In my opinion, books are the best accessory.
George by Alex Gino – Realistic Fiction – Release Date: August 25th: THIS THIS THIS is THE book that SHOULD be in LIBRARIES all over to help people understand about transgender children. How they think. What they feel. What they need. How they dream. How they think of themselves. Wow. Wow. WOW. I found this book quite the powerful one. George knows she is a girl but she’s afraid to tell anyone. What will her mom say? Her brother? Classmates? Best friend? Taking the risk to explain how she feels inside is a tough one but with a school play as a route, she thinks she might be able to tell her mom visually. Will her mom believe and understand how she feels? Beautiful. Beautiful. Beautiful. I feel like this book will save lives. Will lend to children gaining more empathy for others… Highly recommended.
Goodreads Summary: “BE WHO YOU ARE.
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.”
I am compelled to share other books that I believe also address this topic in a similar vein. I’ve shared and reviewed them before and found them to be so important. I feel like having conversations with children and including books that help the discussion is quite powerful.
I recently read an article in the School Library Journal about the need for quality transgender books. This quote stood out: “Children deserve books that are well done, not just well intentioned.” http://www.slj.com/2015/05/diversity/evaluating-transgender-picture-books-requesting-better-ones/
I feel like there aren’t enough picture books available, novels are being released and they are brilliant- like the ones shared on this post- but picture books? It would be good to have beautiful books that aren’t just written around an issue. I found a list on Goodreads that fascinated me: Transgender Friendly books.
Two books I’ve read popped up on the list, I think both are pretty powerful:
This is a novel- pretty special story because it isn’t just an issue book, it is a humorous, realistic fiction book too. The Boy in the Dress by David Walliams. My review from a few years ago: The Boy in the Dress by David Walliams, illustrated by Quentin Blake – Realistic Fiction, 4th grade and up – Ok, there is a boy in a dress. And in certain communities, there might be some issues having this book in your library collection. Now that I’ve stated this, WOW. This is a hilarious, touching book about a boy who finds that dressing up is fun and fashion is fascinating. When he makes a friend who has the same passion, trouble begins. Really enjoyed the twists and turns of this book and know it will open the mind of boys and girls about gender roles and tolerance. I chose to read this to my son (he received the book as a gift) and was quite pleased with the discussions we had during the book. I loved reading a book that had ups, downs, comedy and drama combined. I know many will love this!
Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress is a powerful story, good picture book to share, my review: Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress by Christine Baldacchino, pictures by Isabelle Malenfant – THIS BOOK SHOULD BE ADDED TO YOUR SELECTIONS if you want to provide an opportunity for diversity discussion… I’d partner it with the novel The Boy in the Dress by David Walliams. Good story about a boy who loved to dress up in this tangerine dress and dealt with his classmates ridicule… loved the mom in this story.
I was sad to see that Gracefully Grayson wasn’t included on this list. It is one of my favorite novels… Here’s my past review of Gracefully Grayson: Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky – Absolutely loved this book, Book release date: November 4th, 2014. (Happy book birthday!) This book should be in all school libraries. It develops empathy in an unexpected, beautiful way. I’ve appreciated transgender books before but the touching, thoughtful way Grayson, main character, experiences his life is incredible. I cannot imagine going around in a fog feeling half there, hidden, unable to trust others and just be myself but reading this book really put me there. I loved the teachers in this book, the librarian, the story of loss and simultaneously the story of growth and hope. Absolutely touching, beautiful book. Really, should be in every school library. It will help others understand how their actions impact others…Favorite quotes: “Take important action despite fear.”
“Well, I think to be brave, you have to be scared at the same time. To be brave means there’s something important you have to do and you’re scared, but you do it anyway.”
Finally, I find it quite fascinating that the shopping store Target is now removing gender based signs in the kids sections of their store. Gender stereotyping addressed and action taken…
About Pull up a chair, it’s a Saturday Book Share: I’ve had many books I review that I just want to feature. Simple and easy, celebrate a new book encounter. So that’s what Saturday Book Share is about for me, celebrating books! Perhaps some days I’ll share the book with a short reading of a portion. Or perhaps other days I’ll just share a glimpse of the book.
Want more book ideas and reviews? – Yes, I’m quite brief, but a prolific reader! Please visit me at Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/1941055-the-styling-librarian Also, please follow this blog through email updates – (do so to the right of this blog post), my Facebook page, comment, or meet up with me on Twitter. I appreciate all of the support, makes my day! Honored by all the wonderful followers.
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© 2013 by Debbie Alvarez of The Styling Librarian. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @stylinlibrarian or at my Styling Librarian Page on Facebook.