The Sum of My Parts

James Sanford - 2011
    At first I tried to deny my condition (trying to treat a tumor with hot baths and ice packs). Eventually, I decided I would learn as much about my illness as possible while trying to keep my emotions on hold.What followed was an experience that finally forced me to deal with issues about my body that I had tried to ignore for decades. Along the way I dealt with a physician who gave me ridiculous advice and acquaintances who asked unbelievable questions. But I was also fortunate to be surrounded by people who supported me and doctors who helped me through the process.


Holly Lorka - 2020
    She had questions: Was she a monster? Would she ever be able to grow sideburns? And most importantly, where was her penis?The problem was, it was the 1970s, so there were no answers yet.Here, Lorka tells the story—by turns hilarious and poignant—of her romp through the first fifty years of her life searching for sex, love, acceptance, and answers to her questions. With a sharp wit, endearing innocence, and indelible sense of optimism, she struggles through the awkward years (spoiler: that’s all of them) and discovers that what she thought were mistakes are actually powerful tools to launch her into a magical—and ridiculous—life.Oh, and she discovers that she can buy a penis at the store, too.

Second Son: Transitioning Toward My Destiny, Love and Life

Ryan K. Sallans - 2012
    The reader is pulled through Ryan's transition from infant to child, child to body-obsessed teenage girl, teenage girl to eating-disordered young woman, female to male, daughter to son, and finally a beloved partner to a cherished fiance'. A unique lens on life and love. Ryan candidly shares his struggle to find love and acceptance; a struggle that transcends through every layer of society. He nearly died from an extreme case of anorexia as an insecure female college student. The only thing that saved him was his inner spirit begging for a chance to live. ? Second Son chronicles Ryan's battle with his family, his romantic partner, and his body. He unblinkingly focuses on the empowerment he achieved as he underwent gender reassignment surgeries and traces his evolution into manhood. ? It took twenty-nine years for Ryan to find himself. The world is now ready for this intimate and honest autobiography that will educate and empower men and women around the globe. At a time when fighting to find oneself is popular, Ryan's story will resonate with people everywhere who are journeying to find their own destinies, love, and life.

Getting to Ellen: A Memoir about Love, Honesty and Gender Change

Ellen Krug - 2013
    As a man named "Ed," she had everything anyone could ever want: a soul mate's love, two beautiful daughters, a house in the best neighborhood, a successful trial lawyer's career - a "Grand Plan" life so picture-perfect it inspired a beautiful pastel drawing,But there was a problem: "Ed" was a woman born into a male body. Finding inner peace meant Ed would have to become Ellen. It also meant losing that picture-perfect life.How could anyone make that choice, pay that kind of price? Then again, how could anyone not? Through what became a "gender journey," Ellen Krug discovered her true self and the honesty it takes to make life-changing decisions."Getting to Ellen" is much more than one person's story about some things lost and others gained. It's a glimpse into the life choices that all of us make --whether or not we're transgender.

Tomboy Survival Guide

Ivan E. Coyote - 2016
    Tomboy Survival Guide is a funny and moving memoir told in stories, in which Ivan recounts the pleasures and difficulties of growing up a tomboy in Canada’s Yukon, and how they learned to embrace their tomboy past while carving out a space for those of us who don’t fit neatly into boxes or identities or labels.Ivan writes movingly about many firsts: the first time they were mistaken for a boy; the first time they purposely discarded their bikini top so they could join the boys at the local swimming pool; and the first time they were chastised for using the women’s washroom. Ivan also explores their years as a young butch, dealing with new infatuations and old baggage, and life as a gender-box-defying adult, in which they offer advice to young people while seeking guidance from others. (And for tomboys in training, there are even directions on building your very own unicorn trap.)Tomboy Survival Guide warmly recounts Ivan’s adventures and mishaps as a diffident yet free-spirited tomboy, and maps their journey through treacherous gender landscapes and a maze of labels that don’t quite stick, to a place of self-acceptance and an authentic and personal strength. These heartfelt, funny, and moving stories are about the culture of difference—a “guide” to being true to one’s self.

Body Alchemy: Transsexual Portraits

Loren Cameron - 1996
    But none of this has prepared us for Loren Cameron's amazing portraits of transsexuals. Beautifully reproduced and complemented with notes and short essays, these portraits of women who are now men may startle, but they will also make you marvel at the genuine complexities of life, sex, and desire. Body Alchemy might have been a curiosity, like Diane Arbus's photographs of those outside the physical and cultural mainstream, but Cameron's art is so empathetic, so precise, that we are left in awe and with a new understanding of the realities of being human.

