends of an FTM. This book is so good that you really don't even need to know what an FTM is, you will find out in the book. I am an avid reader and this is as close to my #1 favorite as one could get. Hurry up and grab this book, you'll be glad you did!
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