When Jamie started binding, they knew that something had changed with them. As they begin to question why they bind and everything else, Jamie begins to realize something new: they might be genderqueer.
Why this book?: This book looked like it could be either very messy or very important. With the cover and summary, I wasn’t really sure–but I needed to find out.
I would like to thank the people at West 44 Books for allowing me to have an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Before I get into this review, I want to put down why I was worried about this book. First, the cover gave me a lot of worries. The person on the cover is not binding correctly, and binding like that can cause some serious health issues. I also really dislike the fact that this book is about a questioning gender queer character and the title is Some Girls Bind. I know that some non-binary/genderqueer people do use “girls” personally, but in a book about a questioning character, it felt weird to me for the title to be focused on girls.
In addition to the above, the publisher provided summary was very, very weird. They treated Jamie’s gender questioning as a terrible secret, one that they had to hide. And while that is the way some people initially feel about their gender, the way it was treated in the summary was also enough to make me question the insides of this book.
When I finally opened the book, I was … quite surprised with how much I ended up liking it and the representation. Jamie was a very under-developed character, but it was easy to project yourself into their life because of how general everything was. While that can be seen as a bad thing, I actually quite enjoyed it. Jamie discussed their gender openly with themself, and when they finally decided to come out to another queer friend. I loved how this book showed both positive and negative reactions when people come out. While it was hard to read about the negative reaction, I still appreciated the fact that it was included in addition to positive reactions.
The writing was also fairly simple. The book was written in verse, so descriptions and thoughts were fairly brief. That’s probably why everything was so general, but I thought it fit the story well.
This book was extremely short and honestly hard to read–in the literal way. The ARC was terribly formatted and repeated portions of the book over and over. In addition to that, because the story is told in verse, it’s nearly impossible to read on an e-reader. I emailed the publisher about these issues but they never got back to me.
Final Rating: ★★★★☆
When I started this book, I was worried how the representation would be handled. It turns out, the rep was just handled badly by the publisher, and the author did everything pretty well. I loved how Jamie questioned their gender and worked through it with help from friends and family. I also loved how it not only showed negative reactions, but also positive reactions.
Would I Recommend?
Totally! Although I would recommend not reading it as an e-book. The formatting was terrible, and it was hard to follow due to the fact that the stanzas were separated horizontally sometimes rather than vertically. Lines were separated and ended up ruining the formatting of the page.
Published: February 1st, 2019
Publisher: West 44 Books
Page Count: 200
Genre: Young Adult
Synopsis: via Goodreads
Jamie knows that she isn’t like other girls. She has a secret. She binds her chest every day to feel more like herself. Jamie questions why she is drawn to this practice and why she is afraid of telling her friends, who have their own secrets. Could she really be genderqueer?
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10 thoughts on “Review #204 // Some Girls Bind – Rory James”
thank you for this review!! i’ve seen the book around online and was a bit put off by the title too, but it’s great to know the rep is actually handled well!
Yea, it was a relief!! Thanks!
I have this e-arc to read myself. I’m glad to hear relatively positive things about it, though I’m not looking forward to the format issues. >.<
Honestly, if you have a kindle paperwhite or another tablet you can you read on, that might help a LOT. I had to read on my phone, which might’ve made it harder. I can’t remember the exact percentages when the repeating finally ends, but I can probably find what someone else told me!
I have a Kindle Fire, I think, but I’ll have to charge it/get it from the kid. Thanks for the idea to read it on there instead. I do usually read them on my phone, so that would’ve been a wreck.
Yea, for me it was. It’s not that long, so after you get past the repetition, it will go fast.
Also I found this when I was chatting with someone about the repeated: “Ooh! Figured it out! Skip from 34% (after THE TALK) to 58% (FRIENDS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN) and I THINK that takes care of the gap.” So just follow that when you do decide to read and that will take care of the repeating.
Yikes, that’s a *gap*. O.O Thanks for the heads up!
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