Sissy (Hardcover)

A Coming-of-Gender Story

By Jacob Tobia

G.P. Putnam's Sons, 9780735218826, 336pp.

Publication Date: March 5, 2019

List Price: 26.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Description

A heart-wrenching, eye-opening, and giggle-inducing memoir about what it's like to grow up not sure if you're (a) a boy, (b) a girl, (c) something in between, or (d) all of the above.

"When the political reality facing this country seems dark, we need shinier, sparklier thinkers in the public eye. With a signature style matched only by their wit, Jacob fits that bill perfectly." --Alan Cumming


From the moment a doctor in Raleigh, North Carolina, put "male" on Jacob Tobia's birth certificate, everything went wrong. Alongside "male" came many other, far less neutral words: words that carried expectations about who Jacob was and who Jacob should be, words like "masculine" and "aggressive" and "cargo shorts" and "SPORTS!"

Naturally sensitive, playful, creative, and glitter-obsessed, as a child Jacob was given the label "sissy." In the two decades that followed, "sissy" joined forces with "gay," "trans," "nonbinary," and "too-queer-to-function" to become a source of pride and, today, a rallying cry for a much-needed gender revolution. Through revisiting their childhood and calling out the stereotypes that each of us have faced, Jacob invites us to rethink what we know about gender and offers a bold blueprint for a healed world--one free from gender-based trauma and bursting with trans-inclusive feminism.

From Jacob's Methodist childhood and the hallowed halls of Duke University to the portrait-laden parlors of the White House, Sissy takes you on a gender odyssey you won't soon forget. Writing with the fierce honesty, wildly irreverent humor, and wrenching vulnerability that have made them a media sensation, Jacob shatters the long-held notion that people are easily sortable into "men" and "women." Sissy guarantees that you'll never think about gender--both other people's people's and your own--the same way again.


About the Author

Jacob Tobia (@JacobTobia) is a gender nonconforming writer, producer, and performer based in Los Angeles. A member of both the Forbes "30 Under 30" and the "OUT 100," Jacob's writing and advocacy have been featured by MSNBC, The New York Times, TIME, The Guardian, and Teen Vogue, among others. A Point Foundation Scholar, Truman Scholar, and member of the Biden Foundation's Advisory Council for Advancing LGBTQ Equality, Jacob has worn high heels in the White House twice.


Praise For Sissy: A Coming-of-Gender Story

“When the political reality facing this country seems dark, we need shinier, sparklier thinkers in the public eye. With a signature style matched only by their wit, Jacob fits that bill perfectly.”—Alan Cumming

Sissy bravely moves the needle forward, boldly advocating for a world where people of all genders are treated equally and with dignity. A story of audacity and courage, Sissy is not to be missed.”—Billie Jean King

"Across this country young boys are shamed and humiliated for expressing femininity, as well as young girls for expressing masculinity. Jacob bravely seeks to end this culture of shame.”—Monica Lewinsky

“Refreshing, courageous, and important [with a] feisty candor and wit...A funny, sharply observed, and intelligent journey into self-identity.”Kirkus Reviews

Sensational. Gut-punchingly hilarious and full of heart, this is a book that’s sure to change your outlook and how you relate to others. Sissy is guaranteed to make your mascara run from happy and sad tears alike.”—Tyler Oakley

“Genderqueer and nonbinary voices are too often silenced in mainstream conversations about gender. It's why we need writers like Jacob Tobia, who offer us more inclusive visions and provide readers living beyond the binary reflections of themselves.”—Janet Mock

“[A] hilarious and candid memoir. Tobia thoughtfully and accessibly captures the anguish of being placed inside boxes that don’t fit—how ‘gender hurts us all’. . . Tobia’s outspoken refusal to be bound by social constrictions is admirable, and their funny, sometimes raunchy voice is a charming bonus.” Publishers Weekly

“[Tobia] is a gifted storyteller...Tobia writes extremely well, with insight, lucidity, occasional anger, and, when things get too serious, wit. The result is, hands down, one of the best trans narratives available; it deserves a place in every library.”—Booklist (starred review)

