When I started reading Confessions of the Fox by Jordy Rosenberg, my first thought was “Why are there so many footnotes? Soooo many footnotes.” I haven’t seen so many footnotes since my college literature classes. There were at least five footnotes that just said “Pussy.”
It didn’t take long to realize that most of the footnotes were telling a story within the story.
Basically, the first story is in a newly found manuscript about Jack Sheppard, a famous thief and jailbreaker in London during the 18th century. Sheppard was a real person who was in love with a prostitute known as Edgewater Bess.
In the manuscript, Sheppard alludes to the fact that he is transgender. I’m pretty sure that he was intersex, born with male and female genitalia. His mother wanted him to be a female but Sheppard identified as being male.
After he escapes from his apprenticeship as a carpenter, Jack lives with Bess. Eventually, he has his breasts removed and his vagina sewn shut. I imagine he goes through a lot of the same feelings that anyone who goes through sex reassignment surgery. Hopefully, the surgical part of gender reassignment has improved.
The manuscript is being read and annotated by Dr. Voth, who is also transgender. He’s going through a lot of the same things that Jack is going through – trouble at work and trouble with intimacy. It’s interesting to see how much has changed and how much has stayed the same since Sheppard’s time.
I would give this book 4.5 stars out of 5. It’s not a quick read but it is very good. It’s also probably different than most of the books out in the world right now.
- I received an ebook from NetGalley in exchange for doing a review. All opinions are my own obviously.