Detransition, Baby

A Novel

Detransition, Baby (2021, One World)

hardcover, 352 pages

Published Jan. 12, 2021 by One World.

View on OpenLibrary

5 stars (7 reviews)

A whipsmart debut about three women--transgender and cisgender--whose lives collide after an unexpected pregnancy forces them to confront their deepest desires around gender, motherhood, and sex.

Reese almost had it all: a loving relationship with Amy, an apartment in New York City, a job she didn't hate. She had scraped together what previous generations of trans women could only dream of: a life of mundane, bourgeois comforts. The only thing missing was a child. But then her girlfriend, Amy, detransitioned and became Ames, and everything fell apart. Now Reese is caught in a self-destructive pattern: avoiding her loneliness by sleeping with married men.

Ames isn't happy either. He thought detransitioning to live as a man would make life easier, but that decision cost him his relationship with Reese--and losing her meant losing his only family. Even though their romance is over, he longs to find a way back to her. …

My review of 'Detransition Baby'

5 stars

Another just stellar book! 2020 was a great year for some phenomenal fiction that I know I'll be returning to. Aimes as a character really spoke to me personally. His journey of detransition and return to masculinity was a window for me to consider my tenuous relationship with it. As a nonbinary folk I haven't attempted to sever my connection to it as fully as Aimes did during the transition to Amy (at least, not externally/publically). But I recognized a lot of myself in him. The ways in which transition demands authenticity, and how absolutely terrifying that is. And especially how much masculinity in our current society offers the emotional shield of never having to be authentic.

This book is a must read in my opinion. Whether your are cis or trans, and especially if you love someone who falls into one of those boxes which you do not.

one of the best this year

5 stars

Torrey Peters is clearly a super talent, and the way this book weaves between cute & sexual, introspection & snappy conversation, etc is a fantastic accomplishment. The ideas around unscrewing and redefining families give the reader a lot to think about. As a divorced cis woman who has never had any inclination towards having children but has grappled with my own existence in the gray area of masculine & feminine, I felt some validation in my own lack of cleaving to whatever the social expectations are (and I love the idea of not getting burned out in the future because of past relationship nonsense). I really enjoyed this one.


5 stars

I am still processing this book and probably will be thinking about it for a while still. I really enjoyed it—even reading late at night and in various states of lack of focus, it made me read slowly and thoughtfully. The complexities of gender and bodies and desire are more complex here than I’ve seen in other novels and it’s powerful for that. And the complexities of the main characters!! Their assumptions about cis straight women are laughably simplistic, which is the point. As a cis queer mother it was a bit weird to read with one foot in and one foot out of the assumed viewpoints of the book, in a way that is a lot different than reading the simplistic assumptions about women in cis men’s books (hi, trained as a Shakespeare scholar, have so much experience with handling that sort of disassociation). I should look around for …

Provocative, Indulgent, & Revealing...

5 stars

...Torrey Peters provides an emotionally charged whirlwind to her readers through flawed yet ceaselessly lovable characters. This groundbreaking piece on the transgender experience follows Reese - a transgender woman who longs to be a mother - and Ames – who detransitioned from a women and abruptly learns that he is an expecting father. This storyline unfolds hard, over three hundred pages that make you grimace, laugh, cry, and ponder over the conflicts of gender identity.

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