Author: Amy Ellis Nutt
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: 2015-10-20
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The inspiring true story of transgender actor and activist Nicole Maines, whose identical twin brother, Jonas, and ordinary American family join her on an extraordinary journey to understand, nurture, and celebrate the uniqueness in us all. Nicole appears as TV’s first transgender superhero on CW’s Supergirl When Wayne and Kelly Maines adopted identical twin boys, they thought their lives were complete. But by the time Jonas and Wyatt were toddlers, confusion over Wyatt’s insistence that he was female began to tear the family apart. In the years that followed, the Maineses came to question their long-held views on gender and identity, to accept Wyatt’s transition to Nicole, and to undergo a wrenching transformation of their own, the effects of which would reverberate through their entire community. Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Amy Ellis Nutt spent almost four years reporting this story and tells it with unflinching honesty, intimacy, and empathy. In her hands, Becoming Nicole is more than an account of a courageous girl and her extraordinary family. It’s a powerful portrait of a slowly but surely changing nation, and one that will inspire all of us to see the world with a little more humanity and understanding. Named One of the Ten Best Books of the Year by People • One of the Best Books of the Year by The New York Times Book Review and Men’s Journal • A Stonewall Honor Book in Nonfiction • Finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for Transgender Nonfiction “Fascinating and enlightening.”—Cheryl Strayed “If you aren’t moved by Becoming Nicole, I’d suggest there’s a lump of dark matter where your heart should be.”—The New York Times “Exceptional . . . ‘Stories move the walls that need to be moved,’ Nicole told her father last year. In telling Nicole’s story and those of her brother and parents luminously, and with great compassion and intelligence, that is exactly what Amy Ellis Nutt has done here.”—The Washington Post “A profoundly moving true story about one remarkable family’s evolution.”—People “Becoming Nicole is a miracle. It’s the story of a family struggling with—and embracing—a transgender child. But more than that, it’s about accepting one another, and ourselves, in all our messy, contradictory glory.”—Jennifer Finney Boylan, former co-chair of GLAAD and author of She’s Not There: A Life in Two Genders
"The Maines were a middle-class, hard-working, politically conservative New England couple whose lives felt complete when they adopted identical twin sons. As toddlers, Jonas was the son Kelly and Wayne Maines expected, but Wyatt was only interested in girls' clothes and toys. By age five, this conflict was tearing Wyatt--and the family--apart. Today, Wyatt is Nicole. She and Jonas are now graduating from high school. This is the story of a journey that could have destroyed a family, but instead united them"--
'Becoming Nicole is a powerful and illuminating book about one couple's journey in coming to accept and nurture their transgender daughter. It's a page turner and a heart opener. I couldn't recommend it more highly.' Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild When Wayne and Kelly Maines adopted identical twin boys, they thought their lives were complete. But it wasn't long before they noticed a marked difference between Jonas and his brother, Wyatt. Jonas preferred sports and trucks and many of the things little boys were 'supposed' to like; but Wyatt liked princess dolls and dressing up and playing Little Mermaid. By the time the twins were toddlers, confusion over Wyatt's insistence that he was female began to tear the family apart. Becoming Nicole is the heart-wrenching story of a mother whose instincts told her that her child needed love and not disapproval; of a conservative, army-veteran father who overcame his deepest fears to embrace his new daughter; of a loving brother who never gave up supporting his twin sister; and of a town forced to confront its own prejudices. More than that, however, Becoming Nicole is the story of an extraordinary girl who fought for the right to be herself.
