The emotional toll of growing up transgender is just one heavy issue Fu manages to effectively explore in the scant 230 pages of this engrossing title. Self-denial and self-delusion figure prominently in the lives of both Peter and his father and the family falls apart due to the gaping chasm between parents and children, Chinese and Western culture, sex and gender. Fu doesn't sugarcoat Peter's journey; most of the book feels as bleak, jagged and raw as the frigid Canadian winters Peter endures year after year. Fu does a commendable job at creating so many fully realized characters in this book and, while Peter is certainly a character to be pitied at times, he never becomes pathetic.

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