Title: A Quick & Easy Guide to Queer & Trans Identities
Author(s): J.R. Zuckerberg, Mady G
Genre: Nonfiction, Graphic Novel
Published: April 23rd 2019 by Limerence Press
LGBTQAI+: The focus is on transgender and nonbinary people, with a section on asexuality, and explanation of sexual and romantic orientations in general.
I received an ARC from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
In this quick and easy guide to queer and trans identities, cartoonists Mady G and JR Zuckerberg guide you through the basics of the LGBT+ world! Covering essential topics like sexuality, gender identity, coming out, and navigating relationships, this guide explains the spectrum of human experience through informative comics, interviews, worksheets, and imaginative examples. A great starting point for anyone curious about queer and trans life, and helpful for those already on their own journeys!
Isn’t that cover amazing and beautiful? Yes, it is!
This graphic novel, as the title says, is all about explaining queer identity. It sort of focuses on transgender and nonbinary people, but it has more general sections on gender identity vs romantic/sexual orientation, a section on coming out, discussions of self-love, and even a section on red flags in relationships.
I didn’t expect to learn anything new from this booklet, and yet it made me realise that social dysphoria exists (up until now, I only knew about physical dysphoria) and that I definitely have been experiencing it.
You see so much gatekeeping nowadays that I am wary about most guides like this, but I found this one refreshingly inclusive, with recognising that not every trans person experiences dysphoria, talking about how nonbinary people might experience transness differently from binary trans people, and an entire section on asexuality. Also, both the intro and the outtro talk about the importance of inclusivity, and “making our quilt bigger” if someone doesn’t fit under it.
Other perks of this book include accessible language, fun illustrations with snails, a section at the end where you can write a letter to your past or future self, and more.
That being said, I do have two complaints.
- The definition of bisexuality used here is “attraction to the same gender and other genders”. This is definitely better than insisting bi people can only be attracted to binary genders or only two genders, but not every bisexual person is attracted to the same gender (e.g. a woman only being attracted to women and nonbinary people can be bi), and the concept of “same gender” might not mean much to a lot of nonbinary people anyway.
- While there is an entire section asexuality, aromanticism is only mentioned in one sentence in the asexual section, and it’s even phrased in a way that implies that only asexual people can be aromantic. This is not true, and there is a bad tendency of only mentioning aromanticism as a “subset” of asexuality when they are different things and not necessarily go together. Since my copy was an ARC, I do hope that the publisher will consider and maybe change this.
Other than those two things, I was pleasantly surprised and content with this guide.