Nearly a year ago now, I posted a book list called “LGBT Picture Books for Kids (That Adults Also Enjoy).”
There were several reasons I created the list:
- MidMO PrideFest was coming up in Columbia
- The youth services team didn’t yet have a list that dealt with LGBT+ picture books
- June is when we remember the Stonewall Riots
- I fell in love with the “Red” book by Michael Hall
- So many reasons!
What I did not expect was the love that poured out from everywhere!
When I first started the LGBT picture book list, I had around 30 books. I asked some staff members, brought in a few of my favorites, read some reviews and did solid amount of research for my list. As of right now, that original list has tripled in size, and it is still growing as we add titles that we receive from our Facebook page, purchase requests, teacher requests and more! My inbox has been flooded with wonderful books recommended by community members. As I get them and read them, I have been adding to this list.
So, one year later, I want to send out a big thank you to everyone who built this list with me!
I also want to showcase some of the new titles I’ve received that I absolutely loved and hope will continue to entertain young readers in our community.
“Maiden & Princess” written by Daniel Haack, illustrated by Becca Human
The kingdom is holding a ball for the crown prince to find a bride. The villagers are thrilled and begin planning immediately. However, one maiden isn’t as excited. She sees the prince as her brother, someone she has fought alongside. The other villagers see this as her opportunity to become his bride. She goes to the ball, hoping to enjoy herself, but finds others pressuring her to dance with the prince. The young maiden escapes and finds herself being comforted by the kingdom’s princess.
“Ho’onani: Hula Warrior” written by Heather Gale, illustrated by Mika Song
Ho’onani does not identify as wahine (girl) or (kāne) boy. She feels happy in the middle, as in-between. However, when Ho’onani joins an all-male troupe of hula dancers, she experiences pushback from her sister, Kana. Ho’onani must realize that even those who love us are not always understanding, but we must overcome that to be our true selves.
“They Call Me Mix” written by Lourdes Rivas, illustrated by Breena Nunez
Lourdes is a non-binary individual that wrote about their experience growing up. They were confused at first, unable to communicate why they did not feel like a boy or girl. It took time and a little bit of personal struggle, but they were able to express their feelings to their family and grow. Now, Lourdes is a teacher for kindergartners!
“The Girls” written by Lauren Ace, illustrated by Lenny Lovlie
“The Girls” is a personal favorite of mine; it follows the story of four friends growing up together. They meet, they establish their secret place and build their relationships. The story develops over several years of their lives. Together, the girls grow and support one another through their victories and losses in life, some of them finding life partners, earning degrees, getting married, having kids, going on adventures, etc. Each individual holds different things as important in their life, but still supports their friends.