Author: Amy Ellis Nutt
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2011-04-05
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
On a sunny fall afternoon in 1988, Jon Sarkin was playing golf when, without a whisper of warning, his life changed forever. As he bent down to pick up his golf ball, something strange and massive happened inside his head; part of his brain seemed to unhinge, to split apart and float away. For an utterly inexplicable reason, a tiny blood vessel, thin as a thread, deep inside the folds of his gray matter had suddenly shifted ever so slightly, rubbing up against his acoustic nerve. Any noise now caused him excruciating pain. After months of seeking treatment to no avail, in desperation Sarkin resorted to radical deep-brain surgery, which seemed to go well until during recovery his brain began to bleed and he suffered a major stroke. When he awoke, he was a different man. Before the stroke, he was a calm, disciplined chiropractor, a happily married husband and father of a newborn son. Now he was transformed into a volatile and wildly exuberant obsessive, seized by a manic desire to create art, devoting virtually all his waking hours to furiously drawing, painting, and writing poems and letters to himself, strangely detached from his wife and child, and unable to return to his normal working life. His sense of self had been shattered, his intellect intact but his way of being drastically altered. His art became a relentless quest for the right words and pictures to unlock the secrets of how to live this strange new life. And what was even stranger was that he remembered his former self. In a beautifully crafted narrative, award-winning journalist and Pulitzer Prize finalist Amy Ellis Nutt interweaves Sarkin’s remarkable story with a fascinating tour of the history of and latest findings in neuroscience and evolution that illuminate how the brain produces, from its web of billions of neurons and chaos of liquid electrical pulses, the richness of human experience that makes us who we are. Nutt brings vividly to life pivotal moments of discovery in neuroscience, from the shocking “rebirth” of a young girl hanged in 1650 to the first autopsy of an autistic savant’s brain, and the extraordinary true stories of people whose personalities and cognitive abilities were dramatically altered by brain trauma, often in shocking ways. Probing recent revelations about the workings of creativity in the brain and the role of art in the evolution of human intelligence, she reveals how Jon Sarkin’s obsessive need to create mirrors the earliest function of art in the brain. Introducing major findings about how our sense of self transcends the bounds of our own bodies, she explores how it is that the brain generates an individual “self” and how, if damage to our brains can so alter who we are, we can nonetheless be said to have a soul. For Jon Sarkin, with his personality and sense of self permanently altered, making art became his bridge back to life, a means of reassembling from the shards of his former self a new man who could rejoin his family and fashion a viable life. He is now an acclaimed artist who exhibits at some of the country’s most prestigious venues, as well as a devoted husband to his wife, Kim, and father to their three children. At once wrenching and inspiring, this is a story of the remarkable human capacity to overcome the most daunting obstacles and of the extraordinary workings of the human mind.
New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Finney Boylan returns with a remarkable memoir about gender and parenting that discusses how families are shaped and the difficulties and wonders of being human. A father for six years, a mother for ten, and for a time in between, neither, or both, Jennifer Finney Boylan has seen parenthood from both sides of the gender divide. When her two children were young, Boylan came out as transgender, and as Jenny transitioned from a man to a woman and from a father to a mother, her family faced unique challenges and questions. In this thoughtful, tear-jerking, hilarious memoir, Jenny asks what it means to be a father, or a mother, and to what extent gender shades our experiences as parents. Through both her own story and incredibly insightful interviews with others, including Richard Russo, Edward Albee, Ann Beattie, Augusten Burroughs, Susan Minot, Trey Ellis, Timothy Kreider, and more, Jenny examines relationships between fathers, mothers, and children; people's memories of the children they were and the parents they became; and the many different ways a family can be. With an Afterword by Anna Quindlen, Stuck in the Middle with You is a brilliant meditation on raising—and on being—a child. Now with Extra Libris material, including a reader’s guide and bonus content
A remarkable memoir that tells the story of a person who changed genders chronicles the life of James, a critically acclaimed novelist, who eventually became Jenny, a happy and successful English professor.
Author: Ellen Krug
Release Date: 2013-02
Genre: Gender identity
"What is the price of living an authentic life? Ellen Krug knows . As a man named, "Ed," she had everything anyone could ever want: a soul mate's love, two beautiful daughters, a house in the best neighborhood, a successful trial lawyer's career -- a Grand Plan life so picture-pefect it inspired a beautiful pastel drawing. But there was a problem: "Ed" was a woman born into a male body. Finding inner peace meant Ed would have to become Ellen. It also meant losing that picture-perfect life. How could anyone make that choice, pay that kind of price? Then again, how could anyone not? Through what became a "gender journey," Ellen Krug discovered her true self and the honesty it takes to make life-changing decisions. Getting to Ellen is more than one person's story about some things lost and others gained. It's a glimpse into the life choices that all of us make -- whether or not we're transgender."
