This book answered a lot of questions for me on the depth of the ace spectrum. It also helped me find more about who I am and helped me find confidence in that.
I think this is a great book to recommend to someone who wants a beginning or shorter read on what the ace community is and what someone in the aspec would feel and experience.
How do we experience attraction?
What does love mean to us?
When did you realise you were ace?
These are such brilliant aspects of an alternative and positive approach to loving in a different way from societal norms.
Evocative, emotional and real.
Worth your time.
A bold and beautiful combination of personal experience and factual explanation from an older asexual, specifically one who was already familiar with the LGBTQ community for years past. Of the few asexual books published, I Am Ace stands out as an engaging and friendly introduction to the asexuality umbrella and gently leads the reader into new concepts while simultaneously providing reassurances that everyone experiences the world in their own way. The author doesn't try to serve as an authority on asexuality, but merely as a fellow asexual individual who followed his own path to discovery.
Books discussing being in the ace-spectrum is becoming more common and I love that. I Am Ace comes as another example of ace experiences and understanding for both the a-spec community and others.
The author brings great definitions and multiple experiences to support people on the a-spectrum and allo folks seeking to learn and understand more about how asexuality works. This book is also a great guide for those coming into their asexuality and trying to understand themselves better.
Thanks for this book!
Love seeing ace books. Diverse, educational and fun. Exactly what the community needs to become more engaging and understandable. I loved this book.
As someone who identifies on the asexual spectrum, Cody's videos came scrolling across my Twitter feed a while ago and their words completely resonated with me. When I first heard they were writing a book, I knew I wanted to support them in any way I could. I requested the book on NetGalley and was actually approved, but the book was archived before I had a chance to download the e-arc, so I had to wait until release day to actually get my hands on it. Well, several months after release, but I did get around to ordering a signed copy from Cody and sat down to read one of my most anticipated non-fiction releases of 2023.
I think 2023 has been the year of aromantic and asexual non-fiction, because I've read several. They each bring something new to the table, explore different aspects of these spectrums and the identities of the individuals who fall on them, and all have their strengths and weaknesses. I think where Cody's book shines is that it focuses solely on asexuality - it is key to mentioning how asexuality and aromanticism can be linked, and often are, but they don't have to be. It also balances advice with statistics with personal anecdotes, so it never feels like you're reading a textbook but it still feels like you're learning something new, whether about your own personal identity or asexuality as a whole. I think this book is perfect for allies who are starting their journey towards learning about the asexual spectrum and individuals who have even slightly considered asking themselves the question "hm, what if I'm not straight?" As someone more confident in their ace identity then I have been in previous years, I think this would have been an ideal read for me figuring out my sexual orientation, but that doesn't mean there wasn't plenty for me to gain from reading this book.
As always, Cody's words made me feel less alone in my ace identity, and now they've given me a book that I can look back on any time I need a little bit of advice from Ace Dad. Looking forward to supporting Cody in anything they do in the future. Highly recommend picking up "I Am Ace," as it's a great resource from anybody questioning their space on the ace spectrum, or those who want a good place to start learning about how to be an ally to the community.
I’ve read a lot of books on asexuality over the last year - and to an extent, I feel like most of them have had the same things to say in slightly different ways. Don’t get me wrong: I love that asexuality is finally getting an explosion of representation. And I’m very glad to see such consistently high-quality introductory texts. (It’s hard for me to imagine a baby ace choosing the wrong book to explore their sexuality at this point.) But it does make reviewing them a challenge.
If I could pinpoint one place where I Am Ace shines, I think it’s in the way that the advice presented can so easily be expanded to include any sort of queer identity. Yes, it focuses on asexuality and spends a lot of time in the beginning defining related terms. But it also examines the problems inherent in choosing a “forever label” when life is anything but static. It talks about the challenges in coming out. It normalizes mixed orientation relationships. It walks the reader through expanding their definition of “intimacy” and having those conversations with partners. All concepts that I wish were common knowledge.
So yes, I Am Ace is very introductory and the language definitely feels aimed at adolescents. But it strikes a perfectly delicate balance between supporting all individuals on the journey of questioning their identity - while still prioritizing the ace community within their experiences. And what a wonderful way to impact the world!
Now I don’t review Non-Fiction books very often, but this book holds a special place for me. I’ve followed @acedadadvice on Instagram for a few years and I was extremely excited to read this book!
Thanks to Netgalley for my review copy – this review contains my honest opinions.
