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Ana on the Edge

4.54  ·  Rating details ·  441 ratings  ·  129 reviews
Twelve-year-old Ana-Marie Jin, the reigning US Juvenile figure skating champion, is not a frilly dress kind of kid. So, when Ana learns that next season's program will be princess themed, doubt forms fast. Still, Ana tries to focus on training and putting together a stellar routine worthy of national success.

Once Ana meets Hayden, a transgender boy new to the rink, thought
Kindle Edition, 240 pages
Published October 20th 2020 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (Hachette)
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Average rating 4.54  · 
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I keep repeating myself but there's truly nothing more validating than seeing yourself in a middlegrade novel. I will never not find this so special. It will never not leave me as an emotional mess.

I've been looking forward to this book for so long and it was exactly what I hoped for. I really saw myself in the way Ana experiences social dysphoria, I felt the portrayal of it in my bones, and I cried multiple times toward the ending. I hope this book will be all this and more for non-binary kids.
I would protect this Michelle Kwan-loving, Asian, enby bean with my life.
4.5 Stars

CWs: Misgendering, misnaming, allusions to transphobia and bullying, and contains multiple coming out scenes

Rep: Ana is non-binary, Chinese-American (with possibly some Hawaiian heritage as well), and Jewish

I'm so glad this book exists. It's overwhelming to think about how this story is going to affirm so many things for so many young readers, in ways we can't even imagine.

(First of all, Ana is trying out multiple pronouns by the end of this story, she/her being some of them, an
Rebecca Gibson
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to read an early copy of this book and all I'll say is DO NOT MISS IT. Not only is it an amazing book it also contains representation we desperately need to see in fiction. Keep your eyes peeled, Ana on the Edge will take the world by storm. ...more
Erin Kelly
Nov 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“You alone get to decide who you are.” Yes, indeed.

Ash Otterloo
May 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book is perfectly paced, friendship- and character-driven in a way that's just right for MG readers, and handles a sometimes tricky-to-explain topic with so much finesse.

Ana's character sorts through the pressure of being a gifted skater, an increasing awareness of a single mother's financial sacrifices, and what it might mean to be non-binary, including all the layered ways these things affect family and friend relationships. The author pulls us into Ana's journey skillfully, handling the
Sara Codair
This book was beautiful and moving. I wish I could've read it when I was 12. All the details about skating were amazing, but the best part of this was Ana's journey discover Ana is nonbinary. ...more
This was really sweet, clearly super knowledgeable on ice skating, and just a really lovely read to finally be able to give to tweens looking for themselves in non-binary MG.
Grace W
Nov 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbt, childrens-book
You can find my full review here: ...more
Eva B.
I love that there's a middle grade book with a nonbinary lead, but I just did not care about the plot, the characters, or the skating aspect, and think it was a bit too long. I think kids in the age group will probably like it more than I did though! ...more
Contemporary queer MG always hits me hard in the feels 😭😭 4.5 stars!

There's something special about contemporary queer MG books. They hit me in the feels differently than a YA book on the same themes would. This story about a non-binary ice skater finding herself and being embraced by her relatives and friends just makes me turn into a puddle of emotions.

