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Luna

Narrated by: Elizabeth Evans
Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (177 ratings)
Regular price: $19.95
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Publisher's Summary

Regan's brother Liam can't stand the person he is during the day. Like the moon from whom Liam has chosen his female namesake, his true self, Luna, only reveals herself at night. In the secrecy of his basement bedroom Liam transforms himself into the beautiful girl he longs to be, with help from his sister's clothes and makeup. Now, everything is about to change - Luna is preparing to emerge from her cocoon. But are Liam's family and friends ready to welcome Luna into their lives?

Compelling and provocative, this is an unforgettable novel about a transgender teen's struggle for self-identity and acceptance.

©2004 Julie Anne Peters (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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This book hits home

Let me start out by saying that I loved this book. If that's the only bit of information you require, then read no further. If you would like to know why, then let me tell you.

As someone with a transgendered sibling, I was instantly drawn to the premise of this book. I went into this expecting a story like my own, with a sibling that did what she pleased no matter how it angered everyone, maybe even to cause such anger in everyone just to spite them for making her feel so different. Luna's story was not like that, and I'm glad. She was still a believable character in every aspect. Each person who goes through something like this, some form of alienation from peers and family, will react differently, and I appreciated the perspective of someone who tried to hide themself away until they felt ready to express who they really were, something that will probably resonate with most people, no matter what you've experienced. I adored Luna's spirit, and I despaired every time she hurt (though sometimes it was her own doing). The courage it took to be herself in the end is admirable, and the strength she had to walk away from a potentially damaging situation is something every struggling person can strive for.

The other characters were incredibly realistic as well. The parents were probably the closest to my own experience. I too had a father who used to be successful and really, really wanted a boy, and a mother who made the money in the family and sort of pretended nothing was wrong so she wouldn't have to deal with the backlash. The sister, Regan, while very unlike me in how we handled our siblings, was a wonderful, encouraging narrator. She was naive and stubborn at times, but she showed continual love for Luna, even when Luna did things that negatively affected Regan's life. It's the type of support everyone deserves, and the sort of family member someone like Luna desperately needed.

The story itself was incredible, and even though the narrator wasn't the main character (Luna is the main character), we still saw Luna's very real struggle and how she coped with her life. While hearing from Luna's perspective about the difficulties she faced would have been fascinating, I did appreciate the message this book chose to send instead. The narrative was more about how others/society need to come to accept transgendered people as, well, REGULAR PEOPLE instead of labeling them and othering them as something that isn't normal. That is a powerful message in a y.a. book.

My only complaint is the guy who reads this book. I understand the point/meaning of a guy reading a book that's supposed to be from a girl's perspective. It was a nice touch in this audiobook about a transgendered girl. While Brad Raimondo did a fantastic job with his interpretation of Luna, and most of the time he did a very good Regan, he made some of the other characters into caricatures. The dad was always a stiff jock type, the mom was an overworked busybody, and the girls in Regan's class all seemed stuck up. I suppose if we take into account that they're all supposed to be shown as Regan interprets them, then he did a fine job, but I felt there could have been a bit more depth to those other voices.

All in all, this is a wonderful book, and well worth the listen. Use your credit on something else and straight up buy this book. You need it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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It just doesn't work

I would not recommend this story to any person trying to understand what it is like growing up trans. It voices a lot of the fears of what it is like, but only through the narrator and not the actual trans character. Luna is all about fashion and makeup and that seems to be it. That's what being a girl is to her. I found it a bit insulting.

I could be wrong and this whole story is based on true experiences, but I can't see any of these characters behaving this way. The trans girl is self-involved and obsessive. I understand there is a period around transitioning that is selfish, but in my experience it is that way because of all of the insecurity and anxiety and not to do with a complete personality shift and denial of reality. At one point her sister is sobbing and Luna asks to go shopping. Girls be shopping, right? Also she is a savant for some reason.

The sister is written as very adult and wise, but also as immature and dumb. It seems her character changes to fit the story instead of the other way around. The dad seems relatively grounded in reality, but the mother is just a sociopath. I don't mind an antagonist, but the motivations for the mother are nonsensical. Either she's an extreme narcissist or a weird caricature. It doesn't much matter either way, because she's almost a non-entity in the story, which being a story about a family is bizarre.

I may have missed the exact year, but it feels this is set during the same years I was a kid. Cellphones and pagers coexist. America West Airlines was a thing. I was in the closet in high school in the early 2000s. I figured this book would likely reflect my experience at least a bit, but its wildly off the mark. Also, and this is a small thing, but why do the characters go to a Blockbuster to buy cds at the mall? I'm assuming they meant a Sam Goody.

I can't go into one of the worst and most offensive moments in this book without spoilers, but I sided with the people furious at Luna and not the actual trans girl. I am wired in every way to want to root for Luna and still, I never could. I do not and will not speak for all trans people. However, I will say that I, a trans woman, found this book woefully wrong about what being trans is to me.

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Touching and Emotional

As a trans woman this book hits really close to the heart. I'm likely biased but I love this story so much.

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just so sad

just absolutely loved this book it made me sit there at the end and made me cry for just about an hour I still kind of got a little teary-eyed when I thought about it later that day when I finished it the second story really hit home for me my life is it in kind of like the story I don't know it just felt a lot different than other stories just absolutely amazing just want to thank the author and everybody involved especially the author I am definitely going to read this book again thanks for reading

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Wonderful story

The story was amazing, and the way it was all out together and read where great. But the story it’s self ended a little abruptly for me, 4 stars because I think it should have had at least another chapter. Other wise 5 stars across the board.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Beautiful portrait of Transitioning

The author provides a loving and insightful look at the journey of a young transgender woman from the perspective of her sister. It highlights her struggles with peers at school, the challenges of coming out to friends, and the horrible and often violent prejudice that is out there. It doesn’t dwell on the negative though, and points out just how supportive people can be, and would be a great book for anyone struggling with questions about their own gender expression.

Very well read.

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Raw and Real. Loved it!

Loved this book when I read it over a decade ago. Listening to it added to the experience.

Share this important book with YA and young-at-heart readers ready to deal with teen angst, family, scholl, and relationship issues.

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    5 out of 5 stars

Feels

I cried, this is such an emotional journey that relates to me so much. I feel so sad, but happy at the same time, the reader really sold it, like such a good book, 10/10 oh my God, such a rollercoaster ride of pure unadulterated emotion..

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Would have liked a better ending

Could have been so much better with a different ending. Maybe fast forward a few years to see what happened.

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good shit!

Lovely, relatable, and depressingly accurate. The description makes it sound more supernatural than it is. It's a good book, but the setting is definately reality. No gender transformation, Jekyl-Hyde duality here. No sir, but it good. Banned in Texas for some reason.