At its most basic level, I Am Ace is a help book – a guide to exploring Asexuality. It’s broken down into sections which make it a manageable read, and a useful tool in helping someone think about their sexuality.
The writing is fab – as it's written by an author who actually is on the asexuality spectrum the book feels really authentic and reflective of the lived experiences of an asexual person. I also really loved how the book included both alloromantic and aromantic experiences as well as asexual ones therefore not assuming romantic orientation.
It starts at the basic level and builds to more complex ideas and advice for ace people. What I think is most useful for non-asexual readers is the definitions and explanations of the different terms that the book goes into. This was super helpful even as a queer and ace person myself.
This book really hit home for me – and I think it's going to be one of the few digital review books I’ve read that I’m going to buy a physical copy of. I’ve had lots of mental blocks about my queer identity and I Am Ace really tapped into a lot of those and had some brilliant affirmations too. If you’re an Ace person, I would definitely recommend this to help you understand more about yourself and provide some community in a heterosexual/romance-centred world.
I would thoroughly recommend this book to everyone – if you’ve ever wondered what asexuality is, or never heard of it, or if you think it’s not “real” sexuality. Both non-asexuals and asexuals can learn something from this book. Also, please follow @acedadadvice if you don’t already – it’s a fantastic account!
Happy Reading! x
So good! As an allosexual, I learned a lot about asexuality and what it means for people. Highly recommend for anyone wanting to learn more!
I really enjoyed this book. It gave such a great inside to the world of Ace and the aspects to it. The information given in the book really helped me learn so much more about asexual and understand all the different sub types. Cody really explains it all in such a simple and understanding manner while also brining across so much useful info. I can definitely recommend this one if you are interested in learning more about asexuality.
I loved this book! Very well thought out and researched, covering a lot of the facets of queer identities. Highly recommended!
This comprehensive guide to asexuality is a wonderful resource! As society learns new terms and labels with which to identify, it is so important to have books like Cody's - well-considered, well-researched, and communicated in a way that feels comforting and cozy. Bringing the Ace Dad Advice feeling into a book is accomplished masterfully!
This was a great intro for learning about asexuality! From someone who is on the ace spectrum and is trying to read anything and everything they can find about the ace spectrum this is a great tool! And I can't wait to recommend to other people in my life who are interested in learning more or are maybe even curious about if they are asexuality.
A fantastic little book exploring and explaining different terms and concepts related to asexuality- as someone on the ace-spectrum myself, it was validating to read and very accessible.
This is the book I wish I had when I was figuring out I’m ace. It’s a gentle guide for working out if you’re somewhere on the asexual spectrum, grappling with that, navigating existing relationships or starting new ones, how to establish boundaries for sexual and physical intimacy, and how to engage with queer community. It acknowledged that sometimes is sucks to exist in a society that doesn’t easily welcome asexuality, but it’s also filled with the hope and joy of living while ace. It's a book that leaves you feeling like you're in kind, safe hands.
One thing that niggled me is it was very focused on the ace experience of ‘feeling wrong or different from everyone else,’ and I would have like to have seen it articulated that sometimes that’s not every asexual’s experience of moving through the world. (Me, I’m talking about me.) However it is understandable since the book is framed through the author’s personal experience, and that was how it felt to him. But there was a ton of stuff that was very validating, and I think this is an excellent introductory book for people who are questioning, people who know they are ace but want to go over the basics, and everyone else who would like a glimpse into asexual experiences.
This is probably the quickest I've ever gotten through a non-fiction book, which is 100% meant as a compliment. The book is extremely accessible, with a clear, pleasant writing style, that's concise and to the point. I have personally been out as aroace for a few years now, so I didn't really read any new to me information, but I think this is a really good introduction to asexuality, especially if you're questioning, and a great starting point before you read more in-depth works, like Ace by Angela Chen.
I Am Ace is a fantastic book for aces and their partners, families and friends, questioning folks and other humans In their world. Cody walks through being Ace in the world, compulsory sexuality expectations, attractions vs. actions, exploring asexuality as a feature not a flaw, aces in relationships, and more. The book works hard on normalizing the presence of asexuality.
I Am Ace is exactly what the title tells you it is. It's a nonfiction book about being Ace and everything that entails and advices on living your Ace life to the fullest.
Overall, I enjoyed this. I loved that it was short and cut in small chapters and in even smaller parts within the chapters. I have trouble concentrating on nonfiction and that really help keep my focus. I feel like I did learn stuff from Cody's experience and I saw some of my own journey in it too. Not all parts were equal to me but that was bound to happen since everything cannot be about me. I was a bit bored from time to time but that's just my reaction to most nonfiction.
