Children's Books

There are now MANY books available with affirming gender-related themes, including stories of transgender, nonbinary and gender-diverse children. Many are picture books.

See the other “BOOK” sections as well:

​   - AUTOBIOGRAPHIES

   - BOOKS & BOOKLETS BY PROFESSIONALS

   - FICTION

   - BOOKSTORES, AUTHORS, LIBRARIES

Links to online booksellers have been added to help research or buy book titles. Titles were searched on Chapters first (www.chapters.indigo.ca). If not found, the second search was on amazon.ca.  If unavailable from either, amazon.com was searched. Paperback copies were the first choice to add. Other formats are available for most of the titles. Local bookstores may have a book title in-store.

If you wish to borrow a book, check your local library. If they do not have the title, ask if they can do an interlibrary loan for you.

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Vivek Shraya on the importance of representation in children’s books

We speak with the bestselling author and artist, and share a list of must-read children’s books on gender identity in honour of Pride Month.

By Ameema Saeed. Chapters Indigo. July 2020.   (Canada)

“That would be a huge part of what inspired me to become a writer – it was the lack of representation.”  — Vivek Shraya

"Stories connect us and teach us empathy—but they can also serve as a mirror to help us learn more about ourselves. Children and young adults in the LGBTQQ2SIA+ community, especially those who are racialized, are often underrepresented in the books they read, and in the media they consume. To help address this gap, the Indigo Love of Reading Foundation partnered with the Skipping Stone Foundation—a nationally recognized agency that connects Trans and gender diverse youth, adults, and families with comprehensive, low barrier access to the support they need and deserve—to create a list of must-read children’s books for Pride.

    Vivek Shraya also understands the importance of representation. Shraya—as a queer, Trans, Brown woman and bestselling Canadian author and an acclaimed multidisciplinary artist whose work pushes the boundaries of music, literature, visual art, theatre, and film—is an advocate for the Skipping Stone Foundation. Here, she shares her thoughts on the need for diversity in school libraries, favourite reads growing up, and why she decided to self-publish her first book."

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Rainbow Reading

altView Foundation. Strathcona County.

"Listen to a 2SLGBTQ+ story, followed by kid-friendly discussions and an activity.

Live every Friday at 6:30 pm MST.  Watch via the altView Foundation's Facebook page.

Visit altview.ca/rainbow-reading for previous livestreams and materials needed for our weekly activity"

Click to see list of VIDEOS of books being read.

LISTS (bibliographies) & PUBLISHERS

OF CHILDREN’S BOOKS RELATED TO GENDER
 

11 Must-read books for Pride

A collection curated by the Skipping Stone Foundation. July 2020.

"The boy & the bindi / Red: A crayon's story / Pet / A family is a family is a family / Would you rather be a princess or a dragon? / From the stars in the sky to the fish in the sea / Jonny Appleseed / Jacob's new dress /  The other boy / Dress codes for small towns / George."

Flamingo Rampant website
“Hi! We’re Flamingo Rampant, a micropress that makes feminist, culturally-diverse kids books that celebrate LGBT2Q kids, families, and communities. Founded in 2012, we’ve been 100% #ownvoices since before it was even a hashtag. We remain committed to creating beautiful and fun books that kids love to read. Our books show loving, happy, peaceful LGBT2Q kids, families, and communities without bullying or harassment. Kids search for pirates, go to space, create magic, time travel, solve problems, make mistakes, rely on each other, teach, learn, explore – everything that children love to read about, without having to feel shy, bad or “different” about their race, culture, ability, gender, sexuality, or family style.
    You can have a look at our website to see what we’ve made so far! Our books include a lot of rad firsts in children’s literature, including the first book about a Two Spirit kid (written by Two Spirit folks) and the first queer Muslim picture book that we’ve seen anywhere, featuring two gay dads, a nonbinary kid, three adventuresome cousins, one purple moondragon, and one environmental lesson.”

Great diverse children's books with transgender, non-binary and gender expansive children

HRC Foundation (Human Rights Campaign).   (US)

This page has numerous suggestions of appropriate books. "Best diverse children's books with transgender, non-binary and gender expansive characters".

Reading
By Schuyler Bailar (Trans. Advocate, blogger, speaker)
Various book suggestions by school or age level.

 

Sexual orientation and gender identity: Recommended fiction and nonfiction resources for K-12 schools
This resource list has been compiled by Dr. Kristopher Wells (Edmonton Public Schools), Lindy Pratch (Edmonton Public Library), and Dr. Alvin Schrader [Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services (ISMSS), University of Alberta]
By Edmonton Public Schools and Edmonton Public Library. 2nd edn.

 

Transcend Australia: Reading, listening, viewing

"Transcend Australia has collated this list to help you find the books, zines, comics, graphic novels, podcasts and programs that will guide and inform you, your child, family, friends, colleagues and communities in understanding gender diversity better.

This list has reading material for children, teens/young adults, parents/carers and allies, covering fiction and non-fiction.  Everyone has their own tastes and preferences so we have gathered a wide range to select from. It’s not an exhaustive list  and are simply suggestions. This collection is an opportunity for you to gather information, discover and learn."

"Transcend Australia is working towards a world where trans, gender diverse and non-binary children are embraced and given every opportunity to thrive and flourish.  Transcend’s purpose is to support, affirm and celebrate the lives of trans and gender diverse and non binary (TGDNB) children and their families and carers.  Kindness and authenticity will underpin/guide/motivate all our interactions."

You are you

Scholastic Books. (US)

“6 Picture books about transgender children. Read these simple children’s books to help kids understand child what transgender means. Adults often say that children will get confused by too much information when really it’s just that the adults feel unable to explain the subject to the kids. These books will help that — they break it down and help parents explain the topic. When we have more information we can create more understanding.”

Books covered:

  • I am Jazz by Jessica Herthel

  • My princess boy by Cheryl Kilodavis

  • 10,000 dresses by Marcus Ewert

  • Red by Michael Hall

  • Jacob’s new dress by Sarah & Ian Hoffman

  • All I want is to be me by Phyllis Rosenblatt.

 

Stand With Trans children's books

Stand With Trans.  (US)

Bibliography. 'This includes an annotated list of transgender and non-binary themed materials, listed in alphabetical order by author’s last name.  The list includes (in order):

  • Children’s Picture Books - for littles of preschool and early elementary school ages

  • Juvenile Fiction and Nonfiction for elementary school ages

  • Young Adult Fiction, Biographies, Nonfiction and Magazines for middle school and high school ages

  • Books, Training Resources, and Articles and Information of Interest for Parents and Adults including Fiction, Biographies, Nonfiction, and Articles

  • Transgender Themed Documentaries, Feature Length Films, Television Shows"

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​LGBTQ+ BOOKSTORES – ALBERTA

The Glass Bookshop

Edmonton.

“Founded by Jason Purcell and Matthew Stepanic, Glass Bookshop is a new space in Edmonton, Alberta, that focuses on Canadian writing with special attention paid to queer and racialized writers.”

They also carry children’s books which are searchable with this LINK.

Glass Bookshop logo.png
Glass Bookshop photo of bookstore.png

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CHILDREN’S BOOK TITLES

99% Chance of magic: Stories of strength and hope for transgender kids

Curated by Amy Eleanor Heart & Abbey Darling. Copy edited by Eyota Wak'ishwit & Luna Merbruja. Produced by Luna Merbruja.  Jan 2020.  (US)

“Join Heartspark Press on an adventure of the heart in 99% Chance of Magic, the world's first literary collection for transgender children, all written & illustrated by trans women and (C)AMAB non-binary creatives. Our stories explore a variety of wonderous worlds, but one goal connects them all:  to cast a protection spell of hope and strength for transgender and non-binary kids everywhere."

