I had a post all ready to go up this morning, but then I read a fantastic book over the weekend. FANTASTIC. I had initially read a little about this book, and wasn't sure I was ready for a book that dealt with gender issues. And then I forgot all about what I read, and happened to pick up the book from my TBR.
And I was instantly in love with it.
Rosie and her husband Penn are busy raising their brood of five boys. Their house is filled with fighting and laughter and sports equipment and burping and everything boy. Until Claude, their fifth boy wants to wear dresses and carry a purse.
At first no one is extremely worried about Claude's interest in girly things. But after starting kindergarten, the issue comes to the forefront. Claude wants to be a girl.
As his parents grapple with how best to help their child, they must not only work to help Claude but also his brothers and deal with how to address this issue with everyone else. Although they are supportive and understanding, not everyone else is, leaving the family vulnerable.
Frankel addresses this issue honestly. At book's end she includes a note that although this is a work of fiction, she had a similar issue while parenting her son who wanted to become a daughter. Although this is not her story, it is something close to her heart, and perhaps that has made it so real and honest.
Rosie and Penn grapple with the issue of whether Claude should become a girl or remain a boy. As Claude, who changes his name to Poppy, ages, the issue of puberty arises. For five years Claude's friends never realized he was a boy. When they find out, everything they had worked so hard to hide is exposed. And Claude feels as though he cannot continue to live as Poppy any more.
This issue is in the forefront of people's minds these days. And Frankel's book is a fantastic look at the many sides of this issue.
Go out immediately and read this one.