Friday, March 27, 2015

'Gracefully Grayson' by Ami Polonsky


Alone at home, twelve-year-old Grayson Sender glows, immersed in beautiful thoughts and dreams. But at school, Grayson grasps at shadows, determined to fly under the radar. Because Grayson has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever: “he” is a girl on the inside, stuck in the wrong gender’s body.

The weight of this secret is crushing, but leaving it behind would mean facing ridicule, scorn, and rejection. Despite these dangers, Grayson’s true self itches to break free. Strengthened by an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher who gives her a chance to step into the spotlight, Grayson might finally have the tools to let her inner light shine.

Debut author Ami Polonsky’s moving, beautifully-written novel shines with the strength of a young person’s spirit and the enduring power of acceptance

This book is diversity for children. It shows a young kid who doesn't feel right in his skin. (I have to use the male pronoun here.) It is for a younger audience. This gives them a chance to adapt to this new LGBT. So this would help condition people to those who are like Grayson. It's for young people. Which is great. It helps them understand, so the future isn't hatred as stated in the books. 

I will use the female pronoun because that's what Grayson would want. Grayson wanted to be female, so I'll treat her as if she was genetically female. In real life, I would say that Grayson is a she. 

Grayson is very brave. She hid her true self. She was truly someone else underneath her skin. Mentally, she was a girl. Physically, she was a boy. She didn't let that completely smother her. She still imagined and pretended. That's never enough. She has been hiding. But that was not right. She needed to break free. She needed to become the person inside. 
And the change that  happens to make Grayson choose the person inside...amazing. She slowly and steadily became who she wanted to be. With friends. And love. She was given a warm home to come out in. She was so lucky. She was lucky to become her true self in a warm place. 
She was true to herself. Which is something I believe in. Staying true to yourself is important. You can't let people smother you. You have to be yourself. You have to be who you want to be. Even if there is hatred. Even if there is pain. You have to be you. 
It reveals a true message. Be yourself. Be yourself. You can't be happy, truly happy, if you're not yourself. You can be happy. You just have to be true.
And Grayson is true to herself. 
Grayson was so young. That's why I think this book is great. It's not a teenager. It's a middle school kid. She is so young. It shows that LGBT happens in everyone not just adults or teens. It happens in these tweens too. 

The story is lighthearted and sweet. It is innocent. It truly shows the middle school kid. Not yet tainted by the teenager livelihood but still a rough time that doesn't contain the harmony of childhood. Middle school kids are stuck. They are in an uncomfortable time period between childhood and adolescence. 
The plot isn't bad. It's not that dramatic. It is a good book to get people introduced to LGBT. It's not harsh and dark like other LGBT books. (Especially for young adults.) We aren't throw into this terrible world. We do have the stairs scene. That was surprising. It does show you the weight on middle school kids' shoulders. That was the only heavy scene. But it was needed. It shows that LGBT people aren't always loved. They are hated. They know it too. And they're brave to stay open and out. And that's what I love about LGBT. 

The ending is good too. It's not a battle. It's a nice ending. A good ending. It's a sweet ending. 
It might not entirely be realistic for every person who goes through the same thing. You don't always get the kind setting. Grayson was so lucky to have that. But as I said, it's a good starter LGBT book. 
The book ends on a high note. Grayson is not who she truly is. Grayson is free of the shackles of humanity. She becomes her true self. And she's happy. That's the most important thing. She's happy. 

Clear skies

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