"The twelve spells featured in our anthology are the following:

1.    A Shapeshifting Spell - written by Misha Lynn Moon & illustrated by Angel Sera
2.    99% Chance of Magic -- written by Alys S. Brooks & illustrated by Jeanelle Tabaranza
3.    A Rightful Queen - written by Vivien Al-Miqdam & illustrated by Aria Villafranca
4.    The Sisters from the Stars -- written by Amy Heart & illustrated by Wriply M. Bennet
5.    Valara and the Magic Eater -- written by A.K. Blue & illustrated by Caterina Gerbasi
6.    Can't Stop the Princess -- written & illustrated by Anya L. Archer
7.    My Story, Wolf -- written by Abbey Darling & illustrated by Sybil Lamb
8.    Night Light -- written by Duna Haller & illustrated by Clara Mejías
9.    From a Seed Grew a Girl -- written by Michelle Gannon & illustrated by Anya L. Archer
10.  Neshnaj, the Gentle Grey Giant - written by Xemiyulu Tapepechul & illustrated by Ariki Arts
11.  Melody Song & The Hymns of the Infinite Sadness - written by Amy Eleanor Heart & illustrated by Wriply M. Bennet
12.   The Unicorn of the Sea and Me -- written by Jun Almar'a & illustrated by Clara Emiliana "

10,000 dresses
By Marcus Ewert. 2008
“Every night, Bailey dreams about magical dresses: dresses made of crystals and rainbows, dresses made of flowers, dresses made of windows. . . . Unfortunately, when Bailey’s awake, no one wants to hear about these beautiful dreams. Quite the contrary. “You’re a BOY!” Mother and Father tell Bailey. “You shouldn’t be thinking about dresses at all.”

   Then Bailey meets Laurel, an older girl who is touched and inspired by Bailey’s imagination and courage. In friendship, the two of them begin making dresses together. And Bailey’s dreams come true!
   This gorgeous picture book—a modern fairy tale about becoming the person you feel you are inside—will delight people of all ages.”

 

The adventures of Tulip, birthday wish fairy
By S. Bear Bergman. 2012.
“Have you ever wondered what happens to your birthday wishes? Funny or serious, sad or wonderful, every wish gets read by a Birthday Wish Fairy. This year, David wishes for something his Wish Fairy has never heard of before – to turn into a girl.”

Are you a boy or are you a girl?

By Sarah Savage.  2017.   (UK)

" Tiny loves costumes! Tiny likes to dress up as an animal, or a doctor, or a butterfly. Tiny also prefers not to tell other children whether they are a boy or a girl. Tiny's friends don't mind, but when Tiny starts a new school their new friends can't help asking one question:   "Tiny, are you a boy or are you a girl?"
   This brightly illustrated book will open a dialogue with children aged 3+ about gender diversity in a fun and creative way. Featuring a gender neutral protagonist, the book imparts an important message about identity and being who you want to be. Tiny's story will assist parents, family and teachers in giving children the space to express themselves fully, explore different identities and have fun at the same time.

   Sarah Savage is a trans-rights campaigner and co-founder of Trans Pride Brighton. She is the co-author of  He's My Mom! and She's My Dad! and lives in Brighton with her family.

"A lovely, sensitive, much-needed book that helps all children ask the big questions about identity and gender.''   - Juno Dawson, author of  This Book is Gay

Backwards day
By S. Bear Bergman. 2019.
“Backwards day, set on the planet Tenalp, introduces us to a world where there are seventeen seasons, including one where bubblegum falls from the sky for three days and a single day when everything―everything everywhere―is backwards. Andrea looks eagerly forward to Backwards Day every year, so she can turn into a boy for the day. But one year she doesn’t turn along with everyone else. She’s miserable. The very next day, however, she turns into a boy―and stays that way! He’s delighted, but his parents are distressed, and take him to the big city to consult with Backwardsologists. When they finally figure out what’s happened, the miracles of Backwards Day are fully revealed.”

Be who you are

By Todd Parr.  2016.   (US)

"In a brand-new companion to his beloved classic It's Okay to Be Different, New York Times bestselling author Todd Parr encourages kids to be proud of who they are inside.
   Be who you are!
  Be proud of where you're from.
  Be a different color. Speak your language.
  Wear everything you need to be you.

Who better than Todd Parr to remind kids that their unique traits are what make them so special? With his signature silly and accessible style, Parr encourages readers to embrace all their unique qualities."

The best of Assigned Male

By Sophie Labelle, author and illustrator. May 2021.

"Follow young trans girl, Stephie, and her group of queer friends as they navigate school, family and relationships, and experiences of being trans.
  Humorous and acerbic, this ground-breaking graphic narrative brilliantly explores the journey of discovering and embracing your evolving gender identity, and promotes a sense of community and empowerment through artfully illustrated stories.
  Based on the hugely successful and influential webcomic Assigned Male, and in print for the first time, this expanded collection contains exclusive content as well as familiar, well-loved characters."

Born ready: The true story of a boy named Penelope

By Jodie Patterson. Apr 2021.  Sweden.

Jodie Patterson, activist and Chair of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation Board, shares her transgender son's experience in this important picture book about identity and acceptance.
Penelope knows that he's a boy. (And a ninja.) The problem is getting everyone else to realize it.
  In this exuberant companion to Jodie Patterson's adult memoir, The Bold World, Patterson shares her son Penelope's frustrations and triumphs on his journey to share himself with the world. Penelope's experiences show children that it always makes you stronger when you are true to yourself and who you really are.”

The boy & the bindi
By Vivek Shraya. 2016. Ages 4 to 8.
“In this beautiful children’s picture book by Vivek Shraya, author of the acclaimed God Loves Hair, a five-year-old boy becomes fascinated with his mother’s bindi, the red dot commonly worn by South Asian women to indicate the point at which creation begins, and wishes to have one of his own. Rather than chastise her son, she agrees to it, and teaches him about its cultural significance, allowing the boy to discover the magic of the bindi, which in turn gives him permission to be more fully himself.
  Beautifully illustrated with hand paintings by Rajni Perera, The Boy & the Bindi is a joyful celebration of gender and cultural difference.“

*** Click to watch VIDEO of the book being read ***

The boy in the dress
by David Walliams. 2008
“Dennis was different. Why was he different, you ask? Well, a small clue might be in the title of this book. Charming, surprising and hilarious – The Boy in the Dress is everything you would expect from the co-creator of Little Britain. David Walliams’s beautiful first novel will touch the hearts (and funny bones) of children and adults alike.”

 

The boy with the pink hair
By Perez Hilton. 2011. Ages 3-5.
“He was born that way - The Boy with Pink Hair. He had a cotton candy colored mop that no one had ever seen before . . . Life is not easy being pink. Adults stare at you, little children giggle behind your back and some kids are just mean. But when you have a best friend who appreciates your uniqueness and parents who are loving and supportive, you can do just about anything.”

 

Call me Max
By Kyle Lukoff. 2019
“When Max starts school, the teacher hesitates to call out the name on the attendance sheet. Something doesn’t seem to fit. Max lets her know the name he wants to be called by – a boy’s name. This begins Max’s journey as he makes new friends and reveals his feelings about his identity to his parents. Written with warmth and sensitivity by trans writer Kyle Lukoff, this book is a sweet and age-appropriate introduction to what it means to be transgender.”

Calvin
By JR Ford and Vanessa Ford. Release date November 9, 2021.
"In this joyful and impactful picture book, a transgender boy prepares for the first day of school and introduces himself to his family and friends for the first time.
Calvin has always been a boy, even if the world sees him as a girl. He knows who he is in his heart and in his mind but he hasn't yet told his family. Finally, he can wait no longer: 'I'm not a girl," he tells his family. 'I'm a boy--a boy in my heart and in my brain.'

   Quick to support him, his loving family takes Calvin shopping for the swim trunks he's always wanted and back-to-school clothes and a new haircut that helps him look and feel like the boy he's always known himself to be. As the first day of school approaches, he's nervous and the 'what-ifs' gather up inside him. But as his friends and teachers rally around him and he tells them his name, all his 'what-ifs' begin to melt away.
   Inspired by the authors' own transgender child and accompanied by warm and triumphant illustrations, this authentic and personal text promotes kindness and empathy, offering a poignant and inclusive back-to-school message: all should feel safe, respected, and welcomed."

