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Finding Tranquility  By  cover art

Finding Tranquility

By: Laura Heffernan
Narrated by: Tori Barron
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Publisher's summary

An impulsive decision. A twist of fate. A new life.

On September 11, 2001, Brett Cooper checks into a flight to go on an interview for a job he doesn't want in a city where he doesn't want to live. All to make his wife happy. He loves her, but he's not happy in his marriage. Or in his body.

When boarding begins, Brett panics and gives his ticket away. Then the plane strikes the World Trade Center, giving Brett a second chance. Finally, he can live the life he always wanted. Brett embraces his "death" and disappears. For 18 years, everything is peaceful and easy. Until Jess reappears.

Jess used her husband's life insurance to go to medical school. Unfortunately, she's not really a widow. To complicate matters, Jess realizes that the love she held for her spouse is alive and well. The spouse who transitioned into Christa while they were apart. Together, Christa and Jess must figure out what the future holds.

Can love conquer all, or is it better sometimes to let go?

©2020 Laura Heffernan (P)2020 Laura Heffernan
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: LGBTQ+

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A complicated romance

This story is about a transgender woman, her relationship with her wife, and the people she meets. My first beef with this story is it quite obviously seems to have been written by a cisgender woman, who while she might know a decent amount about LGB people, she doesn't seem to know much about Trans people. This is most telling when she talks about what effects estrogen has on trans women who have already gone through the wrong (male) puberty. My second; and really this was very close to being my first, beef with it is having a narrator who has a distinctly masculine voice. This only serves to reinforce the fallacy that trans women are really men in women's clothing; a fallacy that allows people to justify our murders.

There is also the whole "lying, running away, stealing, identity theft" plotline that paints her as a conniving criminal, and helps to reinforce the notion that trans people are inherently deceitful.

The author did do an excellent job of showing the "chosen family" network that so many LGBTQIA people are forced to create when our families and friends reject, and disown so many of us. Yes I did cry during several story points that touched of that, and they were some of the strongest points of the novel, because they rang the most true.

The plot twist in the latter half of the novel didn't ring true at all; in fact very little of the end rang true, except for the violent bigotry that Crista encountered. Again, that was all too painfully accurate, and quite honestly very well told by the author. She clearly has an understanding about the violence LGBTQIA people are far too often subjected to, either from personal experience, or that of friends and loved ones.

I would be interested in checking out other works by her, as long as the narrator is a better choice for those works.

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