I don't usually get into teen novels that well, but this is excellent. I love the complicated relationship between Regan and her transgendered brother.
Absolutely FABULOUS book about a transgender teenager and family. Written from the perspective of the title character's sister.
Reviewed by Me for TeensReadToo.com
LUNA is the first book I've ever read that deals specifically with transgender issues. Although you get a feel for what the book is about by reading the back copy--in effect, that Regan's brother, Liam, is a woman trapped in a man's body--you don't get the full spectrum of what this actually means until you reach the end of chapter one.
"Rolling over, I muttered, 'You're such a freakshow.' Her hair splayed across my pillow, tickling my face. 'I know,' she murmured in my ear. 'But you love me, don't you?' Her lips grazed my cheek. I swatted her away. As I heard her slog across the floor toward my desk--where she'd unveiled her makeup caddy in all its glory--a sigh of resignation escaped my lips. Yeah, I loved her. I couldn't help it. She was my brother."
Liam is the type of boy who, even as a small child, wanted to by the Mommy when he and Regan played house. For his ninth birthday, he asked for a Prom Barbie and a bra. Now, as a senior in high school, Liam is consumed with letting out Luna, the name he's taken for his female self. His dad, of course, is adamant that his son will finally play baseball. His mother, lost in a world of uppers and downers, pretends not to notice when her son offers to fix dinner or do the laundry. And Regan, the only one who knows her brother for who he is--a sister named Luna--is losing sleep and a chance for her own life by hiding the secret.
Something has to change, and it finally does when Luna decides to go all the way, to actually become Luna, the woman he knows he is. But what will it mean for his family, especially Regan, who has spent so long loving her brother, protecting his secrets, being a part of his life? It might just be time for Regan to have a childhood of her own, and for Luna to come out of the darkness, out of the shadow of the moon, and into the light.
LUNA is an emotional, heartfelt read that deftly deals with the issue of transgenderism in a way that makes it believable and important. I had never really thought of what it must be like for someone who believes they were born with the wrong body, but after reading LUNA, my heart and support goes out to anyone who has ever suffered with this issue. This is a book not to be missed.
"Yeah, I loved her. I couldn't help it. She was my brother." Regan has always been there for her transgender brother, Liam, sacrificing her needs for his, but when he announces that he is ready to "transition" into Luna permanently, Regan is not sure she can handle the consequences. She has been his confidant all her life, letting Luna dress in her room, buying underwear for her when Liam couldn't, and giving support. However, when the attractive new guy in chemistry class shows an interest in Regan, she wishes her sibling would just go away and give her a chance to live her own life. Liam realizes that in order for his sister to be free, he, too, must free himself to become the woman who lives inside him. Told from Regan's point of view in the present and in flashback, this novel breaks new ground in YA literature with a sensitive and poignant portrayal of a young man's determination to live his true identity and his family's struggle to accept Luna for who she really is.