“Calvin is a perfect book to help readers understand and comprehend the perspective of a transgender child. It’s heartwarming, honest, filled with beautiful illustrations and provides a comforting tool for any child who may be nervous about presenting their true selves to the world that surrounds them.” —Jeanette Jennings, “I am Jazz” TV series and President of the Transkids Purple Rainbow Foundation
“Calvin is an absolute delight. I couldn’t even get through the first few pages without crying happy tears. What a heartfelt, beautiful book—one that I hope every kid, parent, and educator reads. Chances are there’s a Calvin somewhere in your life, and I hope you take the time to hear their story.” —Robbie Couch, author of The Sky Blues
"Calvin is the heartwarming and affirming story all trans children deserve. Everyone can learn what acceptance looks like from this book." —Amanda Jetté Knox, author of Love Lives Here and LGBTQ advocate

 

Charlie’s best work yet

By Ris iRAWniQ Anderson. Feb 2021. (US)

“Charlie is a fluid 5th grader whom absolutely loves art! As the school talent show approaches, she navigates bullying, newfound friendship, and self-empowerment all while preparing for her best creation yet.”

Ris iRAWniQ Anderson (RAW), is the author of Charlie’s Best Work Yet, a beautifully illustrated children’s book about an artistic, androgynous grade school girl, who thanks to a fellow student, discovers and then finds strength in her newfound hero, Grace Jones. RAW is a non-binary masculine-identified author, alternative musician, voice over artist and actor and “momma to my 12 year old shy, yet brilliant boy.” They are based in Los Angeles. More about iRAWniQ here. @irawniq

Don’t mess with Edgar’s tutu
By Tania N. Newell. 2020
“Edgar is a trailblazer in his own right. Through this playful rhyming text and lively illustrations, this inspiring picture book shows a little boy embracing and supporting his choice to be himself unapologetically. Parents and caregivers of young children should pay attention to the critical role that Edgar’s teacher/adult played in this fun yet thought-provoking story about confidence and self-expression.“

 

Except when they don’t
By Laura Gehl. 2019
“This rhyming picture book encourages children to celebrate their individuality and lets them know that it’s okay to play with whatever toys they want to!
     Girls perform to fairy songs.
    Boys play football all day long.
    Boys yell, “Boo!” and run away.
    Girls like kittens and ballet.
    Except when they don’t.

Children are often told by many different people about what toys they’re supposed to play with, what interests they should have, and who they should be simply because of their gender. This stereotype-breaking book invites children to examine what they’re told “boy” and “girl” activities are and encourages them to play with whatever they want to and to be exactly who they are! This book is published in partnership with GLAAD to accelerate LGBTQ inclusivity and acceptance.”

A family is a family is a family

By Sara O'Leary. 2016.
"When a teacher asks the children in her class to think about what makes their families special, the answers are all different in many ways - but the same in the one way that matters most of all.

    One child is worried that her family is just too different to explain, but listens as her classmates talk about what makes their families special. One is raised by a grandmother, and another has two dads. One has many stepsiblings, and another has a new baby in the family.

    As her classmates describe who they live with and who loves them - family of every shape, size and every kind of relation - the child realizes that as long as her family is full of caring people, it is special.

    A warm and whimsical look at many types of families, written by award-winning author Sara O''Leary, with quirky and sweet illustrations by Qin Leng."

From the stars in the sky to the fish in the sea
By Kai Cheng Thom. 2017
“A magical gender variant child brings transformation and change to the world around them thanks to their mother’s enduring love.
    In the magical time between night and day, when both the sun and the moon are in the sky, a child is born in a little blue house on a hill. And Miu Lan is not just any child, but one who can change into any shape they can imagine. The only problem is they can’t decide what to be: a boy or a girl? A bird or a fish? A flower or a shooting star? At school, though, they must endure inquisitive looks and difficult questions from the other children, and have trouble finding friends who will accept them for who they are.
    But they find comfort in the loving arms of their mother, who always offers them the same loving refrain: “whatever you dream of / i believe you can be / from the stars in the sky to the fish in the sea.
    In this captivating, beautifully imagined picture book about gender, identity, and the acceptance of the differences between us, Miu Lan faces many questions about who they are and who they may be. But one thing’s for sure: no matter who this child becomes, their mother will love them just the same”.

 

The Gender Cool bundle

By Hunter Chinn-Raicht. The Gender Cool Project, Portland OR. Coming June 2021. Ages 5+.

Includes "A kids book about being inclusive", "A kids book about being non-binary", and "A kids book about being transgender."

The gender fairy
By Jo Hirst. Age 4+.
The Gender Fairy is a simple story about two children who find relief in finally being heard. It is a tale of two children who are taking their first joyful steps toward living as their true selves. It is an educational resource for all children and adults to understand what it might feel like to be a transgender child. For children aged four and up, The Gender Fairy is designed to be read aloud in the classroom or at home. It includes notes for parents and teachers to aid discussion and learning, completed in collaboration with Roz Ward (La Trobe University).”

 

George
By Alex Gino 2017
“When people look at George, they think they see a boy. But she knows she’s not a boy. She knows she’s a girl. George thinks she’ll have to keep this a secret forever. Then her teacher announces that their class play is going to be Charlotte’s Web. George really, really, REALLY wants to play Charlotte. But the teacher says she can’t even try out for the part . . . because she’s a boy. With the help of her best friend, Kelly, George comes up with a plan. Not just so she can be Charlotte — but so everyone can know who she is, once and for all.”

The unforgettable debut from Stonewall Award Winner Alex Gino. George joins the Scholastic Gold line, which features award-winning and beloved novels. Includes exclusive bonus content!
 

Gracefully Grayson
By Ami Polonsky. 2016
“What if who you are on the outside doesn’t match who you are on the inside?
Grayson Sender has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever:  'he' is a girl on the inside, stuck in the wrong gender’s body. The weight of this secret is crushing, but sharing it would mean facing ridicule, scorn, rejection, or worse. Despite the risks, Grayson’s true self itches to break free. Will new strength from an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher’s wisdom be enough to help Grayson step into the spotlight she was born to inhabit?
    Debut author Ami Polonsky's moving, beautifully-written novel about identity, self-esteem, and friendship shines with the strength of a young person's spirit and the enduring power of acceptance.”

He's my mom! A story for children who have a transgender parent or relative

By Sarah Savage. Sept 2021.    (UK)

"My mom's name is David. He used to be a she but now he is a he! Last year he did this thing called transition. He took some medicine which made his voice deeper and he started wearing different clothes."

    "When Benjamin's uncle accidentally misgenders his dad David, Benjamin explains why misgendering is hurtful and why we need to treat trans people with respect. Benjamin speaks with confidence about transitioning and gender identity, and helps to educate and empower others with trans relatives or friends.
  This brightly illustrated book for children aged 3 - 7 will aid discussion with children about a loved one transitioning or about trans people in general. Featuring a child with a mom who has transitioned, this book passes on an important message about acceptance and respect, and covers pronouns, dysphoria, family diversity and misgendering.

    Sarah Savage is a trans-rights campaigner and co-founder of Trans Pride Brighton. She is the co-author of Are You A Boy Or Are You A Girl? and She's My Dad! and lives in Brighton with her family.

The hidden witch

By Molly Knox Ostertag. 2018.

“From the creator of the acclaimed graphic novel The Witch Boy comes a new adventure set in the world of magic and shapeshifting -- and ordinary kids just trying to make friends.

Aster and his family are adjusting to his unconventional talent for witchery; unlike the other boys in his family, he isn't a shapeshifter. He's taking classes with his grandmother and helping to keep an eye on his great-uncle whose corrupted magic wreaked havoc on the family. Meanwhile, Aster's friend from the non-magical part of town, Charlie, is having problems of her own -- a curse has tried to attach itself to her. She runs to Aster and escapes it, but now the friends must find the source of the curse before more people -- normal and magical alike -- get hurt.”

His, hers, them & theirs: Learning pronouns with the bears

By Nick North (he/him). Kraft Heinz Canada.

Kraft Peanut Butter presents. "It’s storytime with Crunchy and Smoothie! Join them on their journey as they meet Nick North, friendly neighbourhood Transdad, and learn all about the importance of normalizing pronoun use.

   This book also includes a special section for parents to start the conversation with their kids about gender identity and pronoun use. Because creating an inclusive world is the best way to Stick Together."

