“Alice in Genderland: A Crossdresser Comes of Age” is a memoir by Dr. Richard A. Novic. So, a couple of points to make upfront. This is a memoir of a crossdresser that also happens to be a psychiatrist. I think this combination adds an interesting angle to the conversation. First as he points out this is the first memoir about a crossdresser specifically. There have been many from the transgender point of view but none that he or I have been aware of from the point of view of a crossdresser. Second the fact that he is a psychiatrist I think adds a level of professional insight into the topic that is interesting and helpful. He starts off where many of us begin with the memories of his childhood and the first times finding women’s clothing both fascinating and exciting. I found this opening section to be very interesting because of how much of it I could completely identify with and understand.

One of the issues I have with this and other books I have read discussing gender dysphoria is the language used. Depending on who is writing and when the book is written the language has evolved over time, He uses some, what I consider, outdated language. This does not take away from the benefits I took from this story. He identifies as a crossdresser, and then also calls himself transgender. He refers to transwomen as transsexuals, using the surgery as the determining factor. This distinction I think needs to be updated. He also uses male pronouns when he is Richard and female pronouns as Alice, I find this to be a very comfortable recognition of who the author is. He does get into defining many terms to bring clarity to his writing, and I think he does a great job of helping people understand the subject matter. I like how confident he is in talking about many facets of the lifestyle. He has many great stories of how his life evolved and how Alice evolved over time. Describing the key relationships Alice develops over time. Richard plans out how and when Alice will go out. The feelings of coming out to key people. He compartmentalized his life into Richard the professional, the man the husband and Alice the crossdresser, the woman and the lover. I think most of us would agree Alice is transgendered but that creates a great opportunity to discuss just what gender identity means and how it is evolving as we comfortably discuss the implications. I highly recommend this book for anyone trying to better understand the gender issues.

I have read a bunch of books on these topics and think one of the most important things I have learned through this learning process is that everyone has their own journey. No one can tell you what your reality is. Whether you identify as CIS, Trans or genderqueer; express sexually as straight, gay, Bi or poly, we need to give ourselves the freedom to be who we are. This book gives a strong voice to those who find themselves somewhere in between. There is more to this book than a simple reviewer can hope to condense into a paragraph or 2 so I hope you will read this book and share your thoughts. Being able to talk about our experiences and our feelings will makes us better people in general.

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Erica Inside

I am a 50 year old plus crossdresser. I love to wear something feminine almost everyday but have only gone complete a few times. I did go out and socialize with other CDs in my area. I have been hiding it for decades. Married over 25 years and trying to figure this out with my best friend. She has a real hard time with it but we are still best friends. I love learning more and more about just how similar and different we can all be.

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  1. Michelle Liefde 5 months ago

    Awesome, Erica, thank you for your insight and review on a book that I keep seeing pop up when I look for literature online. I plan on adding this book to my every growing list of stuff to read. Also, I agree the more that we talk with each other and share our thoughts and experiences we can see that we are not so different from each other.


  2. Falecia McGuire 5 months ago

    Thanks Erica! I own a copy of this book and read it when it was first published – about 2009. By today’s standards, I suppose, it is very outdated. I’m your “traditional” heterosexual CD, in the Virginia Prince style, although far more accepting of different orientations. That said, my most difficult acceptance comes regarding bisexuality. While I’m not denying that my crossdressing is sexualized, I have no attraction to men. I guess, as some used to joke, I’m a male lesbian. I love dressing, looking, and acting feminine, but I fantasize perfecting this process for fulfillment with a woman – my wife. When the author has male partners while dressed as a women, it fulfills all the horrible fears of women who want to or are trying to accept their husbands’ explanations that crossdressing does not (in their cases) involve same-sex attraction. But this is a memoir and I believe his truth. It is not my truth, but it is what most people surmise about crossdressers. I’d enjoy a memoir wherein the man perfects the feminine to the satisfaction of his loving spouse. And, that they have a great life together fooling everyone else into believing they are the best of friends – girlfriends!

    • Author
      Erica Inside 5 months ago

      Thank you Falicia, I really appreciate the insight. I had a real problem with that as well. While my marriage is not perfect, I could not handle that outside relationship. But like you said I believe his truth. I was very concerned as I discovered more about myself that I was hiding and oppressing an inner woman and not being true to my transgender self. I then started to accept that crossdressing can be a wide range of expressions. We need to stop letting other people shape us with their expectations. My wife said to me once my dressing would be easier ri deal with if I just transitioned into a woman 100% of the time. But that is not me. I believe transgendered women are women. I am not I am a man with a love and appreciation for all things feminine. Including rough women in jeans and sweatshirts. I did not like his use of transexual to differentiate someone who has had surgery. A person does not need a labia and or breast to be a woman. Just like a person does not need a penis and testicles to be a man. And an expression of masculinity or femininity does not make someone weak or strong. There is so much to go into here. Thank you for the conversation. And maybe you could write that memoir. I wish I could summon the courage. We need voices.

  3. *skippy1965(Cynthia) 5 months ago

    Falecia-thank you for the excellent review. I think I read this awhile back but I may go back and re-read it based on your review.(thank you Kindle Unlimited for making it much easier to check out many TG related books that are otherwise often difficult to find and prohibitively expensive).

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