Sunday, July 19, 2015

Review: None Of The Above

None of the Above By I.W. Gregorio
Publisher: Balzer + Bray (An Imprint of Harper Collins)
Release Date: April 7th, 2015
Source: Library
Format: Hardback (328 Pages)
My Rating:
★ ★ ★  1/2

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None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio is an novel about a teenaged girl learning in her final year of high school that she is intersex. The story progresses to how her entire school finds this out and how no one really knows what that means so they act like a bunch of assholes. That's basically the only way I can explain it.

Our protagonist Kristin starts out with everything going for her-- a good scholarship and a great boyfriend until she finally goes to the lady doctor and finds out that she doesn't have ovaries, but instead has testicles that her doctor first mistakes for hernias. It's a lot to take for a young girl, but what makes it worst is that she loses everything when words gets out that she is intersex. This is mostly because people at her school don't understand what intersex means or that it's something she was born with. This part of the story frustrated me so much, because I just wanted to punch all these insensitive people in the face. They weren't even trying to understand what it means!

I knew a little bit about what intersex was before reading this due to a sexuality identity & culture class I took in college, but it's not a subject that I understand completely. This book did help me to understand how intersex is different from sexual orientation and gender identity. I think this was a cool topic to discuss in a book, and I think it will open people's eyes to a lot of things. I also liked that the author had a medical background so I knew going in that she actually knew what she was talking about with all the medical facts. I definitely think that it is a book that everyone should read to understand that our society's two-way of thinking is not always accurate.

Although, I did like the subject matter of this book and I think it's an important book that everyone should read, I did have some problems with it. First of all, I thought it was too predictable about who Kristin would end up with. I really didn't think this novel needed a side-romance plot, so I could have done without.

Another thing that bothered me was that Kristin was very "woe is me" for the majority of the book. I understood that she had gone through a traumatic event, and was having a hard time coming to terms with herself, but her constant pity parties started to get on my nerves. She had all these support groups that could have helped her, but she just keep on feeling sorry for herself and I wanted to shake her. I was glad that she comes to terms with her life at the end of the novel, so I did genuinely enjoy it, but these parts annoyed me so much that I can't see myself giving it a higher rating.

Some of the things that annoyed me about Kristin may not be a big deal to others, so I do really want to recommend it to everyone. I think it's an important subject that hasn't really been addressed in YA fiction all that much, and it is a book that needs to be highlighted.

Happy Reads Everyone!