"For Trans Awareness Week, we want to make the world more inclusive, so we’re releasing a book with our friend @wethenorths about the importance of using pronouns. Available on November 20th with proceeds going to @rainbowrailroad "

A house for everyone: A story to help children learn about gender identity and gender expression
By Jo Hirst. 2018.
“At lunchtime, all of Tom’s friends gather at school to work together building their house. Each one of them has a special job to do, and each one of them has a different way of expressing their gender identity.
Jackson is a boy who likes to wear dresses. Ivy is a girl who likes her hair cut really short. Alex doesn’t feel like ‘just’ a boy, or ‘just’ a girl. They are all the same, they are all different – but they are all friends.
A very simple story that challenges gender stereotypes and shows 4 to 8 year olds that it is OK to be yourself. An engaging story that is more than just an educational tool; this book will assist parents and teachers in giving children the space to explore the full spectrum of gender diversity and will show children the many ways they can express their gender in a truly positive light.“

 

I am Jazz
By Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings. 2014.
“The story of a transgender child based on the real-life experience of Jazz Jennings, who has become a spokesperson for transkids everywhere
“From the time she was two years old, Jazz knew that she had a girl’s brain in a boy’s body. She loved pink and dressing up as a mermaid and didn’t feel like herself in boys’ clothing. This confused her family, until they took her to a doctor who said that Jazz was transgender and that she was born that way. Jazz’s story is based on her real-life experience and she tells it in a simple, clear way that will be appreciated by picture book readers, their parents, and teachers.”


I love my purse
By Belle DeMont. 2020
“Charlie loves his bright red purse, so why does everyone else have a problem with it?
    Charlie loves the bright red purse that his grandmother let him have. One day, he decides to take it to school. First his father, then his friends, and even the crossing guard question him about his “strange” choice. After all, boys don’t carry purses. But Charlie isn’t deterred. Before long, his unselfconscious determination starts to affect those around him. His father puts on his favorite Hawaiian shirt to go to work, his friend Charlotte paints her face, and the crossing guard wears a pair of sparkly shoes. Thanks to Charlie, everyone around him realizes that it isn’t always necessary to conform to societal norms. It’s more important to be true to yourself.

    With its humorous, energetic illustrations, this book is sure to entertain young readers. It can also be used to open a discussion on gender roles.”

Introducing Teddy: A gentle story about gender and friendship
By Jessica Walton. 2016. US
“Introducing Teddy introduces the youngest readers to understanding gender identity and transition in an accessible and heart-warming story about being true to yourself and being a good friend. Errol and his teddy, Thomas, are best friends who do everything together. Whether it’s riding a bike, playing in the tree house, having a tea party, or all of the above, every day holds something fun to do. One sunny day, Errol finds that Thomas is sad, even when they are playing in their favorite ways. Errol can’t figure out why, until Thomas finally tells Errol what the teddy has been afraid to say: 'In my heart, I’ve always known that I’m a girl teddy, not a boy teddy. I wish my name was Tilly, not Thomas'. And Errol says, 'I don’t care if you’re a girl teddy or a boy teddy! What matters is that you are my friend'."

 

It feels good to be yourself: A book about gender identity
By Theresa Thorn. 2019
“A picture book that introduces the concept of gender identity to the youngest reader from writer Theresa Thorn and illustrator Noah Grigni.

Some people are boys. Some people are girls. Some people are both, neither, or somewhere in between. This sweet, straightforward exploration of gender identity will give children a fuller understanding of themselves and others. With child-friendly language and vibrant art, It Feels Good to Be Yourself provides young readers and parents alike with the vocabulary to discuss this important topic with sensitivity.”

It's okay to sparkle

By Avery Jackson.  2017.   (US)

Avery was 9 years old when she published her book with help from her mom.

“It’s Okay To Sparkle is the inspirational story of 7-year-old Avery Jackson, told in her own words. Avery was assigned male at birth, but has now transitioned into a young girl. Her book tells the story of how she realized she was a girl and how she helped her parents and friends to understand her transition. This heart-warming story covers themes of friendship, bullying and self-esteem. Whether you’re into dolls, ninja warriors or teddy bears, climbing trees, tae kwon do or ballet, this book lets readers know that it’s okay to be who you want to be. Avery’s words are incredibly wise and articulate for such a young person and she will undoubtably provide support and inspiration to other families in similar situations.

   The book is illustrated by Jessica Udischas, who offers her own perspective of life as a trans woman in her web comic Manic Pixie Nightmare Girls.

   It’s Okay To Sparkle was selected for the 2018 Rainbow Book List created by the American Library Association. The Rainbow Book List Committee evaluated 260 books highlighting stories with significant gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer/questioning content. Avery is proud to have her story receive this honor."

Jack (not Jackie)
By Erica Silverman. In partnership with GLAAD. 2018
“In this heartwarming picture book, a big sister realizes that her little sister, Jackie, doesn’t like dresses or fairies-she likes ties and bugs! Will she and her family be able to accept that Jackie identifies more as 'Jack'? Susan thinks her little sister Jackie has the best giggle! She can’t wait for Jackie to get older so they can do all sorts of things like play forest fairies and be explorers together. But as Jackie grows, she doesn’t want to play those games. She wants to play with mud and be a super bug! Jackie also doesn’t like dresses or her long hair, and she would rather be called Jack.

    Readers will love this sweet story about change and acceptance. This book is published in partnership with GLAAD to accelerate LGBTQ inclusivity and acceptance.”
 

Jacob’s new dress
By Sarah Hoffman and Ian Hoffman. 2020
“Jacob loves playing dress-up, when he can be anything he wants to be. Some kids at school say he can’t wear 'girl' clothes, but Jacob wants to wear a dress to school. Can he convince his parents to let him wear what he wants? This heartwarming story speaks to the unique challenges faced by children who don’t identify with traditional gender roles.’

 

Jacob’s room to choose
By Sarah & Ian Hoffman. 2019
“…the beloved lead character from Jacob’s New Dress, which is one of The American Library Association’s top 100 banned books of the last decade, is back in an encouraging story about gender expression. When Jacob goes to the boys’ bathroom he is chased out because the boys think he looks like a girl because of the way he is dressed. His classmate, Sophie, has a similar experience when she tries to go to the girls’ bathroom.

    When their teacher finds out what happened, Jacob and Sophie, with the support administration, lead change at their school as everyone discovers the many forms of gender expression and how to treat each other with respect. The companion book, Jacob’s School Play Starring She, He, and They  is coming in 2021.”

2020 ALA Rainbow Book List Selection

2020 NCSS/CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People Selection
 

Jacob’s school play: Starring he, she, and they!
By Sarah & Ian Hoffman. May 2021.
“Jacob — star of one of the most banned books of the decade—is back, and ready to put on a school play! While learning their lines and making their costumes, Jacob’s class finds itself unexpectedly struggling with who is 'he', 'she', or 'they'. Jacob’s School Play is an engaging way to introduce young readers to non-binary people and the pronoun options available to us all. Learning that individuals are more nuanced than how others see them is a developmentally important milestone, and helps foster respect of one’s self and one’s peers.”

Jamie is Jamie: A book about being yourself and playing your way
By Afsaneh Moradian. 2018.
"When free-spirited Jamie arrives at a new preschool, all the children learn that gender expression doesn't determine which toys to play with. There are so many fun things to play with at Jamie’s new preschool—baby dolls to care for, toy cars to drive—and Jamie wants to play with them all! But the other children are confused by Jamie’s gender expression . . . is Jamie a boy or a girl? Some toys are just for girls and others are just for boys, aren’t they? Not according to Jamie!  
  Join Jamie’s new friends as they learn the importance of cooperation, creativity, and empathy. Jamie Is Jamie is a great way to start a conversation with children about gender expression by: challenging gender stereotypes; showing readers that playing is fundamental to learning; reinforcing the idea that all children need the freedom to play unencumbered.
    A special section for teachers, parents, and caregivers provides tips on how to make children’s playtime learning time."

Julián Is a Mermaid
By Jessica Love. 2019. (US)
“In an exuberant picture book, a glimpse of costumed mermaids leaves one boy flooded with wonder and ready to dazzle the world. While riding the subway home from the pool with his abuela one day, Julián notices three women spectacularly dressed up. Their hair billows in brilliant hues, their dresses end in fishtails, and their joy fills the train car. When Julián gets home, daydreaming of the magic he’s seen, all he can think about is dressing up just like the ladies in his own fabulous mermaid costume: a butter-yellow curtain for his tail, the fronds of a potted fern for his headdress. But what will Abuela think about the mess he makes — and even more importantly, what will she think about how Julián sees himself?

     Mesmerizing and full of heart, Jessica Love’s author-illustrator debut is a jubilant picture of self-love and a radiant celebration of individuality."

A kids book about being inclusive

By Ashton Mota & Rebekah Bruesehoff. The Gender Cool Project, Portland OR.  Jun 2021. Ages 5+.

"What does it mean to be inclusive? Being inclusive is a choice we can make every day! Being inclusive means reaching out to and welcoming all people and everything that makes them who they are. When we learn to see the beauty in our differences, we can embrace the rich, diverse, and amazing world we live in together!"

 

A kids book about being non-binary

By Hunter Chinn-Raicht. The Gender Cool Project, Portland OR. Jun 2021. Ages 5+.

"What does being non-binary mean? For some people, the question and its answer may be new or a little confusing. It’s okay to not know what it means! That’s where all good conversations start. The journey to understanding starts with an open mind and an open heart."

A kids book about being transgender

By Gia Parr. The Gender Cool Project, Portland OR.  Jun 2021. Ages 5+.

"People often ask, what does it mean to be transgender? The truth is there isn't one answer. Gender is uniquely beautiful, and each person's experience is individual to them. But at its core, it’s all about knowing who you are and having the courage, freedom, and support to live life being your truest self."

Let me out!

by Omid Razavi.  Pop-up book. Ages 3-5.  2019.    (Toronto/Canada)

LGBTQ+"...children's pop-up book celebrating the coming out journey. This fun and interactive 26-page pop-up book embraces the messaging of diversity, acceptance, and embracing your truths, especially within the LGBTQ+ community."

​​

The Lotterys plus one

By Emma Donoghu.  2017.  Grades 4-6.

“Sumac Lottery has a pretty sweet life. Four parents (in two loving couples), six siblings, five pets, and a big old house in Toronto. Her world is turned upside down when Grumps, an estranged grandparent, comes to stay. Grumps, who has dementia and is often disoriented, doesn't approve of anything he sees at the Lotterys' house, and Sumac doesn't approve of him one bit. Grumps is, well, grumpy and set in his somewhat bigoted ways, and the Lotterys are a lot to take in.

    Donoghue is the author of many acclaimed books for adults, and her first title for young readers is a kind of realistic fantasy, a warmhearted, deeply improbable, emotionally alert jumble of ancient Sumerian, lottery winnings, elaborate family rituals, gelato, and acceptance.

    Many issues are touched upon in this novel, including homeschooling, gender fluidity, and diverse cultural traditions; in Donoghue's capable hands, they are treated with a cheerful self-awareness that lends itself to a timely and funny reading experience.”

Max and the talent show
By Kyle Lukoff. 2020
“Max picks the perfect dress, shoes, and more to shine in the school talent show, but once on stage he needs his best friend and assistant, Steven, to figure out what to perform.”

Me and my dysphoria monster: An empowering story to help children cope with gender dysphoria

By Laura Kate Dale. Forthcoming Aug 17, 2022.

"Nisha's monster follows her everywhere. It used to be small, but recently her monster has begun to grow. And as her monster gets bigger and bigger, Nisha feels more and more unlike herself. 

​   When people refer to her as a boy, or when she tries to hide her true gender identity, Nisha's dysphoria monster grows larger and larger. Until, one day, Nisha meets Jack - a trans man - who shows Nisha how she can shrink her dysphoria monster back down to size.

   This touching story is the perfect book for discussing gender dysphoria with children, explaining what it is and how they and their families can deal with it. It also includes an accompanying guide for parents with further information about gender dysphoria, terminology, and first-hand examples of the author's own experiences."

 

The midwinter witch

By Molly Knox Ostertag.  2019.

“The acclaimed graphic novel world of The Witch Boy and The Hidden Witch comes to a thrilling conclusion in this story of friendship, family, and finding your true power.

   Magic has a dark side . . . Aster always looks forward to the Midwinter Festival, a reunion of the entire Vanissen family that includes competitions in witchery and shapeshifting. This year, he's especially excited to compete in the annual Jolrun tournament-as a witch. He's determined to show everyone that he's proud of who he is and what he's learned, but he knows it won't be easy to defy tradition.

   Ariel has darker things on her mind than the Festival-like the mysterious witch who's been visiting her dreams, claiming to know the truth about Ariel's past. She appreciates everything the Vanissens have done for her. But Ariel still craves a place where she truly belongs. The Festival is a whirlwind of excitement and activity, but for Aster and Ariel, nothing goes according to plan. When a powerful and sinister force invades the reunion, threatening to destroy everything the young witches have fought for, can they find the courage to fight it together? Or will dark magic tear them apart?”

Morris Micklewhite and the tangerine dress
By Christine Baldachinno. 2014.   (Canada)
“Morris is a little boy who loves using his imagination. He dreams about having space adventures, paints beautiful pictures and sings the loudest during circle time. But most of all, Morris loves his classroom’s dress-up center — he loves wearing the tangerine dress. But the children in Morris’s class don’t understand. Dresses, they say, are for girls. And Morris certainly isn’t welcome in the spaceship some of his classmates are building. Astronauts, they say, don’t wear dresses.

    One day when Morris feels all alone, and sick from the taunts of his classmates, his mother lets him stay home from school. Morris reads about elephants, and puts together a puzzle, and dreams of a fantastic space adventure with his cat, Moo. Inspired by his dream, Morris paints the incredible scene he saw, and brings it with him to school. He builds his own spaceship, hangs his painting on the front of it and takes two of his classmates on an outer space adventure.

     With warm, dreamy illustrations Isabelle Malenfant perfectly captures Morris’s vulnerability and the vibrancy of his imagination. This is a sweetly told story about the courage and creativity it takes to be different.“

Muffy was fluffy

By Rikki Marie-josée Dubois. 2019.   (Manitoba author / Canada)

"Many people are finding that the gender in which they were raised is not the one that they are comfortable with. Whether they are changing from male to female or female to male, these changes affect everybody in the person's life. The changes are required in order for the person to live fully and completely as their true selves.

   How does one explain to a young child why their loved one is changing their gender? "Muffy was Fluffy" was written to show young children how a beloved pet, Fluffy, is not comfortable with the way she was born and in order to be truly happy, she must change into Muffy, the type of pet she was meant to be."

"Rikki is a university educated transgender woman from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. After suffering from depression her whole life, Rikki realized at 45 years old that the depression was caused by Rikki living her life as male while having a female brain. While researching information on gender dysphoria, she realized that there are no books available to help young children understand why a parent or loved one should change their gender. So she wrote Muffy was Fluffy. Rikki currently lives with her partner and their black Pomeranian named Tux and their terrier cross named Spirit. She is the parent of two adult sons who accept her for who she is."

See VIDEO of Kerri Isham reading this book.

My awesome brother: A children's book about transgender acceptance

By Lise Frances.  2019.  Ages 4+.   (Canada)

"Do you wish to teach your child about different facets of gender diversity or do you have a family member who is transitioning? My Awesome Brother is written from a young child’s perspective when an adored older sibling is transitioning. It follows the younger child’s efforts to be supportive and the joy they both feel after the transition.

    It is written for children aged four and older, to start a conversation around gender diversity. It is a useful tool for families and friends of the transgender community. It can be read by people of all ages to gain an insight to the gender diverse world or read to children who are seeing gender diversity in their family or friends."

 

My princess boy

By Cheryl Kilodavis. 2010
“A heartwarming book about unconditional love and one remarkable family.
Dyson loves pink, sparkly things. Sometimes he wears dresses. Sometimes he wears jeans. He likes to wear his princess tiara, even when climbing trees. He’s a Princess Boy. Inspired by the author’s son, and by her own initial struggles to understand, this heartwarming book is a call for tolerance and an end to bullying and judgments. The world is a brighter place when we accept everyone for who they are.”

 

My rainbow
By DeShanna Neal, Trinity Neal. 2020. Age 4-8.
“A dedicated mom puts love into action as she creates the perfect rainbow-colored wig for her transgender daughter, based on the real-life experience of mother-daughter advocate duo Trinity and DeShanna Neal.
  Warm morning sunlight and love fill the Neal home. And on one quiet day, playtime leads to an important realization: Trinity wants long hair like her dolls. She needs it to express who she truly is. So her family decides to take a trip to the beauty supply store, but none of the wigs is the perfect fit. Determined, Mom leaves with bundles of hair in hand, ready to craft a wig as colorful and vibrant as her daughter is.

    With powerful text by Trinity and DeShanna Neal and radiant art by Art Twink, My Rainbow is a celebration of showing up as our full selves with the people who have seen us fully all along.”

--- Article on Trinity:

How one trans 12-year-old is planning on changing the narrative
By Taylor Lewis. Essence. Sept 2016
“From a young age, Trinity Neal knew that she wasn’t a boy. Now, she’s hoping her story will help make trans acceptance the norm.”

 

My shadow Is pink
By Scott Stuart. April 2021.
My Shadow Is Pink is a beautifully written rhyming story that touches on the subjects of gender identity, self acceptance, equality and diversity. Inspired by the author’s own little boy, the main character likes princesses, fairies and things 'not for boys.' He soon learns (through the support of his dad) that everyone has a shadow that they sometimes feel they need to hide. This is an important book for a new generation of children (and adults alike) which exemplifies the concepts of unconditional love, respect and positive parenting. Empowers LBGTQ children and the wider community with its strong and powerful message. Encourages self love and acceptance. Teaches children the concept of diversity, equality and inclusion. Creates opportunity for open discussion and learning. Highlights current themes of gender identity. Bright and colorful illustrations by Scott Stuart.”

My sister, Daisy

By Adria Karlsson. Aug 2021.

"Daisy's older brother is thrilled when he gets a new sibling. They are best buddies who do everything together. But in kindergarten, things change. His sibling tells him she is a girl and wants to be called Daisy. Daisy's brother must adjust to the change--including what it means for him and their relationship. A powerful, moving picture book based on a true story, My Sister, Daisy handles a sensitive subject with warmth and love."
 

The name I call myself
By Hasan Namir. Illustrated by Cathryn John. CBC Books. 2020.     (Canada)
"A sweet and moving picture book depicting Ari's gender journey from childhood to adolescence in order to discover who they really are.
  Meet Ari, a young person who doesn't like to be called by their birth name Edward: 'When I think of the name Edward, I imagine old kings who snore a lot.' Throughout this beautiful and engaging picture book, we watch Ari grow up before our very eyes as they navigate the ins and outs of their gender identity; we see how, as a child, they prefer dolls and princess movies, and want to grow out their hair, though their father insists on cutting it short, "because that''s what boys look like." At nine, they play hockey but wish they could try on their mother''s dresses; at fifteen, they shave their face, hoping to have smooth skin like the girls. At sixteen, they want to run away, especially from their father, who insists, 'You're a boy, so you have to act like one.' Who will Ari become?
  Moving from age six to adolescence, The Name I Call Myself touchingly depicts Edward's tender, solitary gender journey to Ari: a new life distinguished and made meaningful by self-acceptance and unconditional love."

 

Neither
By Airlie Anderson. 2018
“In this colorful and touching story that celebrates what makes each of us unique, a little creature that’s not quite a bird and not quite a bunny–it’s “neither”–searches for a place to fit in.
In the Land of This and That, there are only two kinds: blue bunnies and yellow birds. But one day a funny green egg hatches, and a little creature that’s not quite a bird and not quite a bunny pops out. It’s neither!
Neither tries hard to fit in, but its bird legs aren’t good for jumping like the other bunnies, and its fluffy tail isn’t good for flapping like the other birds. It sets out to find a new home and discovers a very different place, one with endless colors and shapes and creatures of all kinds. But when a blue bunny and a yellow bird with some hidden differences of their own arrive, it’s up to Neither to decide if they are welcome in the Land of All. This colorful, simple, and touching story promotes diversity and offers a valuable lesson to the youngest of audiences: it is our differences that unite us.”

 

Nonnie talks about gender
By Dr Mary Jo Podgurski. 2014
“Do today’s children have questions about gender? Of course! Nonnie Talks about Gender seeks to open the door to parent/child communication by addressing potentially complicated and controversial issues with sensitivity and warmth. Alice Burroughs’ lovely illustrations form the backdrop for the story of two best friend, Alex and Tamika, as their many questions about gender are answered by Alex’s grandma, Nonnie. Gender, gender roles, and gender identity are explored while reinforcing the need for respect and empathy while dealing with difference. The book is interactive. It is divided into brief chapters that allow readers to pause and consider each lesson. A parent/teacher/trusted adult guide, glossary and resources are included.“

 

​​One of a kind, like me / Único como yo

By Laurin Mayeno.  (English and Spanish Edition) 2016.

"Tomorrow is the school parade, and Danny knows exactly what he will be: a princess. Mommy supports him 100%, and they race to the thrift store to find his costume. It's almost closing time - will Danny find the costume of his dreams in time? One of A Kind, Like Me / Único como yo is a sweet story about unconditional love and the beauty of individuality. It's a unique book that lifts up children who don't fit gender stereotypes, and reflects the power of a loving and supportive community."

Peanut goes for the gold

By Jonathan Van Ness.  Mar 2020.   (US)

"Jonathan Van Ness, the star of Netflix’s hit show Queer Eye, brings his signature humor and positivity to his empowering first picture book, inspiring readers of all ages to love being exactly who they are.

  Peanut Goes for the Gold is a charming, funny, and heartfelt picture book that follows the adventures of Peanut, a gender nonbinary guinea pig who does everything with their own personal flare.

  Peanut just has their own unique way of doing things. Whether it’s cartwheeling during basketball practice or cutting their own hair, this little guinea pig puts their own special twist on life. So when Peanut decides to be a rhythmic gymnast, they come up with a routine that they know is absolutely perfect, because it is absolutely, one hundred percent Peanut.  

  This upbeat and hilarious picture book, inspired by Jonathan’s own childhood guinea pig, encourages children to not just be themselves—but to boldly and unapologetically love being themselves.

  Jonathan Van Ness brings his signature message of warmth, positivity, and self-love to this boldly original picture book that celebrates the joys of being true to yourself and the magic that comes from following your dreams."

Perfectly Bella

By Camilla Gisslow. Mar 2021. Sweden. Ages 3-9.

“How does it feel to be a girl when you have a penis? And how does Bella want others to treat her?

Series of 3 books by Camilla Gisslow:

"Meet Linus, Bella and Charlie. Three kids with different identities here to tell us how they want to look on the outside and how we can embrace them for who they are on the inside. Join them as they celebrate their chosen new names with a name-party at school. In these special books, the families are as diverse as the children. Linus has a mom and dad. Bella's family is Muslim. Charlie has two moms. Whether a parent teacher or relative, we all want our children to be happy and shine. We must let those we love be perfectly themselves.

Click to see INTERVIEW.

Perfectly Charlie

By Camilla Gisslow. Mar 2021. Sweden. Ages 3-9.

“How does it feel to be both a girl and a boy? And how does Charlie want others to treat them?”

Series of 3 books by Camilla Gisslow:  Meet Linus, Bella and Charlie. Three kids with different identities here to tell us how they want to look on the outside and how we can embrace them for who they are on the inside. Join them as they celebrate their chosen new names with a name-party at school. In these special books, the families are as diverse as the children. Linus has a mom and dad. Bella's family is Muslim. Charlie has two moms. Whether a parent teacher or relative, we all want our children to be happy and shine. We must let those we love be perfectly themselves."

Click to see INTERVIEW.

Perfectly Linus

By Camilla Gisslow. Mar 2021. Sweden. Ages 3-9. Series of 3 books.

How does it feel to be a boy when you have a vagina? And how does Linus want others to treat him?

Meet Linus, Bella and Charlie. Three kids with different identities here to tell us how they want to look on the outside and how we can embrace them for who they are on the inside. Join them as they celebrate their chosen new names with a name-party at school. In these special books, the families are as diverse as the children. Linus has a mom and dad. Bella's family is Muslim. Charlie has two moms. Whether a parent teacher or relative, we all want our children to be happy and shine. We must let those we love be perfectly themselves."

Click to see INTERVIEW.
 

Phoenix goes to school: A story to support transgender and gender diverse children
by Michelle Finch. July 2018. (US)
“Phoenix wants to wear her favourite purple dress to express her gender, but she is scared of being bullied on her first day of school. Follow Phoenix’s journey as she arrives at school, makes some friends, stands up for herself, and helps us learn to be true to who we really are.”

The pink balloon: A book about your gender identity and shining as your true self

By Cynthia Sweeny and BriAnna Simons. Sep 2021.   (Nova Scotia, Canada)

"Somewhere near the seaside, a child named Briar is about to be born. But, Briar's story has already begun when a pink balloon floats surprisingly out of a box. Inspired by a true story, this is a heartwarming journey of a new family, a balloon, and a child who shows the world it is what’s on the inside that counts the most.  An inclusive storybook for children 4 to 8 years old."

Pink is for boys

By Robb Pearlman. 2018
An empowering and educational picture book that proves colors are for everyone, regardless of gender.
Pink is for boys . . . and girls . . . and everyone! This timely and beautiful picture book rethinks and reframes the stereotypical blue/pink gender binary and empowers kids-and their grown-ups-to express themselves in every color of the rainbow. Featuring a diverse group of relatable characters, Pink Is for Boys invites and encourages (children) to enjoy what they love to do, whether it’s racing cars and playing baseball, or loving unicorns and dressing up. Vibrant illustrations help children learn and identify the myriad colors that surround them every day, from the orange of a popsicle, to the green of a grassy field, all the way up to the wonder of a multicolored rainbow. Parents and kids will delight in Robb Pearlman’s sweet, simple script, as well as its powerful message: life is not color-coded.”

 

Porcupine cupid
By Jason June. 2020
“What I love most about this book is that—even with animal characters—we were able to make this book queer-inclusive and a Valentine’s Day story for all”

Selected reviewer comments:
“Gender neutral pronouns/names? Pride flags in the background? Subtle queer hints all around? Love.”
“This is a super cute book and my 2yo son absolutely loved it. I love the under-the-radar queer content within the illustrations and the fact that each animal is gender neutral in their dialogue tags…it’s a nice change of pace from the other picture books out there. The story is cute and the exclamations make it a fun and interactive out-loud read. “
“I have tagged this as having queer content and trans content. I actually only stopped to read this book because flipping through it I glimpsed a bear wearing a scarf in the colours of the trans flag. There is also a rabbit doing yoga on a genderqueer flag-coloured mat. Highly recommended for anyone, really. It is a particularly good option for the bookshelves of queer and trans parents of young children, and for storytimes and class reads for ages 3 to 7 around Valentine’s Day. It offers a chance to add commentary when pointing at the pictures – 'Look, she’s giving her a hug and now they are walking away holding hands!' – or not, depending on your comfort level.“

Red: A crayon’s story
By Michael Hall. 2015. (US)
“A blue crayon mistakenly labeled as “red” suffers an identity crisis in this picture book by the New York Times–bestselling creator of My Heart Is Like a Zoo and It’s an Orange Aardvark! Funny, insightful, and colorful, Red: A Crayon’s Story, by Michael Hall, is about being true to your inner self and following your own path despite obstacles that may come your way. Red will appeal to fans of Lois Ehlert, Eric Carle, and The Day the Crayons Quit, and makes a great gift for readers of any age!
Red has a bright red label, but he is, in fact, blue. His teacher tries to help him be red (let’s draw strawberries!), his mother tries to help him be red by sending him out on a playdate with a yellow classmate (go draw a nice orange!), and the scissors try to help him be red by snipping his label so that he has room to breathe. But Red is miserable. He just can’t be red, no matter how hard he tries! Finally, a brand-new friend offers a brand-new perspective, and Red discovers what readers have known all along. He’s blue! This funny, heartwarming, colorful picture book about finding the courage to be true to your inner self can be read on multiple levels, and it offers something for everyone.“

 

Rick
By Alex Gino. 2020
"From the award-winning author of George, the story of a boy named Rick who needs to explore his own identity apart from his jerk of a best friend.
Rick’s never questioned much. He's gone along with his best friend Jeff even when Jeff's acted like a bully and a jerk. He’s let his father joke with him about which hot girls he might want to date even though that kind of talk always makes him uncomfortable. And he hasn’t given his own identity much thought, because everyone else around him seemed to have figured it out. But now Rick’s gotten to middle school, and new doors are opening. One of them leads to the school’s Rainbow Spectrum club, where kids of many genders and identities congregate, including Melissa, the girl who sits in front of Rick in class and seems to have her life together. Rick wants his own life to be that . . . understood. Even if it means breaking some old friendships and making some new ones .As they did in their groundbreaking novel GEORGE, in RICK, award-winning author Alex Gino explores what it means to search for your own place in the world . . . and all the steps you and the people around you need to take in order to get where you need to be.

Sex is a funny word: A book about bodies, feelings, and YOU

By Cory Silverberg. 2015.  (Canadian)

2016 Winner of the Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction 
2016 ALA Stonewall Book Award, Honor Book
2016 ALA Notable Children's Book

"A comic book for kids that includes children and families of all makeups, orientations, and gender identities, Sex Is a Funny Word is an essential resource about bodies, gender, and sexuality for children ages 8 to 10 as well as their parents and caregivers. Much more than the 'facts of life' or 'the birds and the bees', Sex Is a Funny Word opens up conversations between young people and their caregivers in a way that allows adults to convey their values and beliefs while providing information about boundaries, safety, and joy.
     The eagerly anticipated follow up to Lambda-nominated What Makes a Baby, from sex educator Cory Silverberg and artist Fiona Smyth, Sex Is a Funny Word reimagines 'sex talk' for the twenty-first century."

​Cory Silverberg is a Canadian sex educator, author, public speaker, blogger and founding member of Come As You Are. Silverberg is Jewish, and grew up in a "middle class liberal Canadian home in the '70s.

She's my dad! A story for children who have a transgender parent or relative

By Sarah Savage. Aug 2020.   (UK)

"My dad's name is Haley. She used to be a he but now she is a she! Last year she did this thing called transition. She grew her hair long, painted her nails in bright colours and started wearing different clothes.''
  "When Mini's cousin accidentally misgenders her dad Haley, Mini explains why misgendering is hurtful and why we need to treat trans people with respect. Mini speaks with confidence about transitioning and gender identity, and helps to educate and empower others with trans relatives or friends.
  This brightly illustrated book for children aged 3 - 7 will aid discussion with children about a loved one transitioning or about trans people in general. Featuring a child with a dad who has transitioned, this book passes on an important message about acceptance and respect, and covers pronouns, dysphoria, family diversity and misgendering."

    Sarah Savage is a trans-rights campaigner and co-founder of Trans Pride Brighton. She is the co-author of Are You A Boy Or Are You A Girl? and She's My Mom! and lives in Brighton with her family.

Sparkle boy
By Leslea Newman. 2017
“Three-year-old Casey wants what his older sister, Jessie, has–a shimmery skirt, glittery painted nails, and a sparkly bracelet–but Jessie does not approve. After two boys tease Casey about his appearance, Jessie evolves to a place of acceptance and celebration of her gender creative younger brother.“

 

They, she, he easy as ABC
By Maya Christina Gonzalez. 2020
“Inclusive pronouns are learned alongside the alphabet in this joyously illustrated take on the classic ABC book.
They, She, He easy as ABC shows that including everyone is all part of the dance. It’s easy. It’s fundamental. As the dance begins the kids proclaim, “No one left out and everyone free,” in a sing-song rhyme about inclusion. This sets the stage for readers to meet 26 kids showing us their dance moves.
        Ari loves to arabesque.

        They hold their pose with ease.
      Brody is a break dancer.

