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Pride books for kids
Photograph: Courtesy The Publishers

LGBTQ+ books for kids to read during Pride Month

These picks celebrate self-confidence and self-acceptance

By Oliver Strand
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It's Pride Month, and while the public celebrations have been canceled you can explore the history and meaning of this time with these LGBTQ+ books for kids. 

Gorgeous art, great characters, good storylines: These are books that celebrate diversity and inclusion, and are some of the best books for kids of all ages.

Be sure to check out Time Out's partnership with Global Pride for its first-ever #PrideWorldwide campaign and sit in on these amazing (virtual) drag queen storytimes

The Boy and the Bindi by Vivek Shraya

A five-year-old boy is fascinated by his mother's bindi, and wants one of his own. His mother agrees to it in this powerful story about love and acceptance. Ages 4-8. ($17.99)

The Best at It by Maulik Pancholy

Rahul is about to start middle school in a small town in Indiana. He has all the anxieties you'd expect to feel at that age: Will he fit in? What about the class bully? Does Justin like him back? Ages 8–12. ($16.99)

Drum Roll, Please by Lisa Jenn Bigelow

Melly didn't care too much about being a drummer when she auditioned for the school band, but she made the cut and now finds herself at band camp where she falls for a girl. This is a story about self-confidence, self-acceptance and self-love. Ages 8–12. ($16.99)

Hurricane Child by Kacen Callender

Caroline has been unlucky at school, and unhappy at home. Things turn round when a girl named Kalinda becomes her best friend—and things turn complicated when Caroline realizes she like-likes her. Now Caroline needs to strong enough to be honest with herself. Winner of the 2019 Stonewall Book Award. Ages 8-12. ($7.99)

The Gravity of Us by Phil Stamper

Cal's dad is an astronaut, and when the family relocates to Houston in advance of a trip to Mars, the 17-year-old meets another astronaut's son—and falls in love. When the two uncover secrets about the space mission, this teen romance turns into a teen adventure. Age range not specified. ($10.99)

Pride 1 2 3 by Michael Joosten

A colorful board book for younger readers turns counting into Pride-filled fun: "1 parade in the month of June, 2 DJs spin fabulous tunes, 3 families of all different types, 4 activists fight the good fight." Ages 5 and under. ($7.99)

Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag by Rob Sanders

This book tells the story of the iconic rainbow flag, and how a symbol used by activist and politician Harvey Milk in 1978 came to represent the celebration of LGBTQ+ throughout the world. Ages 5–8. ($17.99)

I am Jazz by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings

This is the real-life story of Jazz Jennings, a transgender child who has become a spokesperson for trans kids everywhere. Ages 4–8. ($17.99)

Julián is a Mermaid by Jessica Love

One day, Julián sees some women headed to the Mermaid Parade in fabulous, sweeping costumes. The young boy decides to piece together his own amazing mermaid outfit, and gets his skeptical grandmother to support and affirm how he sees himself. Ages 4–8. ($16.99)

Plenty of Hugs by Fran Manushkin

Two mommies spend a sunny day with their adorable toddler. They visit the farmstand, go to the zoo, spend time in the park, read a story and do everything a loving family does. Ages 2-5. ($17.99)

Love Makes a Family by Sophie Beer

What makes a family a family? Love, of course. This cheerful board book explores how a family isn’t only defined by a mommy and a daddy: A family with two daddies will read to their child at bedtime, while a family with two mommies will start the day with a happy breakfast, and both deeply love their little ones. Ages 4 and under. ($11.99)

My Princess Boy by Cheryl Kilodavis

Dyson likes the color pink, and sparkly things, and putting on dresses. He'll wear his tiara when he goofs around and climbs trees—that's what makes him a princess boy. This book about acceptance and confirmation is for everyone. Ages 4–8. ($17.99

My Rainbow by DeShanna Neal and Trinity Neal

Young Trinity wants hair like her dolls: Long and amazing. Her mother takes her to the wig store, but when nothing on the shelves expresses what Trinity feels, the two gather supplies and make an incredible and colorful wig. Ages 4–8. ($17.99)

Rainbow: A First Book of Pride by Michael Genhart

A celebration of rainbow families and LGBTQ+ people everywhere, this primer affirms the love between parents and their children. Ages 3–5. ($17.99)

Rainbow Revolutionaries: Fifty LGBTQ+ People Who Made History by Sarah Prager 

This vividly illustrated biography introduces 50 influential LGBTQ+ figures. Pop culture icons, ground-breaking politicians, community activists: This book takes young readers on a histroical journey that zigzags from Alexander the Great, to James Baldwin, to Billy Jean King, to Chinese Emperor Wen of Han. Ages 8–12. ($17.99)

A Song Only I Can Hear by Barry Jonsberg

As if middle school isn't hard enough, Rob is getting texts from a stranger that are forcing him out of his comfort zone. Does he keep his head down and stay under the radar? Or does he risk exposing himself to other kids? Ages 8-12. ($17.99)

Together We Grow by Susan Vaught

A storm forces all the animals into the barn—except for the foxes, who aren't welcome at first. The animals learn that there is room for everybody in the barn in this story about community and inclusivity. Ages 4-8. ($17.99)

Uncle Bobby's Wedding by Sarah S. Brannen

Young Chloe is not happy that her favorite uncle is getting married. When will he have time to go swimming, or visit the park or goof around if he marries his boyfriend? Chloe learns that her family can grow and become even more fun and loving. Ages 3–6. ($17.99)

When Aidan Became a Brother by Kyle Lukoff

Before he became Aidan, he didn’t feel like himself: He didn’t like his name, his clothes, or the gender that the world told him was his. Now that he’s a boy, Aidan is excited to be a big brother to the baby his family is about to have. Full of hope and joy, this book explores timely issues with positivity and sensitivity. Ages 3–7. ($18.95)

Worm Loves Worm by J. J. Austrian

When a worm falls in love with another worm and they decide to marry, all their friends are confused. Who will wear a tux? Who will wear a dress? It doesn't matter when they're both worms! Ages 4–8. ($17.99)

You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

Liz thought she was too awkward, too Black, too queer, too poor to win over anybody in her small Indiana town. But then she runs for Prom Queen—so that she can get a scholarship that will help pay for college. 14 and up. ($13.50)

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