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Super Late Bloomer: My Early Days in Transition

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  1,233 ratings  ·  215 reviews
A highly personal collection documenting the early months of artist Julia Kaye’s gender transition.

Instead of a traditional written diary, Julia Kaye has always turned to art as a means of self-reflection. So when she began her gender transition in 2016, she decided to use her popular webcomic, Up and Out, to process her journey and help others with similar struggles reali
Paperback, 160 pages
Published May 1st 2018 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
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Sarah Andersen
May 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Heartfelt and hopeful. I loved it.
This is a collection of comics about Julia Kaye being transgender and transitioning.

It's fine.

Most of the comics are simple three-panel layouts. They are too short to get into anything in much detail. Most revolve around Kaye's gender dysphoria. Being misgendered by both friends and strangers. Having high levels of anxiety about being misgendered. Feeling like everyone is staring at her and judging her all that time. Hating herself on some level constantly.

I can't say this is the best book abo
Mar 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a very personal, very cut to the bone series of strips about transitioning from male to female, along with all the good and bad days that go along with it. Julia is writing an autobiographical strip, and does not hold back anything. When she sees herself as still looking like a man, she mentions it. When she thinks that everyone is looking at her because they think she is a man in drag, she writes about it.

It is not easy reading these. It makes you want to be able to reach out and hug he
Passenger B.
These comic strips depict the the ups and downs, triumphs and setbacks of the author's transitioning from having been born a woman in a male body to making her outside match her inside.
While I realize that the individual as well as collective experiences of trans-women are theirs alone and incomparable I must admit that I could relate to several of the issues brought up in this book; from experiences that were of course different and yet the same on an emotional level:
Whereas I luckily don't ha
Carol Flores
Feb 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novels
Julia Kaye documented her early days when she was transitioning in touching, realistic pages that show the perks and the struggles of being a transgender person.

I really liked this book because it is not offensive in any way, and even if I’m not trans, I am queer, so I get that in life we meet people who are insulting without meaning to, but there are also folks that really understand our struggles and somehow, they help us see the better parts of us.

I wish more people would see this because I
This is an affecting daily chronicle of the first few months of one transgender woman's transition. It's an unvarnished glimpse into the daily triumphs and tragedies of becoming who one is meant to be. Highly recommended to folks who want to better understand transgender lives, as well as those who might be going through something similar.
Stewart Tame
Jul 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
As the cover promises, this is a diary in comics form about Julia’s transition from male to female. She did one cartoon per day. The book is really more about the mental transition than the physical. Despite the physical changes, looking in the mirror and seeing a woman isn’t as easy as it sounds. There's a lifetime of conditioning to undo.

Although there is some humor in this book, it's not constant, gag-a-day material. It's more about introducing you to Julia and her life and building moments o
This is a nice collection of brief, autobiographical comics documenting Julia Kaye's thoughts and feelings as she transitions to living full-time as a woman. Some of the comics are happy and hopeful, while others deal with the more complicated feelings around transitioning and passing (or not passing) as female - and a small subplot addresses the hurt she feels when a family member pretends to be okay with the transition and then proceeds to shut her out almost completely.

It's a great collectio
Rod Brown
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Take keen insight into the emotional rollercoaster of gender transition, mix with humor and grace, and you have a pretty amazing book.
Laura I.
Jan 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Really lovely! Straightforward, deceptively simple (all in the same 3-panel structure) and honest. A great combination of being truthful about the hard things and hopeful.
I received this book from Netgalley in exchange of an honest review.

I have been following Julia Kaye for quite some time now, first on Webtoons around 2015 and later on Twitter when she stopped her Webtoon (which I still think is sad, but I can totally understand the whys).

So most of the comic is not new to me as she has been posting them on Twitter regularly, but I still very much wanted to read them all again. See how it all began. See the process of transitioning, changing her name and gettin
Jun 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
A touching non-fiction graphic novel/comic book about the day to day realities of a recently out trans woman. I found this to be emotional yet beautifully written. This will help so many transgenders realize that they're not alone in how they're feeling. Its hard at first, but it will get better. This is such an important book, and I hope it gets the recognition it deserves. Beautiful!

