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Being Jazz
Cover of Being Jazz
Being Jazz
My Life as a (Transgender) Teen
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Teen activist and trailblazer Jazz Jennings—named one of "The 25 Most Influential Teens" of the year by Time—shares her very public transgender journey, as she inspires people to accept the differences in others while they embrace their own truths.

"[Jazz's] touching book serves as a rallying cry for understanding and acceptance."—Bustle

Jazz Jennings is one of the youngest and most prominent voices in the national discussion about gender identity. At the age of five, Jazz transitioned to life as a girl, with the support of her parents. A year later, her parents allowed her to share her incredible journey in her first Barbara Walters interview, aired at a time when the public was much less knowledgeable or accepting of the transgender community. This groundbreaking interview was followed over the years by other high-profile interviews, a documentary, the launch of her YouTube channel, a picture book, and her own reality TV series—I Am Jazz—making her one of the most recognizable activists for transgender teens, children, and adults.

In her remarkable memoir, Jazz reflects on these very public experiences and how they have helped shape the mainstream attitude toward the transgender community. But it hasn't all been easy. Jazz has faced many challenges, bullying, discrimination, and rejection, yet she perseveres as she educates others about her life as a transgender teen. Through it all, her family has been beside her on this journey, standing together against those who don't understand the true meaning of tolerance and unconditional love. Now Jazz must learn to navigate the physical, social, and emotional upheavals of adolescence—particularly high school—complicated by the unique challenges of being a transgender teen. Making the journey from girl to woman is never easy—especially when you began your life in a boy's body.

PRAISE FOR JAZZ JENNINGS:

"Jazz is one of the transgender community's most important activists." —Cosmopolitan

"A role model for teens everywhere." —Seventeen.com

"Wise beyond her years." Teen Vogue
Teen activist and trailblazer Jazz Jennings—named one of "The 25 Most Influential Teens" of the year by Time—shares her very public transgender journey, as she inspires people to accept the differences in others while they embrace their own truths.

"[Jazz's] touching book serves as a rallying cry for understanding and acceptance."—Bustle

Jazz Jennings is one of the youngest and most prominent voices in the national discussion about gender identity. At the age of five, Jazz transitioned to life as a girl, with the support of her parents. A year later, her parents allowed her to share her incredible journey in her first Barbara Walters interview, aired at a time when the public was much less knowledgeable or accepting of the transgender community. This groundbreaking interview was followed over the years by other high-profile interviews, a documentary, the launch of her YouTube channel, a picture book, and her own reality TV series—I Am Jazz—making her one of the most recognizable activists for transgender teens, children, and adults.

In her remarkable memoir, Jazz reflects on these very public experiences and how they have helped shape the mainstream attitude toward the transgender community. But it hasn't all been easy. Jazz has faced many challenges, bullying, discrimination, and rejection, yet she perseveres as she educates others about her life as a transgender teen. Through it all, her family has been beside her on this journey, standing together against those who don't understand the true meaning of tolerance and unconditional love. Now Jazz must learn to navigate the physical, social, and emotional upheavals of adolescence—particularly high school—complicated by the unique challenges of being a transgender teen. Making the journey from girl to woman is never easy—especially when you began your life in a boy's body.

PRAISE FOR JAZZ JENNINGS:

"Jazz is one of the transgender community's most important activists." —Cosmopolitan

"A role model for teens everywhere." —Seventeen.com

"Wise beyond her years." Teen Vogue
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  • Available:
    1
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
  • Lexile:
    1120
  • Interest Level:
  • Text Difficulty:
    7 - 9

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About the Author-
  • Jazz Jennings is a trans woman, YouTube celebrity, spokesmodel, activist, and author of the picture book I Am Jazz. She has a docu-series about her life also called I Am Jazz on TLC, which started airing in July 2015. She was named toTime's "Most Influential Teens" list two years in a row, was one of Huffington Post's "14 Most Fearless Teens," and was the youngest person ever featured onOut's "Out 100," as well as on Advocate's "40 Under 40" list. In 2014, she was named a Human Rights Campaign Youth Ambassador and received LogoTV's Youth Trailblazer Award. Jazz also hosts a series of videos about her life on YouTube and is the face of Clean & Clear's latest ad campaign. You can follow her on Facebook, on Instagram, and on Twitter at @jazzjennings__, or subscribe to her YouTube channel.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    May 23, 2016
    Coming out as transgender, especially as a child or teen, often means declaring oneself in two arenas. The first is the intimate world of one's family; next comes the broader world of school, teams, and other institutions. Fifteen-year-old Jazz Jennings, a transgender activist and reality-show star who transitioned at age five, knows firsthand how much the first world matters: it makes it possible to take on the second. Her memoir doesn't downplay the teasing, the pain of being forbidden to play on the girls' soccer team, or the difficulty of finding romance, but it always circles back to her family's support. Jennings's account of how they listened to her, educated themselves, let her choose her clothes and toys, formed a nonprofit to support trans kids, and let her become a public face of trans life is both touching and inspiring. The upbeat and sometimes humorous narrative moves swiftly through the details of Jennings's upbringing; for readers looking for a candid introduction to some of the issues facing trans children and teens, this book is an excellent start. Ages 12–up. Agent: Joseph Veltre, Gersh Agency.

  • Booklist, starred review "Her story is an important addition to the slender but growing body of transgender literature and belongs in every library."
  • Publishers Weekly "For readers looking for a candid introduction to some of the issues facing trans children and teens, this book is an excellent start."
  • SLJ "The teen's successes and nearly limitless self-confidence and optimism will be reassuring for the family and friends of trans youth."
  • Laverne Cox, acclaimed actress and transgender advocate "I wish I had had a book like this when I was a kid struggling with gender identity questions. I found it deeply moving in its simplicity and honesty."
  • New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult "A terrific and timely book that explains to kids what it means to be transgender and -- more importantly -- that reminds kids our similarities are much more important than our differences."
  • Janet Mock, New York Times Bestselling author of Redefining Realness "All young people -- regardless of difference -- deserve the things Jazz shares in her lovely book: a loving family, supportive friends, and the freedom to be their true selves. A beautifully illustrated and accessible primer on one trans girl's journey of living her truth."
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    Random House Children's Books
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My Life as a (Transgender) Teen
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