Still, a good book, I would definitely recommend to all my a-spec family.
Even though I don’t have TikTok, some of the best content always escapes that platform to find its way to me. Such is the case with Cody Daigle-Orians, purveyor of Ace Dad Advice. I remember watching some of his videos and thinking exactly some of the sentiments he shares later in I Am Ace: Advice on Living Your Best Asexual Life, such as “it’s so nice to see an elder ace!” Lol, we’re so predictable. But it’s also true. Ace people aren’t visible enough. That’s changing, slowly, and it’s good to see someone like Daigle-Orians helping to make that happen. My thanks to Jessica Kingsley Publishers and NetGalley for the eARC.
Although there’s a fair amount of “asexual 101” in this book—and that’s fine—what I value most about this book is exactly what the subtitle promises: the advice. This is a book grounded in Daigle-Orians’ lived experience: that of someone who came out as gay, then came out again as ace after discovering what that was, then started talking about it online and realized he could contribute to the conversation. As he shares his story, he offers advice, yes, but also reassurance.
Some of the advice is very quotable, such as when Daigle-Orians reminds us that “labels are tools not tests.” This is such an important idea to internalize, regardless of how one describes one’s identity. Daigle-Orians returns to this touchstone time and again, from an exploration of microlabels to a primer on the history and theory behind the label queer.
Much of their journey is very relatable. They discovered the asexuality label on Tumblr. Some people dismiss asexuality as being “Tumblr real,” so I suppose this makes Daigle-Orians somewhat of a stereotype, but there’s a reason it’s a stereotype. Though Tumblr, like TikTok, has largely remained outside my purview, I love how it creates these spaces where queer people can talk, lurk, and just exist, often outside of a cishet gaze. The emotions that Daigle-Orians describes as they navigate the discovery of their aceness—relief, trepidation, excitement, etc.—are going to be familiar to aces even if they came to their sexuality in a very different way. While I came to mine younger than Daigle-Orians and single, I feel like we still have a lot in common. It was really cool to hear them talk about how they had never been to a pride event until recently, for that was true of me as well (and in many ways still is).
Similarly, it’s so lovely to hear about his experiences as part of a polycule. I love seeing alternatives to our stereotypical ideas of what a family should be. The way that Daigle-Orians discusses his family, his challenges with dating while ace, the closeness he feels even to those members of his polycule with whom he isn’t in a sexual or romantic relationship—that’s neat. It’s wholesome, even.
Some of the advice and perspective here might be hard to read the first time round. At one point, Daigle-Orians levels with us: being ace is not always easy. Boy is that ever true. I really appreciate that he doesn’t sugarcoat his experiences. Sometimes I swing between these two extremes of thinking “oh man, I’m so glad I’m asexual,” versus, “sometimes it feels like it would be easier if I were ace.” Daigle-Orians addresses the sentiment that some people don’t want to be ace empathetically but sincerely: you are who you are. You can deny that experience, compounding your unhappiness, or embrace going on a journey to discover what that experience means for you. Being ace isn’t the best thing ever, nor does it doom you to unhappiness. It’s just an identity like any other.
Highly recommend for anyone who wants to spend some time listening to that elder ace’s perspective while you meditate on what being ace might mean for you. For allosexual readers: while this book cannot obviously capture everything about being ace, Daigle-Orians does their best to articulate one version of asexuality, acknowledging the limitations of this perspective by dint of being an older, white, male-presenting person. You’ll still get an interesting window into what it’s like being ace in a world that vacillates between denying we exist and telling us we’re broken.
The overarching theme of I Am Ace is that your asexuality does not need to define you, but it can inform you. If you let it, your asexuality can help you feel more comfortable in who you are—whether you’re cis or trans, younger or older, etc. When we realize that our behaviour is not the same as our attraction, that neither of these are destiny, that we can question and change how we identify throughout our life and build, as a result, a happier life—that’s powerful.
THE BEST book I’ve read yet on the aro/ace spectrum. Period.
I guarantee you that at the end of the year, this book will be among my best of 2023.
Why? The vibe is so warm and welcoming, and the balance of the joys and challenges of being aro/ace is just about perfect. Also, because it's aimed at a YA audience, its clarity and streamlined focus make it accessible to virtually anyone, regardless of age.
Going forward this will be my go-to recommendation for everyone seeking an intro to the ace/aro spectrum.