Parrotfish by Ellen Wittlinger

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Angela Katz-McNair has never felt quite right as a girl, but it’s a shock to everyone when she cuts her hair short, buys some men’s clothes, and announces she’d like to be called by a new name, Grady. Grady is happy about his decision to finally be true to himself, despite the practical complications, like which gym locker room to use. And though he didn’t expect his family and friends to be happy about his decision, he also didn’t expect kids at school to be downright nasty about it. But as the victim of some cruel jokes, Grady also finds unexpected allies in this thought-provoking novel that explores struggles any reader can relate to.

About Ellen Wittlinger

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Ellen Wittlinger is the critically acclaimed author of the teen novels Love & Lies: Marisol's Story, Parrotfish, Blind Faith, Sandpiper, Heart on My Sleeve, Zigzag, and Hard Love (an American Library Association Michael L. Printz Honor Book and a Lambda Literary Award winner), and the middle-grade novel Gracie's Girl. She has a bachelor's degree from Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois, and an M.F.A. from the University of Iowa. A former children's librarian, she lives with her husband in Haydenville, Massachusetts.
Published June 19, 2012 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. 304 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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At home, the family’s long-term, gaudy Christmas traditions (seven Santas on the lawn and an indoor Christmas Carol reenactment visible to neighbors) come to an end as a symbol of change.

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Teen Reads

Grady's younger sister Laura is horrified about what Grady's revelations might do to her reputation at school.

Jul 10 2007 | Read Full Review of Parrotfish

Common Sense Media

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Common Sense Media

When he starts to live openly as a boy, he's harassed at school by both boys and girls, faces resistance from school staff and an old friend, and even has some trouble at home.

Jul 10 2007 | Read Full Review of Parrotfish

Youth Services Book Review

Grady Katz-McNair is trying to live a normal life as a trans-gendered boy.

Jan 24 2008 | Read Full Review of Parrotfish


One thing that I liked about this book was the unlikely "Bromance" that happens between Grady and his best friend.

Oct 28 2010 | Read Full Review of Parrotfish

Pretty Queer

What happened in reality, though, was that I stumbled a little, tried to make eye contact and mumbled, “I’ve heard that book is good,” (I actually hadn’t heard anything about the book other than that it was a trans book, but I figured that the teen probably came to the teen reference desk to ask ...

Sep 29 2011 | Read Full Review of Parrotfish

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