A heartwarming and honest read, Finding Nevo is a charming story of self-discovery and love.
The memoir deals with some complex and relevant issues such as sexuality and gender identity, and while these kinds of stories tend to take on a tragic or depressing tone, Nevo keeps it light and relatable, making it an enjoyable read that leaves you feeling satisfied at the end.
It’s a deeply personal book and Nevo Zisin lays everything on the table, welcoming us into their life and inviting us to just listen, without judgement. Their story is written in a way that can be understood whether you’re well-versed in gender and sexuality, or you’re still learning. Nevo treats the readers with patience but never condescension, explaining terms a cis-gendered reader might not understand but doing it so that it never feels like they’re trying to lecture us. Rather than reading like a textbook on gender theory, Finding Nevo feels like an experience that’s being shared with us, and that’s exactly what it is.
For a cis-gendered reader, it’s a comprehensive entry into the lives of queer youth, with the honest first-person perspective making the readers view Nevo as a person rather than a victim or an example. Many of Nevo’s experiences are relatable to anyone, which makes it easy to break down the idea of “us vs them” that’s too often pushed by mainstream media.
For trans readers, or anyone exploring their gender or sexuality, this book feels like a bit of relief. It’s a relief to read that someone has had similar experiences to you, or just to know that you’re not alone in the way you live your life. There’s also relief in knowing there is no universal experience and there are many paths that lead to self-discovery. Finding Nevo is hope, too; it’s proof that finding yourself doesn’t have to end in heartbreak and that you can find a community.
I feel grateful that Finding Nevo exists. It’s refreshing to see a book filled with so many positive things, a book that’s written by a queer person rather than about them. I hope there are more books like this in the future.
Finding Nevo by Nevo Zisin is available for sale here!