Happy Pride Month, Colorful Pages Community! Every June, Pride Month is celebrated as a tribute to those who advocated for the LGBTQIA+ community in the Stonewall Riots. There are countless celebrations worldwide, including many in my own backyard of Seattle. 

To join in on the celebrations and continue to advocate for social justice, I put together a Colorful Pages Happy Pride Month Book List. This book list contains 10 diverse picture books that families, educators, and librarians can use to recognize Pride Month, be inclusive of the LGBTQIA+ community, and have conversations about social justice issues in support of the LGBTQIA+ community. Over half of our list includes books written by authors of color! 

It is important that we recognize the intersectionality that comes with identifying as a person of color and LGBTQIA+. The following books can help your kiddos continue to build their acceptance and allyship! 

Born Ready: The True Story of a Boy Named Penelope, by Jodie Patterson

Age Range: 4-8 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Representation

Born Ready is a beautiful true story of Jodie Patterson’s transgender son. The picture book is about a little boy who was born and given the name Penelope. He loves ninjas and, using his special ninja powers, he tells his parents that he is a boy. The next pages share how P opens up his true identity to everyone in his life. I love this story because of the theme of acceptance shown from every community member!

My Rainbow, by DeShanna Neal and Trinity Neal

Age Range: 4-8 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Representation

In this picture book, Deshanna and Trinity Neal share a true experience of how a mother created a rainbow wig for her transgender daughter. Trinity, the daughter, is frustrated one day and tells her mom that she needs long hair. At first, the mother tells Trinity that no one needs long hair to be a woman, but Trinity advocates for herself and explains how her situation is different because she is transgender (ahhh I LOVE the self-advocacy and explicit intersectionality representation). The mother realizes Trinity’s need and makes Trinity her own gorgeous long-haired rainbow wig!

My Footprints, by Bao Phi

Age Range: 6-8 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Conversation

Bao Phi writes the story of Thuy who feels different because she is Vietnamese-American and has two moms. Thuy is frustrated because she is teased by a bully at school about her identities. However, after taking a walk outside and observing different animals, Thuy finds her strength and the strength of her family to stand up for their beautiful identities. The illustrations in this book are soft but powerful. I also love how My Footprints integrates animals from cultural mythology! 

Large Fears, by Myles E Johnson

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Conversation

Large Fears

Large Fears is one of the first picture books that I have seen that features a Black LGBTQ+ character- SO EXCITING! Johnson writes about a boy named Jeremiah Nebula, a black boy who loves pink and wants to travel to Mars. The book is about his quest for acceptance as a Black boy who he sees as “different” than other Black boys. 

Little People, Big Dreams: RuPaul, by Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara

Age Range: 4-7 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Mostly Representation

GreenLight status awarded. Checklist Jackets (Final) ran on Thursday 10 December 2020 at 12:36

Little People, Big Dreams: RuPaul is the picture book biography of RuPaul from the Little People, Big Dreams series. It shares about RuPaul’s childhood all the way to his success as an adult. This biography is very child-friendly since it is shorter and has engaging illustrations. Every reader will enjoy reading about the confident RuPaul, the shape-shifter, performer, supermodel, and host of RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Sharice’s Big Voice: A Native Kid Becomes a Congresswoman, by Sharice Davids with Nancy K. Mays

Age Range: 4-8 years

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Conversation

US Congresswoman Sharice Davids wrote this book about her journey called, Sharice’s Big Voice. It shares about her pathway to congress as one of the first Native American women elected to Congress and the first LGBTQ congressperson to represent Kansas. Her picture book celebrates that every voice should be heard! Check out her mini-video about her book: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j1q9xeP1Iro

Julián is a Mermaid, by Jessica Love

Age Range: 4-8 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Between Representation & Exploration

This picture book is about Julián who sees three beautiful women dressed up as mermaids and then wants to dress up too. However, Julián is not sure what his Abuela will think. This book is great for talking about affirming the different identities of people. I also love the illustrations in this picture book; they are so mesmerizing that you could hang them up as artwork around your house. 

When We Love Someone We Sing to Them: Cuando Amamos Cantamos, by Ernesto Javier Martínez

Age Range: 7-10 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Exploration

When We Love Someone We Sing to Them is a bilingual picture book about a young boy who asks his papi if there is a song about a boy who loves a boy. The book shows how the Mexican serenata tradition can be expanded to be more inclusive of the LGBTQIA+ community. I will be adding this to my read aloud selection for next school year because of the emphasis of culture and inclusivity as well as the implicit exploration of intersectionality! 

They, She, He, Easy as ABC, by Maya Christina Gonzales

Age Range: 3-7 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Between Representation & Exploration

They, She He, Easy as ABC explores the different types of pronouns and shows readers how easy they are to use. It is an ABC book that has a child’s name for every letter and uses their preferred pronouns. You could use this book to explore the different pronouns and have students share their preferred pronouns (make sure you have created an identity safe and brave space before attempting this). 

From the stars in the sky to the fish in the sea, by Kai Cheng Thom

Age Range: 3-8 years old

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit.: Representation

This dreamy picture book explores gender, identity, and acceptance. It is about Miu Lan and how they were born during the time between night and day so they couldn’t decide what to be. Yet, their mother loved them all the same and sang them a song, “whatever you dream of, I believe you can be”. However, when Miu Lan went to school, they got worried because everyone else was either a boy or a girl and they had a hard time finding friends. At the end, Miu Lan shows their classmates the beauty in their identity and acceptance. From the stars in the sky to the fish in the sea would be a perfect book to talk about acceptance and not forcing people to choose a certain identity. 

4 thoughts on “Happy Pride Month: 10 Diverse Picture Books

  1. Thank you for this list. I appreciate the curation, the book descriptions, and the teaching ideas. I’ve seen several lists for Pride month, but this list shines.

    Jean Bolivar Echo Lake Librarian Library Website

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    Liked by 1 person

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