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"Tenderly and courageously told, Gracefully Grayson is a small miracle of a book. Its story is so compelling I found myself holding my breath as I read it and so. "Tenderly and courageously told, Gracefully Grayson is a small miracle of a book. Its story is Online Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky ebook PDF download. Gracefully Grayson book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Alone at home, twelve-year-old Grayson Sender glows, immersed i.

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Editorial Reviews. From School Library Journal. Gr 6 Up—In this sweet and thoughtful debut, Gracefully Grayson - Kindle edition by Ami Polonsky. Download it. Finn decides and Grayson gets the part, but not everyone is as excited as Grayson. The story of Persephone plays a large role in Gracefully Grayson. You may. Gracefully Grayson. by Ami Polonsky. Sixth grader Grayson hides his desire to wear dresses and skirts and other girls' Read more.

With an OverDrive account, you can save your favorite libraries for at-a-glance information about availability. Find out more about OverDrive accounts. We want your feedback! Click here. Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky ebook. Subjects Juvenile Fiction Juvenile Literature. Its story is so compelling I found myself holding my breath as I read it and so intimate I felt as if what was happening to Grayson was happening to me.

I felt rather sorry for the kid as he seemed to think that becoming a girl would be all skirts, dresses, and princesses. Things really pick up when Grayson tries out for the school play -- as the female lead. It's an important step in Grayson stepping out of his shell and reaching for the person that he wants to be, but not all of the adults around him recognize it as such.

I liked that there were no true villains. Some of the adults come close, but only because they're trying to protect Grayson from bullying that reaches the extent of bodily harm. Yes, sometimes adults have to overrule a child's wishes to keep them safe. It's a difficult conundrum, even if Grayson much prefers one side of the battle.

However, that doesn't make it a dull issue novel of the eighties. Ami Polonsky's writing is quite sweet, and she has a good knack for character.

I particularly liked the various girls who reach out and become friends with Grayson. There's also a brief appearance by a progressive mom that I really enjoyed. One day, LGBTQ books will be widely available for all age groups, and kids will be able to find themselves and their troubles reflected in the stories around them. Grayson's struggle is sympathetically drawn and very suitable for younger readers.

Jul 16, Melliott rated it really liked it Shelves: This book was so delicately and sweetly done. It's written from the viewpoint of a sixth grader, but not in the fairly typical way many writers do--slightly wry, with too much knowledge and self possession to really have been written by a child of 11 or This really feels like the mind of a child who is struggling with his image of who he is. He's largely inarticulate about it, because that's how many children are.

He comes to realizations through a combination of cues of self-awareness, flas This book was so delicately and sweetly done. He comes to realizations through a combination of cues of self-awareness, flashes of insight handed to him from the reactions of others, and a little guidance, both voluntary and involuntary, from the adults in his life. The evolution is wonderful to watch, and the outcome is so satisfying. In addition, the theme of the book will make it important to those children and parents struggling with the same awareness that how a child looks on the surface is not always who the child is inside, and that letting what's inside be what's important is both difficult and essential.

I kind of hate giving one of the very few middle grade readers about trans kids 2 stars, but I was pretty disappointed with this one. For one, it was slow and understated, and, well, sad. It just wasn't very fun to read. I can't imagine a lot of kids being into this book for those reasons. It felt like a bit of a slog to me, and I'm an adult. I've been trying to figure out what exactly I didn't like about this book, and there's the slowness, and sadness, but I think the main problem is that it feels like the main purpose of Gracefully Grayson is to evoke pity for Grayson.

To me, that means that it is a book aimed at "educating" cis kids about trans kids, not a book for trans kids for a book that does feel like it's written for trans kids, see George. I'm certainly not saying we don't need to teach cis kids empathy and about trans issues but evoking pity is not the way to do that. Do we need a kids book about bad thing after bad thing happening to a meek year-old trans girl mostly lacking support and agency and empowerment?

What does this do except make us feel sorry for her? And how does this kind of attitude affect real trans kids?

Gracefully Grayson

I'm not saying this book is intentionally offensive, but, well, the material is pretty tired. In a nutshell: Polonsky is really stuck in the "stuck-in-the-wrong-body" trope; despite my best intentions, I couldn't help but think of Grayson as a boy sometimes, even though it is clear that how Grayson really identifies is as a girl. There are even a few issues with pronouns: Also, I found it strange that Grayson was dressing as a girl and telling her family that she was a girl when she was younger, but at age 11 had no memory of this and didn't have the internal knowledge that she was a girl at least, that was shared with the reader.

