Friday, January 23, 2009

Hello, Cruel World

Nonfiction for the student services blog this month...

Hello, Cruel World by Kate Bornstein

Subtitled "101 Alternatives to Suicide for Teens, Freaks and Other Outlaws", Hello, Cruel World is an irreverent guidebook designed to help anyone and everyone navigate the sometimes cruel world in which we live.

With a foreword by Sara Quin of Tegan and Sara and a detailed introduction by Bornstein, a transsexual trailblazer who defies categorization, the book unapologetically provides coping mechanisms (some extremely unorthodox) and encourages readers to follow their "hearts' harmless desires". For Bornstein anything is preferable to suicide: do whatever you need to do to stay alive, just "don't be mean".

Hello, Cruel World is unconventional, eye-opening, and life-affirming. The layout makes it fun to read and because Bornstein makes a point not to exclude anyone, it's a book that can speak to everyone.

Here's one of my favorite blurbs about the book:
I realize Kate Bornstein is trying to save teenagers — the beautiful weirdos on whom the fate of our future rests—but if her book gets into the wrong hands, she might inadvertently save a whole lot of adults too. —Carol Queen
If you can't get your hands on the book right away, you can get your fix at Kate Bornstein's Blog for Teens, Freaks and Other Outlaws.

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