**spoiler alert** Whether you love The 100, are incredibly disappointed by it, or both, On the Edge of Gone needs to be added to your To Be Read list**spoiler alert** Whether you love The 100, are incredibly disappointed by it, or both, On the Edge of Gone needs to be added to your To Be Read list right this second.
At first, Corinne DuYuis’s novel seems like it will be your typical YA-apocalypse novel, and it is that, but the author’s position as the editor of Disability in Kidlit promises, and delivers more. I was understandably wary when I read that DuYuis’s protagonist—Denise—was concerned that her autism would prohibit her family from earning the chance to flee Earth in the wake of a meteor strike, but Denise is neither the mute Savant nor the quirky sibling of typical autism-fiction. Her story does not belong on the Very Special Episode shelf. It is an end-of-the-world novel that asks important questions about individual worth, interpersonal relationships, and family. It also features a diverse casts that the CW wishes it could pull off. Not only does Denise identify as a Black girl—she is mixed race, with a white mother who has a drug problem and a supportive father who lives in South America—but her sister, Iris, is transgender, a fact that comes up several chapters in and is well-established without being harped upon. The generation ship she seeks to join may be lacking in melanin and wrinkles, so Denise’s sister observes, but it does not discriminate based on religion or disability. Inhabitants of the ship include a Little Person, at least two people in wheelchair, and a doctor with autism (two autistic characters! wo aren’t related!). The first character death leads to a family sitting Shiva, and Anne Frank’s story is acknowledged in a way that satisfies a reader who requires historical parallels in her sci-fi (aka me.) Additionally, most of the folks Denise encounters off of the ship come from unique backgrounds. All-in-all it’s the most realistically diverse book I’ve encounter in, oh, ever, and it’s set in the Netherlands, which, if you’d asked me yesterday, I might have considered one of the whitest places ever.
The one thing that The 100 has that this book doesn’t is an openly bi main character, but this does serve to protect her from bullets, so, win some, lose some. ...more
**spoiler alert** I got about halfway through this book, and was enjoying it. Then, the blind character who could already see and hear things better t**spoiler alert** I got about halfway through this book, and was enjoying it. Then, the blind character who could already see and hear things better than other characters--a stereotype I am SO tired of--died by falling through ice. Ice that she was walking alone on so that she could hear/smell if it was weak better without anyone to distract her. And, look, maybe she's alive and we find out a few chapters later. Maybe plenty of other characters in the book die. But I just can't deal with the first death, the throwaway character, being the only one with a disability. Representation, it might be, but it's just not good enough. ...more
First of all, this book does what it's meant to do. It provides a nuanced discussion of bisexual issues, and the difficulties faced by those in the biFirst of all, this book does what it's meant to do. It provides a nuanced discussion of bisexual issues, and the difficulties faced by those in the bi community. However, my admiration of this book comes from the ways in which it provided more than the advertised content.
So many books about gender and sexual politics get mired down in introducing concepts to the uninitiated. Because of that, most of them end up being redundant and superficial. Eisner manages to avoid that trap without alienating readers who don't have a contemporary blog reader's grasp on the minefield of mindful language. Alongside defining the basics, Eisner introduces newer concepts, reaching a second level in comparison to many books of the kind. All the analysis is notably intersectional--linking bisexuality to broader discussions of feminism, rape culture, race, and disability. This is also the first book I've encountered that integrates trigger warnings, in a totally appropriate, non-gimmicky way.
More than just being intersectional, Eisner provides an underrepresented perspective being from Israel. Thus, the sections dealing with racialized groups--a term for POC I plan to adopt thanks to Eisner, along with minority-world to replace Western--are not rehashings of the parallels between the American civil rights battle and queer history. I found myself questioning views and privileges I didn't know I had, and I consider myself to be pretty attune to my biases. ...more