I found This Is How It Always Is to be moving, emotional, funny, and hopeful. The narrative follows the Walsh-Adams family as they raise their five children. Each child has their own distinct personality, but Claude stands out. Claude longs to wear dresses and carry purses, to the worry of his family and the consternation of the school system. As Claude decides to transition into Poppy, the family has to decide what to do with their lives and if they should make Poppy’s secret public.
I thought this book handled the topics it covered with grace and respect, and adored Poppy’s family and their acceptance of who she is. The writing was fluid and descriptive, and each character was well-fleshed out. My only complaints with the book were the fast time jumps and the somewhat abrupt ending. Other than that, this is a beautiful, important read that is topical and shows real, true emotion.