I wouldn't say this book is fluffy though! It's a happy book but it also STRESSED ME OUT so much. Stories about young friends miscommunicating
Emily Forsyth
Nov 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This whole book felt like a warm hug. I wish I’d had this book when I was a kid
Feb 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My review completely disappeared for this book and I'm not sure why. Either way, this book was phenomenal and I love this book with all my heart. ...more
Oct 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What an absolutely beautiful book! It's clear that the author has put their heart and soul onto the pages. The prose is crisp and beautiful, the skating scenes are done authentically, and Ana's character arc is done in such a way that's believable and nuanced. I highly recommend this amazing MG book to all, especially as a family read with 8-12 kids as well as a must read for classrooms everywhere. LOVE it so much! ...more
Sheila Averbuch
May 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Debut novelist AJ Sass has carved out a piece of his soul to write Ana on the Edge, and I'm urging you to run, not walk, to pre-order this incredibly moving book. Ana is a highly accomplished, award-winning figure skater growing up in the heavily gendered world of the sport but doesn't identify as a boy or girl. Ana learns what non-binary means in the course of the story, which is a super believable tale of coming out to her friends, family, coach and fellow athletes. I kept highlighting passage ...more
I loved this book so much! ANA ON THE EDGE is such a sensitive, compelling, deeply necessary story about Ana, a passionate skater who’s figuring out her gender identity in the very gendered world of figure skating. Ana keeps her hair short and never skates in dresses, but at the start of the book, she advances to the “intermediate ladies” level and has to skate a fancy new program created by a very expensive choreographer, in which she’s supposed to wear a dress and portray a princess. The dysph ...more
Jan 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: popsugar-2021
I wish I could give this book like ten stars. Holy wowza. This is one of the first books I've read (particularly for young audiences) that has a nonbinary main character. It was so emotional and open and I just genuinely loved every bit of it so much. ...more
Sep 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: yarc
I really loved Ana and I really loved this book.
Hoover Public Library Kids and Teens
Debut novelist Sass tackles the subject of gender identity in this #OwnVoices novel set in the world of competitive figure skating.
Alexx Conrad
Dec 31, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: booktalks
Nov 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Nice—there's a lot of skating detail without being overly technical (that is: it's clear that the author has the skating knowledge to back the characters' experience up), but there are also a lot more layers built into the story. Intersectionality! Hurrah! There's skating, and there's gender identity, and there's also race and class and friendship and family dynamics. (It's a small thing, but I love the acknowledgement of how ridiculously expensive San Francisco is, and skating is—that even thou ...more
Breelynd Huntley
I love the diversity of this book! I showcases voices not only from an Asian perspective but also from trans and non-binary perspectives. This is the kind of book that shows kids that they can be who they feel like they are. I love Ana's mother and everything that she is willing to do for her child. It really was an amazing relationship to read about. I can't rate this book highly enough. ...more
Mar 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
You can read my full review of the ARC on my blog: https://thereadingsofanenglishteacher...

Ana on the Edge is all about Ana-Marie Jin, a twelve-year-old who has just been crowned US Juvenile figure skating champion. Despite that fact, Ana has never been one to wear sparkly dresses--even during competitions. So when the next season's routine ends up being princess themed, Ana isn't really sure how to feel about it!

But then Ana meets Hayden, a transgender boy about the same age and when they beco
May 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
This book is an instant-classic in middle grade LGBTQ literature. ANA ON THE EDGE follows 12-year-old figure skater Ana as she navigates the restrictive, binary norms in skating culture while coming to terms with her own non-binary identity. The book tackles issues of class, friendship, sexuality, and gender with nuance and ease. Without spoiling anything, I particularly loved how Ana adapted her final skating performance to fit her identity, and the novel's approach to Ana's decision about pron ...more
This perfectly shows the confusion, fear, and internal bargaining one does while figuring out their identity and how to share something that is still not understood by oneself.
Laura Rueckert
Apr 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Everyone should read this book! I love it for three reasons. First, it’s an engaging book. I was completely invested in Ana’s story and had to know what was going to happen. Especially during the last half, I didn’t want to put it down. Second, I have a transgender child, and I know how important it is for kids to see that they’re not alone. Even just learning the terminology and that there are others like them helps to give them the feeling of belonging. Third, if more people, especially kids, ...more
Kristin Lambert
Apr 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was expecting this to be a good book, but it blew me away. The author sets the tone early with an incredibly suspenseful edge-of-your-seat scene of Ana’s big moment at a national figure skating competition, and keeps the tension drawn tight as the stakes for Ana rise and rise.

Not only is Ana struggling to understand and communicate their gender identity, but also to cope with major life changes and pressures that would be hard for anyone, let alone a 12-year-old child, to process.

That’s not
Apr 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Stellar prose, relatable characters, and a crisp page-turning pace combine to make this one of my favorite middle-grade debuts of 2020. I really loved this book!

Thank you to NetGalley for an e-ARC of ANA ON THE EDGE.
Jan 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Perfect for fans of MY LIFE AS A DIAMOND by Jenny Manzer but way better.

Ana Jin a twelve-year-old US Juvenile champion in the girls’ division. She is a Jewish Asian-American. She is homeschooled in San Francisco. And she identifies as nonbinary: not a boy, and not a girl. Somewhere in between. Maybe neither. Ana experiences social dysphoria. That means that she is comfortable with what her body looks like but feels uncomfortable when people make assumptions about her gender based on the length o
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A.J. Sass is a fiction-writing figure skater, inclined toward adventures of a traveling nature. He is autistic, nonbinary, and keen on exploring how intersecting identities impact character narratives.

An avid figure skater, A.J. is a US Figure Skating double gold medalist in Moves in the Field and Free Skate, is actively working toward his gold medal in Ice Dance, and a member of the three-time na

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