October is LGBT+ History Month, a month when we remember the history of gay rights and related civil rights movements. Here are a bunch of non-fiction books for all ages to help celebrate this month and its importance!
By Dr. Elly Barnes MBE and Louie Stowell
Illustrated by Amy Phelps
32 Pages | Ages 3-5 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780744063172 | DK Children
A is for Acceptance! B is for Belonging! C is for Celebrate!
ABC Pride introduces young readers to the alphabet through the colorful world of Pride. Children can discover letters and words in a fun and engaging way, while also learning more about the LGBTQIA+ community and how to be inclusive. Every letter of the alphabet is paired with bold illustrations to support language learning, and a handy list of discussion points at the end gives adults the appropriate tools to spark further conversations and discussion around the topic. ABC Pride offers a simple yet powerful way to explain gender, identity, and ability to young children, while introducing and supporting diverse family units. An ideal book for little learners to explore together with a caregiver, as well as in a classroom environment.
Pride: An Inspirational History of the LGBTQ+ Movement
By Stella Caldwell
Foreword by Layton Williams
128 Pages | Ages 10+ | Hardcover
ISBN 9780593382943 | Penguin Workshop
The LGBTQ+ community is so much more than rainbow flags and the month of June. In this beautifully designed dynamic book, young readers will learn about groundbreaking events, including historic pushes for equality and the legalization of same-sex marriages across the world. They will dive into the phenomenal history of queer icons from ancient times to the present and read about Harvey Milk, Marsha P. Johnson, Audre Lorde, and more. Including several personal current essays from inspiring young, LGBTQ+ people, this book encourages readers to take pride in their identity and the identities of those around them. Don’t just learn about LGBTQ+ history – take pride in it! The lively four-color interior, including photographs and bold illustrations, enhances the text and makes this a beautiful and dynamic addition to any collection.
Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag
By Rob Sanders
Illustrated by Steven Salerno
48 Pages | Ages 5-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9780399555312 | Random House BFYR
In this deeply moving and inspiring true story, young readers will trace the life of the Gay Pride Flag: from its beginnings in 1978 with social activist Harvey Milk and designer Gilbert Baker to its spanning of the globe and its role in today’s world. Award-winning author Rob Sanders’s stirring text, and acclaimed illustrator Steven Salerno’s evocative images, combine to tell this remarkable – and undertold – story. A story of love, hope, equality, and pride.
She Persisted: Rachel Levine
By Lisa Bunker and Chelsea Clinton
Illustrated by Alexandra Boiger and Gillian Flint
96 Pages | Ages 1-4 | Paperback
ISBN 9780593529041 | Philomel Books
As the first openly transgender government official to hold an office that requires Senate confirmation, the first openly transgender four-star officer in uniform service, and the first female four-star admiral in the commissioned corps, Rachel Levine faced many obstacles throughout her life. But she persisted through them all and showed kids of all genders that they can succeed in their dreams too. In this chapter book biography by critically acclaimed author Lisa Bunker, readers learn about the amazing life of Rachel Levine – and how she persisted. Complete with an introduction from Chelsea Clinton, black-and-white illustrations throughout, and a list of ways that readers can follow in Rachel Levine’s footsteps and make a difference! A perfect choice for kids who love learning and teachers who want to bring inspiring women into their curriculum. And don’t miss out on the rest of the books in the She Persisted series, featuring so many more women who persisted, including Sonia Sotomayor, Margaret Chase Smith, Patsy Mink, and more!
‘Twas the Night Before Pride
By Joanna McClintick
Illustrated by Juana Medina
32 Pages | Ages 4-8 | Hardcover
ISBN 9781536213430 | Candlewick
This joyful picture-book homage to a day of community and inclusion – and to the joys of anticipation – is also a comprehensive history. With bright, buoyant illustrations and lyrical, age-appropriate rhyme modeled on “’Twas the Night Before Christmas,” it tackles difficult content such as the Stonewall Riots and the AIDS marches. On the night before Pride, families everywhere are preparing to partake. As one family packs snacks and makes signs, an older sibling shares the importance of the march with the newest member of the family. Reflecting on the day, the siblings agree that the best thing about Pride is getting to be yourself. Debut author Joanna McClintick and Pura Belpré Award–winning author-illustrator Juana Medina create a new classic that pays homage to the beauty of families of all compositions – and of all-inclusive love.
