Some of the Parts
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Some of the Parts

3.46 of 5 stars 3.46  ·  rating details  ·  154 ratings  ·  23 reviews
In sparse, evocative prose, T Cooper tells the story of four splintered lives: Isak is a "gender freak" to the world at large. Taylor is so simultaneously perfect, yet useless, that she is paralyzed. Her mother Arlene is lonely and pill-popping, while Arlene’s brother Charlie faces the unexpected—even unwanted—prospect of being healthy with HIV. Fractured lives in various...more
Paperback, 250 pages
Published September 1st 2002 by Akashic Books
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Somebody- I think it was Katie Kaput?- asked me a couple weeks ago what my definition of trans art was. I didn't have a good answer at all, so I was like, I don't know- I'm trans and if I make art, I guess that makes it trans art? But that is a stupid answer. I have no idea what trans art really is in 2009 (or 2002, when this was written)- I mean, I guess there's always good ol' drag, but that's more of like a post-gender art, or a gay art, or ... doesn't really fit my experience of being trans....more
this book was pretty good but i had a lot of trouble focusing while reading it. despite reading almost the entire thing, i wasnt able to finish it because it just didnt keep my interest.
Dec 23, 2008 Ciara rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people dealing with sick loved ones, queer family advocates, fans of spare san fancisco prose
Shelves: read-in-2008
i picked this up at the library because i liked the cover, which is a collection of photobooth pictures. pretty shallow, huh? it's been maybe six months since i read it, but that doesn't mean i remember it that well. let's see...i know there is something about a pair of roommates who have a somewhat co-dependent friendship. one of the roommates is infected with HIV & the other roommate spends a lot of time taking care of him & worrying about his health. i think there is a teenage girl wh...more
I really enjoyed this novel. It is, essentially, the story of four people, connected by family ties, who begin to connect in other, unprecedented ways; it is the story of distant family members coming together as each fights their own battles, even as they don't know exactly what they want.

I enjoyed all parts of this novel - the confusing bits, the frustrating bits, the bits that made you hopeful - all of it. There isn't much of a narrative, no linear story to follow; you come into the lives of...more
It took me over three weeks to read this 264 page novel, not because I'm a slow reader but because it was so painstakingly hard to get into. I kept reading, waiting for something, anything to happen. Writing about four loosely related, depressed, one-dimensional individuals with no plot or real story to tell does not make a novel.
We have Arlene, the so-called pill-popping divorcee. She only popped pills ONCE in the entire novel! Taylor, Arlene's bisexual oh-so-beautiful, I'm-bored-with-life-beca...more
Laura Motta
An interesting, occasionally frustrating novel focusing on four characters whose intersecting lives are fraught with loneliness and upheaval. Nicely structured, with each chapter alternately told from the perspective of a different character, the stories ring painfully true. The exploration of these difficult, multi-faceted relationships -- a mother and her estranged daughter, a seriously ill brother and the reluctant sister he's decided to move in with, a couple with an ambiguous romantic statu...more
Some of the Parts begins with Isak getting the part of the hermaphrodite “gender freak” in a circus. I began to think that the book was going to be like Geek Love but it wasn’t. Each chapter in the book is devoted to the point of view and mindset of one of the four main characters in the story.

"Some of the Parts is about families - the ones we’re born into, and the ones we create."

Isak is the gender freak who once used to be a lovely little girl named Thea. Isak is Charlie’s roommate and it is n...more
Sep 18, 2007 Evan rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone who likes to read a writer at the very beginning of their career.
Some of The Parts was a good read. There are four characters related by blood and/or friendship, and circumstance. Each chapter is told from one of the characters point of view. There's Taylor, a twenty something year old, who's used to sliding thru life, breaking hearts of older suitors/lovers because she can't be contained and doesn't really know what love is. None of her tricks/ways work on Isak, born a girl, mistaken for a man. At the beginning of the novel he is working for a freak show. Is...more
Like so many other people apparently did, I bought the book solely because of the awesome photobooth strip cover. Unfortunately, I couldn't get into the book. The cover didn't seem to have anything to do with the book- were the people on the cover characters from the book? I have no idea. I didn't feel anything for any of the characters except for mild dislike. Even strong dislike would have been better than the very, very mild dislike that I felt for them. Everyone was either a mooch or codepen...more
I love the last line of this book (and the ending in general) so much that I tattooed it on my wrist. Full disclosure: I'm friends with and was once quite crushed out on the author. I read the book initially after we met (at Meow Mix in New York of all places) to see if there was any talent and/or substance behind the charm and cuteness. And much to my surprise, (since I tended back then to only attract trouble,) the book was one of those rare few that I didn't want to end. I remember rationing...more
Dec 31, 2008 Hannah rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Hannah by: mom
Shelves: repeat-offenders
This is one of my favorite books of all time. I probably re-read it about once a year. Literarily it gets off to a rough start with some really obvious metaphors and slow moving prose, but smooths out by the end, almost in tune with the resolution of the plot. Cooper's treatment of the nature of families that transgress blood boundaries is true to life and moving. I reread it so often not because of its literary value (it isn't the best-written book I've ever read) but because so few novels move...more
Sassafras Lowrey
really wanted to like much more than I did but probably a case of it's not you it's me- should give this a second chance
This is another early adulthood "am I gay?" read of mine. I find it interesting/disturbing that the L Word has, without acknowledgment, co-opted this title (almost: Jenny's book is called "Some of Her Parts") for one of their lame (but dramatic!) storylines. Whatever, I recommend it - it has nothing at all to do with simpering lesbians in LA, and everything to do with gender, family, and just trying to make it.
yeah, it was pretty good. it was hard to follow in that way that books that split narratives into multiple voices/plotlines often are. it took a while to see how the multiple characters would interact and unlike other authors, say irvine welsh, there is no obvious difference between the narrators' voices to make clear who is narrating. once i got the plot and characters down, yeah, i was feeling it.
I wouldn't have even given it one star if I could have given it none and had other people see reviews. HORRIBLE book. Disgusting- crude. Don't bother.
I read this book in my last year of undergrad in a Gender/Passing and Performance Class. The author came to our class to do a reading. It was fab dahling.
good character development, commentaries on gender perception in society, hardly any plot. seemed to just end abruptly.
I seem to be on a big T. Cooper kick lately and I simply adored this book.
Well the writing was good but the ending was abrupt and deeply unsatisfying.
Michelle Hailey
main character is sometimes annoyingly self-destructive.
Very revealing story about the human condition.
Marci Blackman
Impressive first novel.
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T COOPER is the author of four novels, including the bestselling "The Beaufort Diaries" and "Lipshitz Six, or Two Angry Blondes," as well as a brand-new Young Adult book series entitled "Changers." Cooper edited an anthology of original stories entitled "A Fictional History of the United States With Huge Chunks Missing," and his most recent book is the non-fiction "Real Man Adventures" (just relea...more
More about T Cooper...
Lipshitz Six, or Two Angry Blondes Real Man Adventures Changers Book One: Drew (Changers, #2) The Beaufort Diaries A Fictional History of the United States (with Huge Chunks Missing)

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