This just kind of felt like a weird plot device to have Grayson discover herself and "come out" in the present of the novel. Also, also, also, despite that fact that this book is about a trans girl and is really only about being trans with a capital T, it never uses the word trans. None of the important adults in Grayson's life, even the ones who are portrayed positively, ever ask Grayson about her gender identity or use the word trans.

A few good things: Again, the portrayal of the aunt seems more catered to parents of trans kids who might be reading the book and needing a lesson than actual trans kids. Whoops I'm supposed to be highlighting good things. Well the writing isn't amazing but it's pretty good, with some nice turns of phrase. And I did like the plot device of Grayson getting to read old letters by her mom showing that her parents supported her gender expression. View all 5 comments.

Mar 18, Grace Galinski rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: This book was This is going to be a short review, but only because I don't know how to say exactly what I want to say about it. I though it was amazing. It's such a powerful book, and I was surprised that it wasn't longer. There were so many plot twists, and so much courage packed into a page book, and it was truly amazing. Amelia was one of my favorite characters, but only in the beginning.

Once she saw Grayson in the skirt, and how she acted when she did, made her one of my le This book was Once she saw Grayson in the skirt, and how she acted when she did, made her one of my least favorite characters. She may have almost redeemed herself in the end though, but not fully. Because honestly, if she was ever going to be Grayson's friend, she shouldn't have treated him like that. The ending was amazing, but it definitely had me wanting to read more.

I loved how the author decided to end it, but I honestly do wish there was more. I think seeing what happened after Grayson entered the classroom, and really what happened during the rest of his life, would've been great. This is a book that I wish everyone would read, because there's honestly such a great lesson inside. But I know, that with society the way it is, that won't happen. This book is so amazing, and so truthful, that it was such an easy 5 stars to give.

The writing style was also great, which made it even easier to give it the 5 stars. I guess the review wasn't that short after all View 2 comments.

May 21, Ms. Yingling rated it liked it. Grayson has lived with his aunt and uncle in Chicago ever since the death of his parents in a car accident when he was four. He fights a bit with his older cousin, and has trouble fitting in at school, so he's glad when he meets Amelia and they seem to get along. The two start spending time together, frequenting thrift stores where Grayson looks for shirts that are shiny and long and seem like dresses, because he is not comfortable in traditional boys' clothing.

When his dynamic language arts te Grayson has lived with his aunt and uncle in Chicago ever since the death of his parents in a car accident when he was four. When his dynamic language arts teacher, Finn, announces that there will be a play, Grayson is excited to try out for the main role of Persephone so he can have a reason to wear a dress in public. This causes some backlash.

His aunt is concerned for Grayson's safety, and is angry at the teacher for awarding Grayson the part. His uncle wants to allow Grayson to embrace his true self, but is also concerned. When Grayson's grandmother dies, a pile of letters from Grayson's mother resurfaces, and the family finds out that even as a small boy, Grayson preferred skirts and identified himself as a girl. Thinking it was a reaction to the trauma of his parents' death, the family ignored this, and Grayson learned to hide his true feelings.

The play causes any number of problems, including Grayson getting beaten up, but in the end, understanding and supportive adults help Grayson to start to deal with his issues of gender identity. This is the only book that I can think of about a transgendered tween, and it is written in a way that shows the difficulties but also provides hope.

The issue with Finn is realistically addressed as well. This is a highly philosophical book, and so rather a slow read. Not much happens except for the play, and books about acting and the theater are not at all popular with my students. I also thought that Grayson's reasons for feeling that he was really female weren't convincingly described.

Instead of being a loner who finally found a friend who was a girl, it would have been more apparent if Grayson had good friends who were boys, but he had trouble connecting with them on deeper levels. Aside from his love of dresses and skirts and the fact that Amelia and her friends wore them seems unrealistic to me, since girls at my school hardly ever wear skirts , there weren't a lot of other reasons described for Grayson's feelings.

Sep 05, Maria Elmvang rated it really liked it Shelves: Grayson's parents died in a car accident when he was very young, and since then he has been living with his aunt, uncle and two cousins.