A huge thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for sending me a digital copy of this book in exchange for an h
Aug 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You can feel how open, real, and raw the author was when creating these comics. She has such a beautiful story and this little collection should get more attention because of it. Super Late Bloomer: My Early Days in Transition is equal parts enlightening, hopeful, and encouraging. I'm so glad that Kaye decided to share her story. It will serve as support for young queer folks, but also as an education tool for someone who might not fully understand what it's like to be transgender. Would definit ...more
May 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
A powerful comic that lets us experience all Julia went through with her gender transition through out a year. This comic collection gives you first hand account of how a transgender view themselves, struggle, worry but through it all they stand strong and help others see they can to. You see the happy moments and the sad moments that can bring you down. Julia is a strong women who stood tall and did what makes her happy. Thank you for sharing you story and please continue to share it.
A wonderful collection of Julia Kay's webcomic Up and Out Comic, which can be read on tumblr and instagram. These strips span the first year of Julia's transition including a cross-country move and many other new starts. I had previously read most of this material online but it was great to be able to hold the book in my hands.
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
My favorite thing about graphic novels is how immersive they feel- with illustrations, I feel more a part of the world than I do with other books. I appreciate Julia's candor sharing a part of her transition and honest experience, with all of the ups and downs. Grateful for this book, and glad to have found it at my local library.
Jun 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novel, adult
This is a very quick, slice-of-life collection of comics the author wrote nearly every day following the start of her transition. I appreciate her raw vulnerability and feel like I have a bit of a grasp on what that must feel like. I’m grateful to have read it.
Jessica Haider
Sep 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
A collection from the author's web comic Up and Out which is a diary of sorts of her first year of transition to female.
Apr 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Book provided by Net Galley in exchange for my honest review.

My partner found Julia’s comics on Instagram during her transition. We both started following Julia and would often discuss the daily comic and how it related to what my partner was feeling. Julia was often a few months ahead of my partner’s transition so it was helpful to see the future reflected in her art, so to speak.

This book is a compilation of daily diary entries in three-panel comic form as Julia goes through her mtf transiti
May 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I've been following Julia's work when I found her gag comics online before she came out publicly. What came next were these highly personal strips about her experiences transition. The simple black and white doodles really carry a lot of weight and make something that seems to foreign to many, cis people like me, come across as relatable in a way. I have no doubt. This comic dictionary is valuable not for those who know all too well what she has been going through but also to those who are cluel ...more
May 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very nice book, especially if you’re trans/know someone who is trans and just starting to transition. I believe everyone can get something from these great comic strips, but as someone who started HRT the same week the book came out, I found it amazing.

The strips are very relatable. Sometimes sad, but ultimately very positive. Always entertaining. Great book.
Cameron Sant
Aug 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
A beautiful and vulnerable comic about early days of transition
Kathryn Kania
Nov 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics, nonfic, queer
Oh my gosh, this is such a cute comic series and also, Julia is super cute herself. The end.
Ed Erwin
Mar 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir, comics, book-club
Very short, but still sparked lots of interesting conversation in my book group.
Mar 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Let's be clear, I'm not transgender. I'm not young like the author. Neither have I ever been attractive like the author was before her transition and is now. More to the point, I tend to approach life from primarily two perspectives. The first comes from Andrew Carnegie, who supposedly (I can't confirm this) told his daughter, "Life will be so much easier for you once you realize life is hard." In my view, if you anticipate what might be hard, you can take steps, sometimes lots of steps, to less ...more
May 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
As Julia Kaye explains in her preface to Super Late Bloomer: My Early Days in Transition, the comics here were drawn daily, one per day, during the early days of her transition. They were both a coming out and a form of therapy, a creative outlet for a transgender soul without a supportive community on which to rely.

The first few comics are both sad and sweet, a portrait of a woman happy with herself, even if society struggles to accept her. There is a conflict here in Kaye's sense of self, a ba
Britt Aamodt
Apr 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Julia Kaye has written a marvelous graphic novel diary of her gender transition.

It's a quick read that is organized mostly as daily comic strips documenting the first several months of her transition. That's one of the great strengths of the story. A lot of memoirs are written in retrospect. This one is written day by day, so the small moments are captured. The small highs. The small lows. The day when everything comes together, followed by the day when no progress seems possible.

Because of this
Liza Fireman
Feb 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: shelf-2019
I really really liked this book, and read it in a bookstore, the magical Powell's City of Books in Portland.
This is a book about the fear and struggles of a trans woman. It is well animated, and brings the emotional roller coaster of being trans (and being human, because many of us will probably feel very empathetic for a bunch of Julia's feelings).
She talks about people misgender her, about changing her name, about friends that use wrong pronouns because it is confusing or hard for them. She ta
Eli Claire
Jul 01, 2020 rated it liked it
A short and sweet collection of autobiographical comics following Julia’s first year of living full-time time as a woman, and the good and bad that comes with it. Gave me a lot of think about in regards to gender and sexuality, and what it means to be a “woman” in today’s society. An engaging and important collection of comics.
Jun 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Checked this out (along with a bunch of other comics) from my local library branch’s surprisingly extensive graphic novel section. Yay libraries!

I don’t usually like diary comics, but this was a look at the experiences of someone transitioning their gender, and the insight into their anxieties, experiences, and day to day life was really affecting. Making a big life change is *hard* and I felt like I got a better understanding of just how it’s hard for a trans woman in the first year of her tra
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