Alice Austen Lived Here

by Alex Gino

Ref: 16993

"Blood may be thicker than water, but shared community and experience are thicker than both". When teacher, Mr Watras, invites his class to enter a competition to suggest a new statue for Staten Island, best pals, Sam and TJ, who both identify as non-binary (and mixed race), struggle to think of a figure head who will challenge the canon of straight cis white male statues populating the island's monument-scape. Until, that is, they discover Alice Austen, 1866-1952: famed photographer, local celebrity, rebel and lesbian. A discovery which, in turn, brings Sam and TJ into a new embrace of family, community, legacy and pride. A coming-of-age story perfectly pitched to middle grade and a grand tribute to lesbian, queer and non binary lives from the past and in the present. 'Loved this book! Informative, challenging, interesting, great story' (Meryl, EY Consultant & Trainer, Letterbox Library reviewer). 'Finally a book which uses the word 'queer' in an informed, knowledgeable and authentic way. Also loved the subtleties of the changing languages of how we think and talk about gender identities and sexuality across history and generations of LGBTQ people. And all done in a way which is so switched on to a pre-teen readership' (Fen, Letterbox Library staff). Plus, once you've read the author backnote and seen the wonderful archive photos, you won't be able to resist looking up the very colourful, exciting and boundary-breaking life of Alice Austen. N.b.: author identifies as gender queer. Age 9-12, Paperback 169pp


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