He is very much a loner though - both at home and at school - because he is scared that somebody will get too close and discover the secret he's been hiding for as long as he can remember: Grayson is really a girl, trapped in a boy's body. But in 6th grade, admitting such a thing would be tantamount to putting a "target" sign on your chest. So instead Grayson hi Grayson's parents died in a car accident when he was very young, and since then he has been living with his aunt, uncle and two cousins.

So instead Grayson hides away in the library during recess and dreams himself away by drawing princesses that looks like doodling, and imagining himself in the pretty dresses he sees his classmates wearing.

Thanks to an openminded teacher and a new friend, Grayson gets the chance he needs to break out, when he tries out for the school play. Much of this book made for rather unpleasant reading. It is never nice to read about people being bullied, and even more so when that bullying spreads over to a person's home life. I hope Grayson grows up to trust his uncle, and that his aunt realizes what a disservice she's doing him, by wanting him to appear "normal".

I can understand her reasoning, but some things are just more important than keeping yourself "safe" from bullying which obviously doesn't work anyway, but somehow some people keep thinking it will. The book was a bit slow to start, but once the rehearsals for the school play began it really took off, and I found it hard to put down.

I loved how Grayson finally managed to find a place for himself in the school, and how he started to relate to the other actors. This could have been a 5-star read, but unfortunately the end fell a bit flat. I would have liked to see Grayson's relationship with Jack and his aunt be resolved somewhat. I'm glad Ami Polonsky didn't end it immediately after the play though, which is what I originally had feared.

I think it is an important book, and am glad such a book has been written for a younger audience than normal. Many thanks to Netgalley for this advanced copy. View all 4 comments. Sep 15, booksandbark rated it it was amazing Shelves: Grayson referred to herself as "Grayson" for the majority of this book, so that is the name I will be using in this review. This book made me cry rainbow tears. What I like about this bo Note: What I like about this book is that it hits the nail on the head.

Nor is it assumed that twelve-year-olds are somehow sweeter and nicer than sixteen-year-olds; Grayson faces the same challenges that one would imagine a teenager revealing she is transgender would face. Her classmates all gave very realistic reactions, as did her teenage cousin, Jack, and the rest of her family. Not all of them hate her for being transgender, and not all of the people who hate her respond in the same way.

Grayson was caught in the middle. She responds as any twelve-year-old would do: Jack is a teenager. At the beginning of the school year, Grayson makes friends with a girl named Amelia.

A play is used, but in a very non-cheesy way. You know how some books use plays as major parts of their plots? Yeah, Gracefully Grayson is one of them.

The cast of members in the play came to represent the wide range of reactions Grayson gets. Also, I wanted more of Finn, the play director and teacher who helps Grayson. Not in the story, persay—it was pretty much perfect the way it was—but maybe a novella or short story about what happens to Finn?

Pretty please?? Excuse me while I go sob in a corner for a little while.

She wants to know what it would have been like to have a mother and father, and if they would be different from her aunt and uncle, who raised her. She wants to know if they would accept her for who she is, a boy who is really a girl. Read more awesome book reviews at Books and Bark Dec 04, Jasmine rated it really liked it. He always thought he could hide this from other people, but he starts accepting himself when he tries out for Persephone in the school play.

Trying out for a female role made Grayson more confident about his unique personality and actually getting the role also helped other people accept that. The one person that is in his way of letting other people know this about him is his aunt. She almost stopped Grayson from performing in the play as Persephone, blaming the director of giving him a role that would make others laugh at him.

I feel like she is just trying to restrain Grayson because she thinks he is abnormal, not because she actually cares about him, which is why as I kept reading, my hatred for her kept on growing. The ending to the book was very moving and powerful, and it made me think about how Grayson was able to break out of his shell and show others who he was.

In the ending, Grayson goes into the bathroom and decides to change his outer appearance to how he feels on the inside. It shows that after all this time, he is tired of what people thought of him and decided to show others what he thought of himself and who he really is. It encaptures how people all over the world who have been hiding for a while about who they were can finally show to others who they are after a long mental battle with themselves. Sep 19, Andrew rated it it was amazing Shelves: Check out my review on my blog!

