cover image Rethinking Normal: A Memoir in Transition

Rethinking Normal: A Memoir in Transition

Katie Rain Hill. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (272p) ISBN 978-1-4814-1823-2

Katie knew she was a girl on the inside, even when she was a suicidal kid named Luke growing up in a disjointed family in Oklahoma. Bullied relentlessly at school and unsupported by administrators, other students’ parents, and even her own father, Katie finds an ally in her mother, who stands by her child as she starts dressing like a girl, legally changes her name, and travels to get genital reconstruction surgery the day after turning 18. Along the way, Katie becomes an advocate for transgender teens, appearing on TV with her trans boyfriend Arin Andrews, whose memoir, Some Assembly Required, is being published simultaneously. Katie’s story provides solid information about what it means to be transgender and to transition, as well as “Tips for Talking to Transgender People” in the back matter. Part of what makes Katie’s story so extraordinary is that many of her struggles are entirely ordinary (she cheats on Arin, for example, lying to him when he finds out through Facebook). Being so open—and openly imperfect—makes Katie relatable on a human level, not just as a spokesperson. Ages 14–up. (Sept.)