None of the Above

None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio

None of the Above is a powerful and compelling YA novel about a girl who discovers she is intersex aged eighteen. Kristin is a hurdler with a college scholarship and a popular boyfriend who finds out that her chromosomes aren’t what she assumed. She has to deal with her identity in the wake of this discovery and then when the whole school finds out she is intersex. The novel is an uplifting story about identity, learning who you and others are, and finding out who is really there for you.

Gregorio has written a novel that will make many people think, with many characters taking similar journeys of learning to understand different people and how some things—like gender—are far more complex than some people may imagine. Most of this is through the experiences of Kristin and through her and other people learning about being intersex, but there are also moments of discussion about things like homophobia and transphobia which focus on characters learning to be better towards others and to set aside assumptions and prejudices. Kristin herself is likable and interesting, somebody who isn’t even sure how to begin dealing with her own identity and her existence in relation to other people. The teenage characters are pretty typical of a YA novel, with various interests and dreams relating to school and college, which is important in a novel that tries to show how crucial acceptance is in a normal, everyday context.

None of the Above is an important book, taking an identity issue and makes it part of a YA narrative that is similar to many teenagers—dealing with who you are alongside possible mental health issues and life drama. It is similar to books like If I Was Your Girl, particularly in showing both the great and terrible sides to high schoolers and their ability to accept or ostracize.