A coming-of-gender story about loss and finding freedom in change
Antiboy takes place at the messy intersection between gender and orientation, gender roles and relationships.
When Valentijn has to undergo a mastectomy because of a gene defect, he takes the decision not to have implants and adopts an in-between identity that feels more natural. He discards his wardrobe of women’s clothes, even the perfect dress his mother was so fond of, and shaves his head. But all of this causes friction, not only are the doctors stumped, but friends, family and lovers too. His trans ex helps him feeling more comfortable in his new guise – not a girl, not a boy but an anti-boy – and his boyfriend draws away from the relationship.
Surrounded by grief and loss, Antiboy searches for the ultimate freedom to be allowed to be himself and tries to rebuild relationships with those around him. This short, well-written book about outwardly adopting a new, but truer, identity is poignant without ever being sentimental.