Mar 10, Hannah M. Wow, words cannot describe all the emotions I felt while reading this book. It was such a beautiful and moving story about Grayson Sender, a "boy" trapped into the wrong gender's body. There were so many twists and turns, so many emotions, and so much courage shoved into one page book. While I was reading, there was a character who I expected to be the one who helped Grayson become who they really were.

But I was wrong. In fact, she became one of my least favorite characters. It really shows Wow, words cannot describe all the emotions I felt while reading this book. It really shows how true friends can come from odd, unexpected places. Gracefully Grayson was so honest and so powerful, but there was one tiny bit that made me almost hurl my book across the room in the middle of writing class. And that was the ending.

In a way, I actually did kind of like the ending, because it kept you wondering. But I really, really need to know what ended up happening!! Overall, I absolutely loved this book, and I would recommend it to anyone. It's so truthful, and the writing style is amazing.

I'd easily give it 5 stars. I wasn't impressed by this book. Transgender is a strong and important subject, the author worked seriously on it, and the book is conscientiously written.

That's for the good points.

Alas the story wasn't sustained by the narration. The characters are functional but cruelly lack personality, the dialogues are extremely basics, repetitive and dull, there are so much things left unsaid that in the end very little is ever told. I'm all for show don't tell but the show here was sadly tepid and unimag I wasn't impressed by this book. I'm all for show don't tell but the show here was sadly tepid and unimaginative.

Another point annoyed me: Grayson is shy and rather boring, but I could have come to terms with that. But I couldn't stomach that all along the book femininity was reduced to some girlish attributes.

But even if he I would have wrote 'she' if the book had convinced me more behaved like a child most people are at eleven, I don't believe that being a girl should be about wearing pink and lavender, having sparkling shoes and playing with sparkling hair-clips girlishly.

The whole point of the book was to express that being a girl isn't about having two X chromosomes, and I don't understand this choice of showing such a restrictive image of femininity, even for- and especially for - very young girls. I don't really know what the essence of femininity is, but I'm quite sure that one can be feminine wearing trousers, sweet-shirt, having short hair, disliking Little Poney sparkling colors, and so on. I applaud the author effort, the read wasn't painful and neither was it botched, quite the contrary, but I found this book incredibly dull and uninteresting.

I was very more moved and marked by the account of a young girl, Corey Maison, who was born a boy, and had suffered a lot before being able to be what she really was, thanks to her parents. Please have a look at this beautiful video: Jul 03, Erin Reilly-Sanders rated it liked it Shelves: Although I questioned some of the details of Grayson's motivations for transitioning from male to female, I thought there was a lot about the book that was really lovely.

These kids going through puberty may be the most at need to be able to explore themselves and their comrades through the relative safety of literature. In this novel, Polonsky separates sexuality issues from Grayson's Although I questioned some of the details of Grayson's motivations for transitioning from male to female, I thought there was a lot about the book that was really lovely.

In this novel, Polonsky separates sexuality issues from Grayson's gender identity journey- it is unclear if Grayson is attracted to boys, girls, or neither if that may be of concern. On the other hand, I'd like a little more info myself, mostly because I'm curious, but also because the intersections of gender, sexual preference, and gender expression are really interesting. I was a little concerned that Grayson's primary interest with being a girl seemed to focus on clothing.

Although this seems like a pretty safe starting place, I also believe that it is entirely possible to want to dress like a girl and still feel like a boy. The depth of Grayson's femininity really isn't plumbed, but I suppose this is a relatively short middle grade novel.

Instead Polonsky focuses on the conflicts created by Grayson's desire to transition rather than the motivations for transitioning. However, I did really enjoy the fluidity of friendships and the realism of the characters. Apr 14, evelyn rated it it was amazing Shelves: The full review will be on my blog once this book is published thanks, NetGalley, for letting me read it this summer!

There are the confused, the uncomfortable, the fully-supportive, the ignorant, the tentatively-supportive, and a lot of other more m The full review will be on my blog once this book is published thanks, NetGalley, for letting me read it this summer!

There are the confused, the uncomfortable, the fully-supportive, the ignorant, the tentatively-supportive, and a lot of other more more multi-faceted reactions. We watch all of these reactions through Grayson's eyes and, like her, we have no idea how each person she reveals a small part of herself to will react.

Every time a little more of her real self shows, the reader feels that little tightness in the chest about how this will go.

Some characters surprise you with their kindness and some disappoint you with their bile. The way Polonsky builds empathy for Grayson through these moments is masterful, and what I think makes this book so important.

