Her novel caused a storm when it was longlisted for the Women’s prize, and is one of the most talked-about of the year. She talks to a writer and trans dad about LGBTQ+ families and the ‘Sex and the City problem’
Torrey Peters did not write Detransition, Baby so that you or anyone else could better understand trans people or, god forbid, be a better ally. “Those tend to be very shallow readings,” she says, not judgmentally but with regret. She does not want readers missing out on a deeper experience by earnestly approaching her debut novel – about relationships and the lies told to sustain them – as a 101: Intro to Trans course.
Yes, two of her main characters are trans. And yes, it is hard to see trans people as anything other than an “issue” these days. But her protagonists are also a single, directionless Brooklynite in her late 30s, a Chinese–American professional who becomes unexpectedly pregnant, and a messy man with a so-weird-it-just-might-work plan to unite them.