Jane Re is a Korean-American orphan, and Queens is her home. Jane toils in her Uncle's grocery store, desperate for an escape. When she lands a job as an au pair for the Mazer-Farleys - Brooklyn English professors with an adopted Chinese daughter - Jane is thrilled. Introduced into a whole new life that's worlds apart from the traditional Korean community she knows, she finds herself surrounded by organic food co-ops and 19th-Century novels. An original, contemporary recasting of Jane Eyre, Re Jane is a funny, moving novel about being true to yourself.
Author: Jazz Jennings
Release Date: 2017-06-14
Genre: Gender nonconformity
Jazz Jennings is one of the youngest and most prominent voices in the national discussion about gender identity. At the age of five, Jazz transitioned to life as a girl, with the support of her parents. A year later, her parents allowed her to share her incredible journey in her first Barbara Walters interview, aired at a time when the public was much less knowledgeable or accepting of the transgender community. This groundbreaking interview was followed over the years by other high-profile interviews, a documentary, the launch of her YouTube channel, a picture book, and her own reality TV series--I Am Jazz--making her one of the most recognizable activists for transgender teens, children, and adults. In her remarkable memoir, Jazz reflects on these very public experiences and how they have helped shape the mainstream attitude toward the transgender community. But it hasn't all been easy. Jazz has faced many challenges, bullying, discrimination, and rejection, yet she perseveres as she educates others about her life as a transgender teen. Through it all, her family has been beside her on this journey, standing together against those who don't understand the true meaning of tolerance and unconditional love. Now Jazz must learn to navigate the physical, social, and emotional upheavals of adolescence--particularly high school--complicated by the unique challenges of being a transgender teen. Making the journey from girl to woman is never easy--especially when you began your life in a boy's body.
They say that whoever you are it's okay, you were born that way. Those words don't comfort Emily, because she was born Christopher and her insides know that her outsides are all wrong. They say that it gets better, be who you are and it'll be fine. For Emily, telling her parents who she really is means a therapist who insists Christopher is normal and Emily is sick. Telling her girlfriend means lectures about how God doesn't make that kind of mistake. Emily desperately wants high school in her small Minnesota town to get better. She wants to be the woman she knows is inside, but it's not until a substitute therapist and a girl named Natalie come into her life that she believes she has a chance of actually Being Emily. A story for anyone who has ever felt that the inside and outside don't match and no one else will understand... "Powerful and empowering, with an optimistic message that we all need more of in our lives. I'm thrilled to see this book is out in the world."—Kate Bornstein, author of Gender Outlaw and A Queer and Pleasant Danger
Author: Kim Elsesser
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Release Date: 2015-09-01
Genre: Business & Economics
Women are not to blame for their lack of advancement at work. Failure to lean in and greater responsibility for childcare don’t fully explain why women are not reaching the top levels of many corporations. The truth is, many senior male executives are reluctant to have a one-on-one meeting with a junior woman at work. They’re afraid that an offhand remark will be misinterpreted as sexual harassment or that their friendliness will be mistaken for romantic interest. As a result, many male executives stick with other men, especially when it comes to dinners, drinks, late-night meetings, or business trips. When it’s time for promotions or pay raises, these same executives are more likely to show preference to the employees with whom they feel most comfortable—other men. In Sex and the Office, Kim Elsesser delves into how issues as varied as workplace romance, spousal jealousy, organizational sexual harassment policies, and communication differences create barriers between the sexes at work. Since senior management is still largely dominated by men, these barriers—which Elsesser labels “the sex partition”—often leave female employees without the influential friends and mentors critical for career success. Fortunately, all hope is not lost. Elsesser offers practical advice on how to break down the sex partition and reveals the best strategies for networking with the opposite sex. Sex and the Office is sure to spark new dialogue on the sources of the gender gap as well as its solutions.
