LGBTQ* Memoirs You Should Know
Second Son: Transitioning Toward My Destiny, Love, and Life - by Ryan Sallans
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Over the last few months, Ryan has become someone I go to for insight and advice. He has become a voice I trust for both personal reflection and recommended materials. Ryan has become a great confidant for discussing diversity and gender. His ability to stay open minded and to supply both personal and sensible insight makes him someone I often direct my friends and colleagues to. I can honestly say that even though we only know each other via the internet, I am secure in calling him a confidant and friend.
A few weeks ago, Ryan sent me an advanced copy of his book Second Son. I found myself curling up and diving into the text faster than most of the texts on my bookshelf. To say I was entranced by his narrative would be an understatement (so much so that I nearly missed dinner because I was too busy flipping pages).
If I can sum up the work in only one word it would be raw.
Ryan holds little to nothing back within the pages of this autobiography. He admits to his own insecurities, relationship woes, job hassles, hopes, laughs, and life experiences with the honesty we find only in our closest friends. He has created a narrative that allows us to have questions answered that we often wonder but politely refrain from. He speaks of sexuality and gender without resentment and deep understanding. His relationships are kindly shared with us and in doing so we are not granted picture perfect ending but real beginnings, middles and currently stands. He doesn’t paint perfection. He simply recalls his own truths. You can not ask for more from a biographer.
Second Son gives hope in the way few memoirs do. Ryan doesn’t promise anything he can’t deliver. There is no ending. Ryan never claims to have all of the answers. Within his book he makes only one promise to his audience: this is his story thus far and he is still growing.
If I could offer you one recommendation for you spring reading list it would be Second Son. I believe that no personal library containing biographies or gender theory is complete without it. With all my heart, I hope this book finds its way to every university and educational system’s self, for I feel it will be the book that gives hope to many and extends compassion to all.
(Ryan’s Tumblr Page)