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Number of Pages: 240
Publication Date: 2013
Where does a firstborn girl fit in a world dominated by men?
When Tiadone was born, her parents had two choices: leave their daughter outside the community to die in the wilds, or raise her as male and force her to suppress all feminine traits. Now, as the first female living as male in her village, Tiadone must prove her father didnt make a mistake by letting her live.
As her male initiation approaches, Tiadone knows every eye on the community is on her, and desperately wishes to belong and finally be accepted.But at every step, traditional feminine gifts and traits emerge, and the bird she's been twined with is seen as a sign of the devil.
Worse, as Tiadone completes her rites, she finds she is drawn to her male best friend in ways that are very much in line with the female gender.
Confused and desperate, Tiadone tries to become what she must be while dealing with what she indeed has become: a young woman who may be able to stand up to her despotic rulers and uncover her real purpose in life.
Lorie Ann Grover is the author of young adult novels including Hit, which Hypable calls "a powerful book about tragedy and recovery which shows you both sides of the story, for better or worse." She has authored Loose Threads, a Booklist Top 10 Youth First Novel, and On Pointe, a Bank Street College Best Children's Book of the Year. As a literacy advocate, she is a co-founder of readergirlz, which was awarded the National Book Foundations Innovations in Reading Prize.
Author: Lorie Ann Grover
Located in: USA
Submitted: May 01, 2017
Tell us a little about yourself. I am an author of middle grade verse novels, young adult novels, and board books, including: Loose Threads, Booklist Top 10 Youth First Novel; Firstborn, Kirkus starred review; Bedtime Kiss for Little Fish, Parents Magazine's 20 Best Children's Books; and The Magic Cup, with Dia Calhoun and Howard Behar, the founding President of Starbucks International. I am a cofounder of readergirlz, a National Book Foundations Innovation in Reading Prize recipient. My blog, readertotz, raises the profile of board books. My art clients have included Coca Cola.
What was your motivation behind this project? The motivation behind Firstborn was an article about gendercide, the extermination of a gender. At the publication of Firstborn, 37 million girls were missing in China alone. Over 200 million girls are missing worldwide. I had to write a book highlighting gendercide, and I was compelled to proclaim the worth and value of all girls.
What do you hope folks will gain from this project? Since the publication, I have rejoiced to see the end of the One Child Policy in China. I hope Firstborn creates a dialogue about the atrocity of gendercide and the value of women.
How were you personally impacted by working on this project? I was dismayed by the statistics of lost daughters in my research. And I was emboldened to speak through Tiadone's story.
Who are your influences, sources of inspiration or favorite authors / artists? The YA lit community is full of cheer and support from dedicated authors. Personally: Justina Chen, Dia Calhoun, Janet Lee Carey, Deb Caletti, and Beth Kephart pour inspiration into my work.
Anything else you'd like readers / listeners to know: For females readers, I hope you are empowered by Tiadone's story. For males, I hope you affirm and respect the women in your life, equal to you in the image of God. I pray we raise awareness of gendercide until it ends.