Saturday, May 5, 2018

Balls by Chris Edwards

Title: Balls: It Takes Some to Get Some
Author: Chris Edwards
Cover artist: Deutsch
Genre: nonfiction, memoir
Length: 265 pages

Changing your gender from female to male takes balls. And if you’re going to do it in front of five hundred coworkers at the largest ad agency in Boston, you’d better have a pretty big set!

At a time when the term transgender didn’t exist, and with support from family, friends, and a great therapist, Chris Edwards endured 28 surgeries to become the person he always knew he was meant to be. He used the principles of marketing along with his ever-present sense of humor to rebrand himself and orchestrate what was quite possibly the most widely accepted and embraced gender transition of its kind. He’s a pioneer who changed the perception of an entire community, and his memoir, BALLS, will touch readers’ hearts and change quite a few minds.

Edwards is funny, brazen, and endearing, and BALLS is a hilarious and inspiring story about family, friends, and the courage to be your true self. It boldly and fearlessly goes where other trans memoirs don’t. If you’ve ever felt uncomfortable in your own skin–for whatever reason–you will be inspired and empowered by this book.

A portion of the proceeds of BALLS will be donated to Camp Aranu’tiq (, a nonprofit program serving transgender youth and their families.

I don’t usually review nonfiction, but this memoir touched me deeply. There is a T in LGBT, and I don’t always read it. I’m glad I did though.

Chris Edwards has a fabulous writing voice, and a light touch with what had to have been anything but funny at the time. From describing himself as a boy while still in preschool, to enduring all the medical procedures to make his exterior match, this is a detailed look at a transition.

Chris had a kind and supportive family and friends for the most part, and for that, I am extremely glad. None of this journey could be easy, but he’s very clear how supported he was. Every *trans person deserves this, and maybe a few people will read this book and be there better for their person in transition. This is how love does, world.

The story never flinches away from the medical parts, even some of the gruesome misadventures. Try not to be eating during some of it, even though it’s described humorously. Chris spent decades in marketing, and knows how to sell even the difficult aspects as “just what you need to do to be you.”

This is a journey of an amazing person. I think it should be required reading for family of transgender people, because the memoir is extremely relatable and may be helpful for when the person in transition doesn’t have the words. 5 marbles

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