Friday, July 29, 2022

Nine books about the beauty & complexities of chosen families

Gabe Montesanti is a queer, Midwestern roller derby player. She earned her BA in mathematics and studio art from Kalamazoo College and her MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Washington University in St. Louis. She has had work published in Belt Magazine, Brevity, The Offing, and Boulevard Magazine. Her piece, "The Worldwide Roller Derby Convention" was recognized as a notable essay in The Best American Essays 2020. Her roller derby memoir, Brace for Impact, came out from The Dial Press in May, 2022.

At Electric Lit Montesanti tagged "nine books, by authors whose sexualities and gender identities span the gamut, [that] portray the beauty and complexity of chosen family," including:
Detransition, Baby by Torrey Peters

Torrey Peters’ debut novel centers three characters: Reese, a trans woman, Ames (formally, Amy, who recently detransitioned), and Katrina, Ames’ boss, who is pregnant with their child. Peters, who came out as trans at 26, said she was inspired to create Ames’ character after an experience in 2016 in which she dressed in a suit to avoid probing questions from customs agents about her male passport. Not only does this story describe the process of intentionally finding family in the trans community, it also addresses how chosen family can do as much harm and good as blood relatives.
Read about another entry on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue