I am currently working on a blog post about some of my favorite LGBTQ-themed children’s books, and hope to post it soon. But in the meantime, I decided to compile a collection of book lists and resources out there for folks searching for books featuring LGBTQ families and/or LGBTQ protagonists.
This is a strong list–and includes some of my old favorites like “The House You Pass Along the Way” by Jacqueline Woodson and “The Color Purple” by Alice Walker, as well others that I enjoyed like “What Night Brings” by Carla Trujillo, and “I am J” by Chris Beam.
In this post S. Bear Bergman discusses their press Flamingo Rampant: “We make books that often provide the first time a kid has ever seen their family or their experience positively represented. It’s queer families, trans kids, kids of color, Muslim kids, two-spirit kids. If you go to our website, you’ll see our mission statement, and it’s really about the right of children to be represented lovingly.” They also point out that the idea of age-appropriate is really about privilege and the idea of children as innocent and in need of protection. Brown and black kids, queer kids and queer spawn often don’t have the luxury of innocence.
Why Trans Themes Matter: In this post Kelly Caldwell, a trans parent, reviews I am Jazz, Red: A Crayon’s Story, and Jacob’s Dress, and discusses how these picture books have provided a way for her to talk about being trans with her 4 year old son. Her post also provides insight into her own experiences as a parent in transition and the conversations she has about gender with her kid who is trying to figure out how gender works in the world around him.
Book Reviews from Transkids.biz: This is a pretty comprehensive list of books that have trans or gender-nonconforming characters. It offers a short synopsis and a quick review of the text from the perspective of the Trans Kids Biz folks. They share many of my own feelings about which books shine, which books are useful but limited in the narrative that they provide, and which books are not particularly good.
Strong Girls and Sensitive Boys: This post is a bit older, from 2015, but is a useful list because it has a very broad definition of gender diversity. It includes a range of characters and situations with boys and girls and children and parents engaging in different activities. It includes some of the standard books that other lists include with GNC or trans characters, but also includes several books that I haven’t seen elsewhere!
The Rainbow Book List. “The List is a curated bibliography highlighting books with significant gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer/questioning content, aimed at children and youth from birth to age 18.” There is a list for each year from 2008 till the present and the 2019 Rainbow Book list includes over 107 titles!
And in case all of those above lists/links are not enough, here are some lists of more lists! The Multicultural Children’s Book Day LGBT Book Lists has a bunch of different links to additional posts about LGBTQ books. This site also has resources related to race, geographic region, and more aspects of identity and multiculturalism. And finally, We Need Diverse Books, is a page of book lists not only related to LGBTQ identities, but also race, ability, and more!