Storyline: Thea Atkinson brings to us a true Anomaly: a serious topic with a seriously great story that grabs hold of the reader and pulls through the twists, turns and, at times, amusing life of a person.
J is a man in the sense that he was born with all the ingredients necessary to categorize him as a man; only, J does not feel like a man. J relates more to a woman emotionally and mentally. J recently moved back to his/her hometown, is a recovering addict and has a best friend with a huge problem. The story follows J through a very eventful week and nearly past the point of no return.
Grammar/Spelling: I noticed some minor issues with punctuation and formatting.
Character Development: J’s character is incredible. The depth and breadth of him/her is astounding. As I said before, physically, J is a man. But, mentally, J is neither purely male nor female but a surprising mixture of both. J is evasive, but straight to the point. J is harsh, yet quite soft. J has a dark, moody sense of humor and a sort of strange confidence in who he/she is in this world. Even if the world does not recognize J for who he/she is.
I usually try to relate to at least one of the characters in the stories I read (even if the story is a light “bubble gum” story) and, after reading the blurb, I wasn’t convinced that I would be able to recognize anything in J that I would “get.”
I was wrong.
J’s full gamut of emotions – from masculine to feminine – is almost all too familiar. I think I was able to relate so easily to him/her is due to my duality as well. I am a through and through Gemini. Though, I don’t believe someone must be born under the sing of The Twins in order to understand, even to some minor extent, the pain and joy of J.
Writing Style: The writing style is both intense and engaging. Ms. Atkinson’s portrayal of “gender confusion” is outstandingly realistic. I think I’ll even coin a new (if it’s not new to you, it’s at least new to me!) phrase: “emotionally descriptive.“
It has quite a bit of adult language, drugs and sex. Though sadly, it has very little rock and roll.
Continuity: No problems with continuity.
Overall Rating: 5+
I must be honest and say that this is not a story for everyone and at first glance, I wasn’t convinced that this was for me either. Though, as I read more, I became hooked and had to know and to understand what Anomaly was. Ms. Atkinson did a phenomenal job portraying someone who walks the line between man and woman and someone who fights labels even as the world demands that they have one.