One of the things I always do when reading a book is to read the author's note. These notes provide the reader with a greater understanding of what the author wanted to convey in their story. I.W. Gregorio stated in her author's note that she wanted her book to promote tolerance and acceptance. I believe her book does just that.
None of the Above takes you into the world of Kristen who is living a normal life. She finds it odd that she has never gotten her period but for the most part she believes she is a normal girl. When Kristen tries to have sex with her boyfriend she has extreme pain and goes to the doctor. After some tests she learns that she is intersex. When she confides in some friends the rumor mill starts making school and her relationships with other people difficult.
I felt that Gergorio's decision to write a book about intersex was an important one. I think that, like the characters in the story, many people have no understanding of intersex and how it affects the individuals who are classified as intersex. I found this book to be both educating and entertaining. I recommend this book to all readers interested in the topic and anyone who feels they are different. I give None of the Above 5 out of 5 stars.
None of the Above was definitely a page-turner; I finished it in 24 hours. Despite her unique condition as intersex, Kristin is a character most teenage girls can relate to: How many girls have been dumped? How many girls have been on the outs with their best friends? How many girls have felt shame about their bodies? I think the lessons taught in the book are very important. We live in a changing, diverse world and teen are going to have to learn respect and tolerance if they are going to be successful. Seeing the different as a threat is something we have to move past as a society. It is not enough for parents, teachers and administrators to send the message that bullying in any form is unacceptable; the most effective voices are one's own peers. I hope more and more kids and teens can embrace the "Be Kind" philosophy of R.J. Palacio's Wonder. I give None of the Above 4 stars.