2022 Reading Challenge

2022 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 5 books toward her goal of 260 books.

Book Review: The Agony, The Ecstasy and The Buddha by Rachel Eliason

This was a very interesting and unbelievably naked tale about knowing who you are and taking every step possible to actualize that knowledge. Rachel’s tale of her sojourn to Thailand for a vaginoplasty (perhaps more commonly recognized as Sexual Reassignment Surgery) is moving, painful, glorious, and a true testament to the power of perseverance and personal strength. This no-holds-barred book reveals every detail of her mental and physical transformation, and her story is a seriously powerful one.

I must admit, there were a fairly significant number of typos in my kindle edition that I found distracting (that’s the only reason for three stars instead of four). I spoke with the author about this; she said her editor had reviewed it and she’d take another look. I hate feeling like I’m niggling over details when I mention things like grammar and homonyms and subject-verb agreement, but honestly, when they occur this frequently, they do pull the reader out of the story (or at least they pull *this* reader out) and affect the pacing and flow of the book.

The author’s voice rang true throughout. The book provides a really enjoyable blend of personal anecdotes and factual information. And the descriptions of Thailand made me want to visit… Despite my remarks about errors, I thoroughly enjoyed the story and I’m glad to have read it. This is an important story, and it deserves its readers’ undivided attention. It is an unbelievably brave thing, writing so many personal feelings and experiences for the world to read. I think personal stories like Rachel’s have the power to help demystify – and therefore hopefully help remove some of the misunderstandings – surrounding SRS/vaginoplasty and the experiences of those who are not cis-born…

My review copy was provided by the author. This in no way colored my review of the book.

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