Everyone thinks George is an ordinary boy—a pizza-loving, Mario Kart-playing, ordinary boy. They’re wrong. Secretly, George knows she’s girl, but she doesn’t know how to tell people that, and isn’t sure if other people would understand. She’s never worked up the courage to tell anyone, and isn’t sure if she ever will.
But when she finds out that the fourth-grade play is going to be Charlotte’s Web, everything changes. George wants to be in the play—a lot. But not as Wilbur, Templeton, or any of the other boy’s parts.
She wants to be Charlotte.
Determined to get the part, George and her best friend, Kelly, concoct a scheme to show everyone who George really is, once and for all…from the school bully to George’s mom.
I would recommend this book for ages eight and up, and in fact think that those eight and older should read it. It deepens the reader’s understanding of important present-day issues, and is at the same time moving, captivating, and amusing. The storyline is entertaining, and the ending is perfect for the story. There are more sophisticated and complex books about being transgender available for older readers, but very few are written for younger elementary schoolers, and that’s what really makes George stand out. The straightforward plot, believable characters, and focus on George and Kelly’s friendship make it appealing to younger readers, and it’s an excellent choice for book groups, or for kids and parents to read together and discuss.
Before I read it, I understood the theoretical meaning of being transgender, but reading George really helped me appreciate what it’s like, and how hard it can be. Not only was it an interesting and thought-provoking read, it was also a satisfying and enjoyable one.