sunnuntai 24. heinäkuuta 2011
Julie Anne Peters: Luna
Luna is a beautiful and quite dark novel for young adults. Luna is the name the main character Regan's transgender sister has chosen for herself, "Appropriate, wouldn't you say? A girl who can only be seen by moonlight?".
Regan as a characters seems to work only as a way of telling the story of a transgender person without going too close, without using their point of view. I think the narrative decision works quite well, specially since this is a novel meant for young adults. Luna's feelings are almost too dark and strong for a YA book even when they are narrated through another character. I don't know if I'm being too protective, but I wouldn't recommend this book to my children until they were 17 or 18 years old, Luna's suicidal thoughts and the pressure a young transgender girl faces in everyday life come through so strongly. I'm not saying young people don't know about pain or that the pain transgender people feel should somehow specially be kept away from the eyes of children. I'm saying that this book left me, a 23-year-old slightly genderqueer person with aloving and supporting family, feeling that the world is such a bad place it is wonder more people don't commit suicide. And that's not a feeling I want to pass on to (my future, possible) children. Of course books like this are very important for suicidal teens who find comfort in knowing other (if fictional) characters feel the way they do.
The novel itself is very good. It is well written, the characters feel real and they change during the story. Regan was left wuite flat, but this book was about Luna, who is portrayed as mysterious and complex. The feelings of the characters, their hopelessness seem real, the reader can feel them. I haven't read any YA books handling gende identity before, so I can't compare this to those, but it is definitely a good YA book. I think it is also a good novel, and that adult readers should read it, too.
GLBT Challenge, Gender Identity and Expression Challenge.