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Being Jazz: My Life as a (Transgender) Teen Hardcover – June 7, 2016

4.8 out of 5 stars 223 ratings

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Hardcover, June 7, 2016
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 6 Up—Jazz Jennings has been in the public eye for a long time, drawing media attention when her family allowed her to transition at a very young age. In this memoir, Jennings (now 15) shares stories and experiences from her life as an openly trans girl. Battles to get her on the girls' soccer team, to allow her access to the girls' restroom at school, and to educate the public at large dominate Jennings's story. The memoir shares a varied and anecdotal account of her life, offering a behind-the-scenes look at being an LGBT celebrity, navigating preteen romance, and treating depression. The narrative flow is choppy, but the voice and tone are genuine and provide an incredibly normalizing view of a trans teen's life. Jennings speaks frankly about things like anatomy and boyfriends, but mentions of her depression and struggles with peers are subtle. Subjects of violence against trans people and the high rates of suicide in the trans community are also kept at an arm's length, helping the book appeal to younger or unfamiliar readers who may not be prepared for the less uplifting stories of trans life. The teen's successes and nearly limitless self-confidence and optimism will be reassuring for the family and friends of trans youth, but older teens may find the book hard to relate to. A very accessible resource list is included, as well as interviews with the Jennings family. VERDICT A great introduction to trans life for middle schoolers and a balancing addition to the more harrowing stories available.—Amy Diegelman, Vineyard Haven Public Library, MA

Review

A New York Public Library Best Book for Teens, 2016

Rainbow Award Winner, 2016


“Her story is an important addition to the slender but growing body of transgender literature and belongs in every library.” —Booklist, starred review

"For readers looking for a candid introduction to some of the issues facing trans children and teens, this book is an excellent start." —Publishers Weekly

"The teen's successes and nearly limitless self-confidence and optimism will be reassuring for the family and friends of trans youth." —SLJ


Praise for the picture book I Am Jazz:
 
“Jazz is a sensitive and courageous young woman. Her story is inspiring and important to read. By sharing her experiences and view she has added to our understanding and compassion for the transgender experience.” —Barbara Walters
 
“Jazz [is] an eloquent spokesperson for transgender kids.” —Katie Couric
 
“I wish I had had a book like this when I was a kid struggling with gender identity questions. I found it deeply moving in its simplicity and honesty.” —Laverne Cox, acclaimed actress and transgender advocate
 
“A terrific and timely book that explains to kids what it means to be transgender and — more importantly — that reminds kids our similarities are much more important than our differences.” —New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult
 
“All young people — regardless of difference — deserve the things Jazz shares in her lovely book: a loving family, supportive friends, and the freedom to be their true selves. A beautifully illustrated and accessible primer on one trans girl's journey of living her truth.” —Janet MockNew York Times Bestselling author of Redefining Realness
 
I Am Jazz is honest, inspiring, and beautiful—but its greatest strength is it never apologizes for being different.” —New York Times bestselling author Brad Meltzer

Product details

  • Lexile Measure : 1120L
  • Grade Level : 7 - 9
  • Item Weight : 14.5 ounces
  • Hardcover : 272 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0399554645
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0399554643
  • Product Dimensions : 5.8 x 0.97 x 8.5 inches
  • Publisher : Crown Books for Young Readers (June 7, 2016)
  • Reading level : 12 and up
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.8 out of 5 stars 223 ratings
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