Making the Grade / None of the Above

Hi! Making the GradeIn the call for diverse books, editors, authors, and readers advocate for literature that represents all of society, not just select, privileged populations. Diversity is a broad definition, and this movement pushes for more novels on diverse experiences, whether it follows a person of color or features a character struggling with their sexual orientation. I.W. Gregorio’s gem of a debut, None of the Above, is one of many examples that best fits the campaign’s mission, but furthermore, it is one of few that tackles identity on the gender spectrum. While reading the journey of an intersex teen, I was struck at how compassionate and realistic of a story it was – the diversity it adds to my bookshelf is only an added plus. My full thoughts are below!

A groundbreaking story about a teenage girl who discovers she was born intersex… and what happens when her secret is revealed to the entire school. Incredibly compelling and sensitively told, None of the Above is a thought-provoking novel that explores what it means to be a boy, a girl, or something in between. What if everything you knew about yourself changed in an instant?

When Kristin Lattimer is voted homecoming queen, it seems like another piece of her ideal life has fallen into place. She’s a champion hurdler with a full scholarship to college and she’s madly in love with her boyfriend. In fact, she’s decided that she’s ready to take things to the next level with him.

But Kristin’s first time isn’t the perfect moment she’s planned — something is very wrong. A visit to the doctor reveals the truth: Kristin is intersex, which means that though she outwardly looks like a girl, she has male chromosomes, not to mention boy “parts.”

Dealing with her body is difficult enough, but when her diagnosis is leaked to the whole school, Kristin’s entire identity is thrown into question. As her world unravels, can she come to terms with her new self? {Goodreads}

Making the Grade None of the AboveNeed more convincing? Here’s what other reviewers had to say.

“Honestly, it would have been difficult for me not to love this book due to subject matter alone… Lucky for me, None of the Above was a great, emotionally charged read, in addition to being groundbreaking, informative, and extremely important” {read the rest of the review at Writer of Wrongs HERE}.

“Kids can be so cruel and ignorant when faced with things they know nothing about. Truly, my heart ached and broke for Kristin, as she not only struggled with coming to terms with being intersex, but as she endured her peers’ bullying” {read the rest of the review at Bittersweet Reads HERE}.

“I.W. Gregorio is definitely a rising debut WNDB author who will get lots of love for this book as well as her future works, and I can guarantee I’ll be picking up more of her books in the future” {read the rest of the review at Forever Bookish HERE}.

Let’s discuss! Has None of the Above crossed your TBR list? Have you encountered any other intersex characters in your young adult or middle grade reads? I’ve heard countless good things about Golden Boy by Abigail Tarttelin, which features a male intersex character {it will be heading home from the library with me this summer :)}, but I would love to hear any other recommendations as well.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

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7 thoughts on “Making the Grade / None of the Above

  1. […] I.W. Gregorio is one of the board members of the We Need Diverse Books team, so I’m not surprised that her debut, None of the Above, was so well-received this past spring! I hadn’t come across any intersex characters before Gregorio’s main character, Kristin, so for that alone, I happily recommend the novel. Fortunately, it also has an engaging plot and a relatable set of secondary characters to supplement its strong protagonist. {review} […]

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