BOOK REVIEW: Tainted Beauty by Yvy DeLuca

July 15, 2020

Tainted Beauty

Yvy DeLuca

Deluca is known to many for her ravishing performances on stage, The BollyWitch, a Lipsynch assassin with the sass to match, her eclectic intelligent performances are often the highlight of an evening. Deluca is a Queer Indian transgender woman and this book, her biography is also the story of her performance. From growing up in a role which was unsuited, uncomfortable and wrong, to learning to write her own script, produce herself and then become director of her destiny.

It’s a lovely addition to the growing cannon of authentic trans narratives which gives us insight into the authors’ life as they grow up in a world which demands impossible compliance. It’s also an insight into the spectacular diversity of our northern British Asian culture and coming out as Queer in a traditional Blackburn community.  The book is full of warmth, and has a depth of forgiveness for other people’s failures which is heart-warming, this a narrative of love.  It’s not all sweetness and light, and there’s plenty of graphic and difficult parts of the book, with painful despair held up to the light.

There’s a familiar  story at the heart of this book looking at the bullying, rejection and cruelty experienced by many Queer people, and the different ways we drown out the pain, but DeLuca always brings us back to the central narrative of this book; that following your essential self, allowing your dreams to grow and finding ways to listen to your own voice in a world which shuns you, gives you power and dignity. It’s not a story of transition but of evolution.

DeLuca also holds up a mirror to British Queer culture,  calling out a lot of cis white privilege, creating conversations about what real inclusion means, telling us how it is from her perspective. A good biography makes us fall in love with the person writing, not only learning about them, but understanding them. We understand her and DeLuca’s delicious book feels like we are eavesdropping over friends talking, the pain of grim times softened by the telling,  it’s naughty, honest and touching.

Out now ÂŁ19.99

For more info, or to buy the book check out the publishers website here: 

Gscene also has the immense honour of  featuring Yvy on our July issue cover, check it out here: