My Life in Transition is a second anthology of Kaye’s web comic, Up and Out, chronicling her life as a transgender woman. Kaye publishes nearly one three-panel comic a day, and this collection is roughly six months of her life. In it, Kaye explores dating as a trans woman, both men and women, and healing after a long-term relationship ends. Kaye also shows instances of people misgendering her, and the anxiety and dysmorphia that often follows. Kaye also navigates friendships and builds personal boundaries with friends, romantic partners, and work. Kaye also struggles with her bio family who is not supportive and exhibits transphobia. A friend suggests a chosen family - building a family of people who are supportive and positive influences. Kaye builds a chosen family of other trans individuals and friends who see Kate for who she is.
Kaye’s comics are honest and authentic. This collection is a stark look into the journey of a trans person, especially after surgeries and hormones have had a chance to work, and often a time we don’t see very often portrayed or discussed in media. Usually, trans stories end with the decision to have surgery or start hormone therapy, but Kaye demonstrates that the daily struggles and journey of personal growth is far from over at that point. The three-panel stories are easy to digest but can pack a punch depending on the type of day Kaye had. They are loosely connected, so this format might be jarring for readers who are used to comics as a longer format, but this style harks back to comic strips and their collection into books.
There is one strip that includes nakedness, but the portrayal is that of rebirth, not anything sexual.
Sara’s Rating: 9/10
Suitability Level: Grades 10-Adult
This review was made possible with an advanced reader copy from the publisher through Net Galley. This graphic novel will be on sale February 16, 2021.
Tags: Rating: 9/10, Suitability: High School, Suitability: Adult, Graphic Nonfiction, Autobiography, LGBTQ+, Romance, Friendship, CSLA 2021
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