Not only was Jennifer Finney Boylan’s story groundbreaking — one of the first works to put the transgender experience on the page and on the world stage — her writing is beautiful, honest, irreverent, and very funny to boot. When She’s Not There debuted in 2003, Boylan’s candor, determination, and outrageous wit were the perfect combination to open hearts and inspire a generation of trans folks. And now, as half our country continues to open itself to and embrace trans people while the other half pushes hard to erode trans rights, this book, and Boylan’s perspective, are needed more than ever. Recommended By Gigi L., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
The bestselling, seminal work of trans literature: a story of love, sex, selfhood, and understanding from Jennifer Finney Boylan
When she changed genders, she changed the world. It was the groundbreaking publication of She’s Not There in 2003 that jump-started the transgender revolution. By turns hilarious and deeply moving, Boylan — a cast member on I Am Cait; an advisor to the television series Transparent, and a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times — explores the territory that lies between men and women, examines changing friendships, and rejoices in the redeeming power of love and family.
She’s Not There was one of the first works to present trans experience from the perspective of a literary novelist, opening a door to new understanding of love, sex, gender, and identity. Boylan inspired readers to ask the same questions she asked herself: What is it that makes us — ourselves? What does it mean to be a man, or a woman? How much could my husband, or wife, change — and still be recognizable as the one I love?
Boylan’s humorous, wise voice helped make She’s Not There the first bestselling work by a transgender American–and transformed Boylan into a national spokeswoman for LGBTQ people, their families, and the people that love them. This updated and revised edition also includes a new epilogue from Jenny’s wife Grace; it also contains the original afterward by her friend, novelist and Pulitzer Prize winner Richard Russo.
“Love will prevail,” said Boylan’s conservative mother, as she learned about her daughter’s identity. She’s Not There is the story that helped bring about a world in which that change seems almost possible.
“She’s Not There, the Running with Scissors of sex-change stories, brings irreverence and a merrily outrageous sense of humor to this potentially serious business.” Janet Maslin, New York Times
“Beautifully crafted, fearless, painfully honest, inspiring, and extremely witty. Jennifer Finney Boylan is an exquisite writer with a fascinating story, and this combination has resulted in one of the most remarkable, moving, and unforgettable memoirs in recent history.” Augusten Burroughs, author of Running with Scissors and Dry
About the Author
Jennifer Finney Boylan is Professor of English at Colby College and the author of the bestseller She’s Not There, as well as the acclaimed novels The Planets and Getting In. A three-time guest of The Oprah Winfrey Show, she has also appeared on Larry King Live, Today, and 48 Hours, and has played herself on ABC’s All My Children. She lives in Belgrade Lakes, Maine.