"True stories about people who triumphed over seemingly impossible medical diagnoses using untraditional, inventive therapies and perseverance--and about what scientists are discovering on the psychology of healing and the mind-body connection--from the author of theNew York TimesMagazinearticle about her own son, "The Boy with the Thorn in his Joints," which led to this book about other families"--
This powerful, moving story—which has already touched more than seven million through a viral video created by the Whittington family—is a mother’s first-hand account of her emotional choice to embrace her transgender child. When Hillary and Jeff Whittington posted a YouTube video chronicling their five-year-old son Ryland’s transition from girl to boy, they didn’t expect it to be greeted with such fervor. Beautiful and moving, the video documenting Hillary’s and Jeff’s love for their child instantly went viral and has been seen by more than seven million viewers since its posting in May 2014. Now for the first time, they tell their story in full, offering an emotional and moving account of their journey alongside their exceptional child. After they discovered their daughter Ryland was deaf at age one and needed cochlear implants, the Whittingtons spent nearly four years successfully teaching Ryland to speak. But once Ryland gained the power of speech, it was time for them to listen as Ryland insisted, “I am a boy!” And listen they did. After learning that forty-one percent of people who identify as transgender attempt to take their own lives, Hillary and her husband Jeff made it their mission to support their child—no matter what. From the earliest stages of deciphering Ryland through clothing choices to examining the difficult conversations that have marked every stage of Ryland’s transition, Hillary Whittington shares her experiences as a mother through it all, demonstrating both the resistance and support that their family has encountered as they try to erase the stigma surrounding the word “transgender.” In telling her family’s story, she hopes she can assist the world in accepting that even children as young as five, can have profound and impactful things to say and share. What emerges is a powerful story of unconditional love, accepting others for who they are, and doing what’s right, regardless of whether those around you understand it.
Author: Helen Thorpe
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2014-08-05
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
“A raw, intimate look at the impact of combat and the healing power of friendship” (People): the lives of three women deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq, and the effect of their military service on their personal lives and families—named a best book of the year by Publishers Weekly. “In the tradition of Adrian Nicole LeBlanc, Richard Rhodes, and other masters of literary journalism, Soldier Girls is utterly absorbing, gorgeously written, and unforgettable” (The Boston Globe). Helen Thorpe follows the lives of three women over twelve years on their paths to the military, overseas to combat, and back home…and then overseas again for two of them. These women, who are quite different in every way, become friends, and we watch their interaction and also what happens when they are separated. We see their families, their lovers, their spouses, their children. We see them work extremely hard, deal with the attentions of men on base and in war zones, and struggle to stay connected to their families back home. We see some of them drink too much, have affairs, and react to the deaths of fellow soldiers. And we see what happens to one of them when the truck she is driving hits an explosive in the road, blowing it up. She survives, but her life may never be the same again. Deeply reported, beautifully written, and powerfully moving, Soldier Girls is “a breakthrough work...What Thorpe accomplishes in Soldier Girls is something far greater than describing the experience of women in the military. The book is a solid chunk of American history...Thorpe triumphs” (The New York Times Book Review).
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2017-05-02
Genre: Body, Mind & Spirit
In the bestselling tradition of The Five People You Meet in Heaven and Humans of New York comes a collection of authentic, emotional, and inspiring stories about life’s most important moments, as curated by the editors at Love What Matters. “90% of the reads bring me to tears. I just can't believe the love this world truly has when all we see is hate. This is so uplifting.” —Shelsea Where do you go when you want to feel inspired? When you want to forget about the divisiveness and the anger? For over five million people, that place is Love What Matters, a digital platform dedicated to finding and sharing the daily moments of kindness, compassion, and love that so often go overlooked. This curated collection of powerful stories features first person accounts and photographs that perfectly capture each moment: A husband learning he’s about to be a dad. A new mom embracing her body. A cashier inadvertently teaching a young girl a lesson about patience. A bagel from a stranger that saved a homeless man’s life. From long overdue adoptions to military heroes returning home; from a fireman’s touching 9/11 tribute to what an old dinner plate found at a bake sale can teach us all about life—these are the moments that matter. They are genuine. Authentic. Raw. And they are perfect in their imperfection—just like all of us. You will no doubt experience goosebumps and tears, but this mosaic of life’s moments will leave you with something even more profound: a reminder that, in the end, love always wins. “This really is the best page on Facebook. It renews your love of humanity. There are still good people. We need more reports of acts of kindness.” —Johnny