A Queer History of the United States for Young People
By Michael Bronski
Adapted by Richie Chevat
336 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780807056127 | Beacon Press
It is crucial for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer youth to know their history. But this history is not easy to find since it’s rarely taught in schools or commemorated in other ways. A Queer History of the United States for Young People corrects this and demonstrates that LGBTQ people have long been vital to shaping our understanding of what America is today. Through engrossing narratives, letters, drawings, poems, and more, the book encourages young readers, of all identities, to feel pride at the accomplishments of the LGBTQ people who came before them and to use history as a guide to the future. Here we meet: Indigenous tribes who embraced same-sex relationships and a multiplicity of gender identities. Emily Dickinson, brilliant nineteenth-century poet who wrote about her desire for women. Gladys Bentley, Harlem blues singer who challenged restrictive cross-dressing laws in the 1920s. Bayard Rustin, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s close friend, civil rights organizer, and an openly gay man. Sylvia Rivera, cofounder of STAR, the first transgender activist group in the US in 1970. Kiyoshi Kuromiya, civil rights and antiwar activist who fought for people living with AIDS. Jamie Nabozny, activist who took his LGBTQ school bullying case to the Supreme Court. Aidan DeStefano, teen who brought a federal court case for trans-inclusive bathroom policies. And many more!
By Chella Man
Illustrated by Chella Man and Ashley Lukashevsky
64 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780593223482 | Penguin Workshop
Pocket Change Collective was born out of a need for space. Space to think. Space to connect. Space to be yourself. And this is your invitation to join us. This is a series of small books with big ideas from today’s leading activists and artists. What constructs in your life must you unlearn to support inclusivity and respect for all? This is a question that artist, actor, and activist Chella Man wrestles with in this powerful and honest essay. Complete with gorgeous, personal illustrations throughout, Continuum follows Chella’s experiences as a Deaf, transgender, genderqueer, Jewish person of color, and shows us that identity lies on a beautiful, messy, and ever-evolving road of exploration.
160 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780593521359 | Penguin Workshop
In a follow-up to Free to Be Me, DOM&INK returns with a collection of essays that highlight modern-day LGBTQIA+ pioneers who have changed the world – from well-known public figures and allies to up-and-comers you’ll wish you’d heard of earlier. Covering topics including coming out, gender, mental health, and activism, this book is packed full of empowering quotes, inspiring life lessons, and helpful advice that will encourage you to embrace your story and find your power.
Skate for Your Life
By Leo Baker
Illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky
64 Pages | Ages 12+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780593223475 | Penguin Workshop
Pocket Change Collective is a series of small books with big ideas from today’s leading activists and artists.”Your authenticity is your superpower.” That’s the motto that professional skateboarder Leo Baker lives by and champions. But like any hero’s journey, learning about their power didn’t come easy. In this installment of the Pocket Change Collective, Baker takes the reader on a complicated, powerful journey through the world of skate and competitive sport as a non-binary athlete.
Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights
By Ann Bausum
128 Pages | Ages 7+ | Paperback
ISBN 9780147511478 | Speak
A vivid retelling of a decades-long struggle for gay rights in America’s recent history, when being gay meant living a closeted life or existing on the fringes of society. Laws throughout the country criminalized homosexual behavior, the medical community viewed being gay as a sign of mental illness, and coming out could lead to being fired, shunned, and disowned. Until the Stonewall riots of 1969 occurred . . . and everything began to change. This narrative, illustrated with archival photographs, demonstrates how far the battle has come in the past four decades and yet how universal the struggles remain as young people of any era grow into their sexualities. With new content from the author!