        Brody loves to freeze.
  Fast-paced rhyming keeps the flow of text upbeat and rhythmic, and naturally models how to use a wide range of pronouns. There’s no room for stereotypes on THIS dance floor with spirited imagery that keeps names, clothes, hair and behavior fresh and diverse. The combination creates a playful and effortless practice to expand ideas about gender while learning the alphabet and makes being inclusive as easy as A-B-C.
  This book continues the work started in They She He Me: Free to Be!, also by Maya & Matthew, and what School Library Journal called 'a gorgeous and much-needed picture book about pronouns and gender fluidity.' Both books provide a way to build on gender inclusive practices, and help interrupt the formalization of gender stereotypes and assumptions.“

 

They she he me: Free to be!
By Maya Christina Gonzalez. 2017
“How do you daily confirm and celebrate gender fluidity when the ‘he’ and ‘she’ binary is so prevalent in EVERYTHING, everywhere, all the time!?
Pronouns serve as a familiar starting point for kids and grown-ups to expand ideas about gender and celebrate personal expression with fun imagery that provides a place to meet and play.
Award winning children’s book author and artist Maya Gonzalez is joined by her partner, Matthew, in their first children’s book together.
With virtually no reflection for different gender presentations in children’s books available, together they created a book to do just that. They She He Me, Free to Be shows many gender presentations under each pronoun and invites even more. A go-to place to help keep the conversations alive, break down assumptions of who is “she” or “he” and expand beyond the binary to include “they” and more.
The back offers a playful narrative about pronouns, inviting kids to know themselves inside and out, claim the pronouns that express the spirit of who they are and respect that in others. Also included is some discussion for grown-ups on how to hold a supportive space for kids (and for themselves).
This book stands on its own, but it also serves as a great reference to expand gender in other books and media.“

Too Bright to See 

By Kyle Lukoff. Apr 2021.   (US)

"It's the summer before middle school and eleven-year-old Bug's best friend Moira has decided the two of them need to use the next few months to prepare. For Moira, this means figuring out the right clothes to wear, learning how to put on makeup, and deciding which boys are cuter in their yearbook photos than in real life. But none of this is all that appealing to Bug, who doesn't particularly want to spend more time trying to understand how to be a girl. Besides, there's something more important to worry about: A ghost is haunting Bug's eerie old house in rural Vermont...and maybe haunting Bug in particular. As Bug begins to untangle the mystery of who this ghost is and what they're trying to say, an altogether different truth comes to light--Bug is transgender."

A Newbery Honor Book /  Winner of the Stonewall Book Award  /  A National Book Award Finalist.
A gentle, glowing wonder, full of love and understanding." –The New York Times Book Review  "

Trans pride: A coloring book

By Fox Fisher. May 2021.

"Trans rights are human rights!
  This fun and beautifully illustrated coloring book is perfect for inspiring children aged 5+ to explore their creative expression and learn about the beauty and diversity of trans lives. With over 100 pages of positive transgender and non-binary representation, the book includes illustrations of key figures in trans history, gender flags, key terms, empowering statements, awareness days and humorous drawings of tigers, seahorses, bunnies and so much more!
  Designed by award-winning campaigner and artist, Fox Fisher, this book is a celebration of gender diversity and fluidity and will empower all children to be true to themselves, stand up for trans rights and let their imagination run wild!
  What you will find inside this book:
  · Black and white designs
  · Child-friendly with bold, age-appropriate pictures
  · Suitable for children aged 5+
  · Designs in various skill levels
  · A nice large format easy for children to use"

What are your words? A book of pronouns

By Katherine Locke. Picture book. May 2021.   (US)

"Follow Ari through their neighborhood as they try to find their words in this sweet, accessible introduction to gender-inclusive pronouns that is perfect for readers of all ages.

   Whenever Ari's Uncle Lior comes to visit, they ask Ari one question: 'What are your words?' Some days Ari uses she/her. Other days Ari uses he/him. But on the day of the neighborhood's big summer bash, Ari doesn't know what words to use. On the way to the party, Ari and Lior meet lots of neighbors and learn the words each of them use to describe themselves, including pronouns like she/her, he/him, they/them, ey/em, and ze/zir. As Ari tries on different pronouns, they discover that it's okay to not know your words right away—sometimes you have to wait for your words to find you.

    Filled with bright, graphic illustrations, this simple and poignant story about finding yourself is the perfect introduction to gender-inclusive pronouns for readers of all ages."

What Riley wore
By Elana K. Arnold. 2019
“Gender-creative Riley knows just what to wear for every occasion during a busy week with family and friends in this sweet and timely picture book from Elana K. Arnold and Linda Davick. Riley wears whatever clothes feel right each day. On Monday, Riley feels shy and wears a bunny costume to school. On Tuesday, a scary trip to the dentist calls for a super hero cape. For a trip out with Otto and Oma, a ball gown is the perfect outfit. This charming picture book is a gentle exploration of self-expression and source of encouragement for being true to oneself despite the expectations of others.”

When Aidan became a brother
By Kyle Lukoff. 2019
“When Aidan was born, everyone thought he was a girl. His parents gave him a pretty name, his room looked like a girl’s room, and he wore clothes that other girls liked wearing. After he realized he was a trans boy, Aidan and his parents fixed the parts of life that didn’t fit anymore, and he settled happily into his new life. Then Mom and Dad announce that they’re going to have another baby, and Aidan wants to do everything he can to make things right for his new sibling from the beginning—from choosing the perfect name to creating a beautiful room to picking out the cutest onesie. But what does 'making things right' actually mean? And what happens if he messes up? With a little help, Aidan comes to understand that mistakes can be fixed with honesty and communication, and that he already knows the most important thing about being a big brother: how to love with his whole self.

    When Aidan Became a Brother is a heartwarming book that will resonate with transgender children, reassure any child concerned about becoming an older sibling, and celebrate the many transitions a family can experience.”
 

Who are you? The kid’s guide to gender

By Brook Pessin-Whedbee. 2016
     What do you like?
     How do you feel?
     Who are you?

This brightly illustrated children’s book provides a straightforward introduction to gender for anyone aged four and up. It presents clear and direct language for understanding and talking about how we experience gender: our bodies, our expression, and our identity. An interactive three-layered wheel included in the book is a simple, yet powerful, tool to clearly demonstrate the difference between our body, how we express ourselves through our clothes and hobbies, and our gender identity. Ideal for use in the classroom or at home, a short page-by-page guide for adults at the back of the book further explains the key concepts and identifies useful discussion points. This is a one-of-a-kind resource for understanding and celebrating the gender diversity that surrounds us.”

 

The witch boy

By Molly Knox Ostertag. 2017.

“From the illustrator of the web comic Strong Female Protagonist comes a debut middle-grade graphic novel about family, identity, courage -- and magic.

In thirteen-year-old Aster's family, all the girls are raised to be witches, while boys grow up to be shapeshifters. Anyone who dares cross those lines is exiled. Unfortunately for Aster, he still hasn't shifted . . . and he's still fascinated by witchery, no matter how forbidden it might be. When a mysterious danger threatens the other boys, Aster knows he can help -- as a witch. It will take the encouragement of a new friend, the non-magical and non-conforming Charlie, to convince Aster to try practicing his skills. And it will require even more courage to save his family . . . and be truly himself.”

Worm loves worm
By J.J. Austrian. 2016
"You are cordially invited to celebrate the wedding of a worm…and a worm.
When a worm meets a special worm and they fall in love, you know what happens next: They get married! But their friends want to know—who will wear the dress? And who will wear the tux?
The answer is: It doesn’t matter. Because worm loves worm."

One of Time Out’s 'LGBTQ+ books for kids to read during Pride Month,' this irresistible picture book is a celebration of love in all its splendid forms from debut author J. J. Austrian.

You be you! The kid’s guide to gender, sexuality and family
By Jonathan Branfman. 2019. Ages 7-11.
“This is an illustrated children’s book for ages 7-11 that makes gender identity, sexual orientation and family diversity easy to explain to children. Throughout the book kids learn that there are many kinds of people in the world and that diversity is something to be celebrated. It covers gender, romantic orientation, discrimination, intersectionality, privilege, and how to stand up for what’s right. With charming illustrations, clear explanations, and short sections that can be dipped in and out of, this book helps children think about how to create a kinder, more tolerant world.” Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards Gold Medal Winner

 

You’re here for a reason
By Nancy Tillman. 2017
“Not only are we loved, but we also matter. In this tender and timeless read-along book, Tillman reminds us of this message in beautiful illustrations as children and animals interact with acts of kindness.”
   You’re here for a reason. If you think you’re not
  I would just say that perhaps you forgot . . .
  a piece of the world that is precious and dear would surely be missing

   if you weren’t  here.
  If not for your smile and your laugh and your heart
  this place we call home would be minus a part.
  Thank goodness you’re here!
  Thank goodness times two!
  I just can’t imagine a world without you

 

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