When I saw that I could request a reader copy of Ana on the Edge by A. J. Sass, I figured, “Why not?” As worse case would be I do not like the story and passed it onto a coworker who might. Lunch reading was slow going, so I decided to take it home and try and give it a longer at a time reading stretch. Unfortunately, that did not work out, as I needed to excuse myself for a two-day hospital stay. I did ask for the book to be brought to me, but it was not until a few days after I got home (sitting in the car waiting for a family member to be done with an eye appointment) I was able to finish.
I think the main reason I was not able to jump into the book was that there are several “first novel bumps.” The writing is not always smooth. There was a slow build up to the climax that might have been either shortened or had more “action” to it. There is a bit of repetition in talking about certain things and doing certain things and, to be honest, Ana was not always an easy character to like. Of course, when you find out more of their story, you learn why she is a bit selfish, a little spoiled and even not aware of what is going on around them due to their self-centered nature, she becomes more relatable.
However, the subject is an interesting one. It is about how Ana (and the reader) learn about gender. How some people are born “their gender” (most people she knows). Others are born into the “wrong” one (like her new friend Hayden). And how some people are neither. Or both. And Ana thinks they might fit into one of the later two. Or does she? Some areas perhaps are too idealistic but work for the ages aimed at (10 to 14). As said, a few areas can be slow but shouldn’t distract most readers as it is also an easy read.
Now on a slightly odd note: If you like Alex Gino’s writing, you could try Ana on the Edge. However, if you do not like Alex Gino’s writing, still try this book by Sass. I personally found the writing style and characters easier to get into and relate to. The afterwards by Sass themselves gives you a look into their own journey and learning who there are. This insight helps shed light on an area some people might not be familiar with and perhaps help adults as well as kids to deal with the issues or learning who they are/their child is.