By KRISTEN THOMPSON
It’s PRIDE in the Okanagan! So, we have a question for you: How do you talk to your kids about LGBT2Q+ issues? A bit stumped? Luckily, we have an amazing resource that’s free for all of us to use: The Okanagan Regional Library. (*for our page on kids’ library programs head here!*)
Our local libraries are full of amazing books that address transgender and intersex issues, as well as gender non-conformity and sexual orientation. These are great ways to start a conversation with kids about what it means to celebrate everyone, regardless of the clothes they wear, the toys they play with, the length of their hair, and the people they love.
Read on for the mini DoTheOkanaganites’ eight favourite books for Pride, all of which are available at your local Okanagan Regional Library:
I Love My Purse
By Belle Demont
Charlie loves the red purse his grandmother gave him. But when he decides to take it to school, everyone seems to questions him about it. After all, boys don’t carry purses. Before long, his self confidence starts to affect those around him, and they realize it isn’t always necessary to conform to societal norms. It’s more important to be true to yourself.
Julian is a Mermaid
By Jessica Love
While riding the subway with his abuela one day, Julián notices three women spectacularly dressed up like mermaids. Julián returns home and dreams about is dressing up in his own fabulous mermaid costume. But what will Abuela think? Beautifully illustrated and full of heart, this story is a jubilant tale of self-love, and a celebration of individuality.
Worm Loves Worm
By J.J. Austrian
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. This sweet picture book is a celebration of love in all its splendid forms.
Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress
By Christine Baldacchino
Morris is a little boy who loves his classroom’s dress-up centre — especially the tangerine dress. But his classmates don’t understand. Dresses, they say, are for girls. With warm, dreamy illustrations, this story perfectly captures one little boy’s vulnerability, and the vibrancy of his imagination. It’s a sweetly-told story about the courage and creativity it takes to be different.
I am Jazz
By Jessica Herthel
From the time she was two, Jazz knew 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 boy's clothing. This confused her family, until they learned that Jazz was transgender — and she was born that way! This heartwarming true story beautifully explains what it means to be born a girl in a boy’s body.
Red: A Crayon’s Story
By Michael Hall
Red has a red label. But, he is - in fact - blue. His teacher tries to help him be red by drawing strawberries, and his mother tries to help him be red by telling him to play with a yellow friend (so the can draw orange). But he just can't be red! Finally, Red discovers what readers have known all along: He's blue! This funny and heartwarming book is about finding the courage to be true to your inner self.
* Solla’s pick
Pink is For Boys
By Robb Pearlman
This beautiful picture book rethinks and re-frames the stereotypical blue/pink gender binary and empowers kids - and grown-ups - to express themselves in every colour of the rainbow. Pink Is for Boys invites and encourages girls and boys to enjoy what they love to do, whether it's racing cars and playing baseball, or loving unicorns and dressing up.
And Tango Makes Three
By Justin Richardson
The heartwarming true story of penguin couple Roy and Silo, who were a little bit different from the others, but still wanted a family of their own - just like everybody else. With the help of a kindly zookeeper, Roy and Silo got the chance to welcome a baby penguin of their very own, and finally become daddies!