Dear Senthuran: A Black Spirit Memoir

Akwaeke Emezi - 2021
    Now, in this extraordinary memoir, the bestselling author of The Death of Vivek Oji reveals the harrowing yet resolute truths of their own life. Through candid, intimate correspondence with friends, lovers, and family, Emezi traces the unfolding of a self and the unforgettable journey of a creative spirit stepping into power in the human world. Their story weaves through transformative decisions about their gender and body, their precipitous path to success as a writer, and the turmoil of relationships on an emotional, romantic, and spiritual plane, culminating in a book that is as tender as it is brutal.Electrifying and inspiring, animated by the same voracious intelligence that distinguishes their fiction, Dear Senthuran is a revelatory account of storytelling, self, and survival.

Found in Transition: A Mother’s Evolution During Her Child’s Gender Change

Paria Hassouri - 2020

Uncomfortable Labels: My Life as a Gay Autistic Trans Woman

Laura Kate Dale - 2019
    From struggling with sensory processing, managing socially demanding situations and learning social cues and feminine presentation, through to coming out as trans during an autistic meltdown, Laura draws on her personal experiences from life prior to transition and diagnosis, and moving on to the years of self-discovery, to give a unique insight into the nuances of sexuality, gender and autism, and how they intersect.Charting the ups and downs of being autistic and on the LGBT spectrum with searing honesty and humour, this is an empowering, life-affirming read for anyone who's felt they don't fit in.

The Last Time I Wore a Dress

Daphne Scholinski - 1997
    Dylan's story—which is, sadly, not that unusual—has already received attention from such shows as 20/20, Dateline, Today, and Leeza. But his memoir, bound to become a classic, tells the story in a funny, ironic, unforgettable voice that "isn't all grim; Scholinski tells [his] story in beautifully evocative prose and mines [his] experiences for every last drop of ironic humor, determined to have the last laugh." (Time Out New York)

Trans Liberation: Beyond Pink or Blue

Leslie Feinberg - 1998
    In Trans Liberation, Feinberg has gathered a collection of hir speeches on trans liberation and its essential connection to the liberation of all people. This wonderfully immediate, impassioned, and stirring book is for anyone who cares about civil rights and creating a just and equitable society.

Flight Path: A Search for Roots beneath the World's Busiest Airport

Hannah Palmer - 2017
    Having uprooted herself from a promising career in publishing in her adopted Brooklyn, Palmer embarks on a quest to determine the fate of her lost homes—and of a community that has been erased by unchecked Southern progress. Palmer's journey takes her from the ruins of kudzu-covered, airport-owned ghost towns to carefully preserved cemeteries wedged between the runways; into awkward confrontations with airport planners, developers, and even her own parents. Along the way, Palmer becomes an amateur detective, an urban historian, and a mother. Lyrically chronicling the overlooked devastation and beauty along the airport’s fringe communities in the tradition of John Jeremiah Sullivan and Leslie Jamison, Palmer unearths the startling narratives about race, power, and place that continue to shape American cities. Part memoir, part urban history, Flight Path: A Search for My Roots beneath the World's Busiest Airport is a riveting account of one young mother's attempt at making a home where there’s little home left.

Man Alive: A True Story of Violence, Forgiveness and Becoming a Man

Thomas Page McBee - 2014
    Standing at the brink of the life-changing decision to transition from female to male, McBee seeks to understand these fallen icons of manhood as he cobbles together his own identity.Man Alive engages an extraordinary personal story to tell a universal one – how we all struggle to create ourselves, and how this struggle often requires risks. Far from a titillating, transgender tell-all, Man Alive grapples with questions of legacy and forgiveness, love and violence, agency and invisibility. Written with the grace of a poet and the intensity of a thriller, McBee’s story will haunt and inspire.

My Story

Caroline "Tula" Cossey - 1992
    She was fighting for the legal right to marry as a woman. The author tells of her childhood in Norfolk, the operations that liberated her sexually and her persecution by the tabloid press.

At the Broken Places: A Mother and Trans Son Pick Up the Pieces

Mary Collins - 2017
    In At the Broken Places, a parent and transgender son recount wrestling with their differences as Donald Collins undertook medical treatment options to better align his body with his gender identity. As a parent, Mary Collins didn't agree with her trans son's decision to physically alter his body, although she supported his right to realize himself as a person. Raw and uncensored, each explains her or his emotional mindset at the time: Mary felt she had lost a daughter; Donald activated his authentic self. Both battled to assert their rights. A powerful memoir and resource, this book offers a road map for families in transition.