“Jacob Tobia’s story is one sent from the Goddess Herself. Truly inspiring, hilarious, heartbreaking & honest — Jacob’s thrilling truth will have an overwhelming impact on the LGBTQ community and beyond; giving insight to what it means to be trans and genderqueer. I am honored and grateful to be part of any community that Jacob is in.”—Jesse Tyler Ferguson

“As someone who has served as an icon and role model for gender-fabulous people for decades, it’s been wonderful to watch Jacob blossom. Their energy, verve, and luminosity of self bring joy to so many, and I’m confident that Sissy will do the same.”—Miss J Alexander

"Dear men, please read this book. Whether you’re sensitive, bold, gay, straight, pan, bi, creative, analytical, or don’t even know who the hell you are, this book is a blueprint for healing our gender-based trauma from the inside out. It’s brilliant and important and I couldn’t put it down.”—Jay Duplass

“Jacob is a unique and inspirational voice for living your own truth. I love their personality and message, and I can't help but creep on their Instagram ;)”—Gigi Gorgeous

Sissy aims its glitter cannon at all binaries, delivering, even in its final pages, a surprising amount of empathy to those who have not always been Jacob’s allies. This is required reading for every human being on the planet who wants to do better and be better. Buy the book and learn something about yourself, then send it to your problematic relatives.”—Garrard Conley

“A funny, heartbreaking and earnest account of Tobia's early and young adult life. . . Readers new to stories and identities like Tobia’s will find this memoir an especially welcoming introduction to the quite simple but still revolutionary notion that there are more than two genders.” Shelf Awareness

“Tobia shares their story in Sissy with candor, wit and sensitivity. Like Vivek Shraya’s I’m Afraid of Men, this is a book we really need.”Ms. Magazine

“In a world full of digital noise, Jacob's words cut right to the heart. A Mindy Kaling meets Roxane Gay treasure, Sissy proclaims what we all know to be true: gender nonconforming people are a powerful part of the past, present, and future.”Tommy Dorfman

"Gender nonconforming people like Jacob aren’t just a passing phase or a cool fad, they’re a fundamental part of our human family. Through embracing and empowering nonbinary people, we empower everyone to live a more authentic, glittering life. As a writer and an artist, I'm thrilled about what Jacob has to say.”—Dustin Lance Black

Sissy explores the power of determination, identity, and acceptance of self and others. I recommend the read.”—Cooper Hefner
 
"Most of the time in this world it feels like I’m drowning—we all walk around playing pretend, telling ourselves stories so that we don’t have to confront the things that lurk beneath the surface. And it’s not so much that Jacob’s work has ‘rescued’ me from drowning—rather it’s taught me that maybe there is something generative about remaining here—underneath—in the places and spaces and conversations that people avoid. It’s this commitment to honesty—in its most visceral sense—that makes Jacob so exceptional and precious."—Alok Vaid-Menon

“This is a book that every parent should read. We owe it to the next generation to raise children who celebrate gender diversity and are empathetic towards themselves and others; Sissy encourages just that. I couldn't be more proud of what Jacob has written.”Judy Shepard

“In a world that often pressures us to conform in order to be accepted, it is refreshing to hear Jacob Tobia's perspective. Jacob's style, charisma, humor, wit and truth telling are authentic to Jacob and I wouldn't be surprised if this book becomes a much talked about example of one way to own ones truth no matter what others may think. The world needs Jacob's voice, offering us all permission to be our truest selves.”—Sara Ramirez

“Filled with penetrating insight into what it means to live a life between genders that will also make even the straightest, cissiest reader cackle.”—Meredith Talusan
 
“As someone who came out as gay while playing in the NBA, I can say firsthand that being yourself against all odds takes guts. Through standing up for gender nonconforming people and living their truth for all to see, Jacob is blazing a similar trail. This book is yet another step on Jacob’s courageous road.”—Jason Collins

“For any young person who’s currently struggling with their gender, Sissy will be a source of strength, power, and much-needed laughs. From start to finish, Sissy is the kind of book that the world needs more of.”—Jazz Jennings