Nov 18, Olga rated it liked it. I think my reading slump ruined the reading experience of this book for me.

Eight days to finish a book of pages. I feel like I would've enjoyed it way more than I did if I'd read it when I wasn't in a reading slump.

This doesn't mean I didn't like it, or that it was a bad book. The writing was really pretty and the story was great. I also really liked the characters, especially Gray 3. I also really liked the characters, especially Grayson, Paige and Finn. I also really liked the topic of this book. I've been reading more books about this topic and I've really enjoyed all of them.

I'll definitely be reading more. I did like it quite a lot, but I don't think that giving it a 4 star rating is right in my case.

I would've enjoyed it way more if I hadn't been in a reading slump. Jun 18, Kelly rated it really liked it Shelves: I received this book for free I immediately liked Grayson. While I can't relate to his exact reasons for being bullied, I can relate to the bullying. The fact that a book like this was written for a younger generation makes me happy that people are bringing up the fact that there are major issues out there.

While I really enjoyed the book, I felt like the ending feel a bit flat, but I would still give it 4. Great book! Mar 23, Caryn rated it it was amazing. I read books for their characters, and this one has them fully painted.

I love Grayson.

Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky

Beautifully human. I'm so happy this book exists. This review is also posted on my blog. Things of note as I think of them: Grayson is a sweet cinnamon bun and is too pure for this world and i This review is also posted on my blog. Grayson is a sweet cinnamon bun and is too pure for this world and is my child now. I am her adoptive mother. This felt so messy and real and I love how not everything was fully resolved or ended on a happy note. It painted a very realistic portrayal of a situation revolving around a young trans girl and how shitty people will become about that.

Not everything was resolved — a respectful nod to what I imagine the real struggles of trans people are — but things were starting to head in the right direction near the end. Aunt Sally is a shit. Ryan and Tyler are shits. Jack might be starting to redeem himself, but that may be up in the air. The whole thing going on with Finn being in trouble for casting Grayson as Persephone. Amelia dropping Grayson as a friend after she caught her trying on a skirt in a store, still otherwise presenting as a boy.

Sebastian being unsure whether or not he really was friends with Ryan and Tyler. This was so good. Holy shit. This is such a healthy book for middle grade kids to read. Go read it, okay? Okay yes good. Jan 06, Danielle rated it it was amazing Shelves: Anticipating a snow day, I stopped in at the Briscoe Library for a book. I'm trying to get ahead on the reading for my Young Adult Literature class at Salem State this semester, and lucky me! Gracefully Grayson was on the shelf. This book is about middle schoolers, and sixth graders in particular my favorite kiddos!

Grayson is a smart sixth grader who has been isolating himself, feeling out-of-place among his classmates, but unsure why. Once he begins to befriend a new girl, Amelia, his circ Anticipating a snow day, I stopped in at the Briscoe Library for a book. Once he begins to befriend a new girl, Amelia, his circle of friends increases, and his confidence level rises.

His role in the spring play allows him to cultivate more friendships, to learn to handle conflict, and to realize the truth about himself that he had forgotten. I particularly liked Mr. Finnegan, the popular Humanities teacher. He uses a variety of small groups and class discussions so students can evaluate different perspectives on issues they study.

He invites his students to take risks, and encourages them to find their best selves. And, he takes his own philosophy to heart. Grayson takes the risk of auditioning for the female lead in the spring play, and Finn knows that this student would be great for the role, and so casts Grayson as Persephone.

For Grayson, this leads to deep friendships with other performers, as well as conflict with bullies including his cousin. For Finn, it is exciting to watch his student commit to the play and perform so well, but he also must deal with closed-minded parents and an unsupportive administration.

This book is not all happy ending, and that's important for middle-school readers to experience, also. This book has great imagery and symbolism. But at school, Grayson grasps at shadows, determined to fly under the radar. Because Grayson has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever: The weight of this secret is crushing, but leaving it behind would mean facing ridicule, scorn, and rejection.

Strengthened by an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher who gives her a chance to step into the spotlight, Grayson might finally have the tools to let her inner light shine. Bookmark This Page. Password Register Remember Password. Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky Title: Gracefully Grayson Author: Ami Polonsky Publisher: Disney-Hyperion , Formats: Gracefully Grayson.

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