Gender Expression and Gender Identity

Picture books focusing on issues of gender expression and gender identity during the early years of a child's development. You may also be interested in our Rainbow Reads list. Click here for a print-friendly version of this list.

Author Title Call Number
AustrianWorm Loves Worm
Which one will be the bride and groom is the question when two worms marry.
JE Austrian
AcostaI Love My Colorful Nails
Ben likes painting his nails, until some of the kids at school tease him. When Dad realizes why Ben is sad, he decides to paint his nails, too.
JE Acosta
Because Neither is unlike both the rabbits and the birds of the Land of This and That, it sets out to find a place where all creatures are welcome.
JE Anderson
BaldacchinoMorris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress
A young boy faces adversity from classmates when he wears an orange dress at school.
JE Baldacchino
Bardhan-QuallenChicks Rule!
Chicks of all ilks work together to puzzle out how to respond to a sign forbidding chicks from attending the Rocket Club meeting.
JE Bardhan-Quallen
BirdsongI Will Be Fierce!
It's a brand-new day, and a young girl decides to take on the world like a brave explorer heading off on an epic fairytale quest.
JE Birdsong
GaleHo'onani: Hula Warrior
Ho'onani, who feels in between wahine (girl) and kane (boy), dreams of leading her school's all-male dance troupe.
JE Gale
GonzalezThey, She, He, Me: Free to Be!
Pronouns serve to expand ideas about gender and celebrate personal expression.
J305.3 GO
HallRed: A Crayon's Story as Told by Me!
A crayon mistakenly labeled "red" suffers an identity crisis.
JE Hall
HerthelI Am Jazz
The story of a transgender child, based on the real-life experience of Jazz Jennings, now an activist for trans kids.
JE Herthel
HoffmanJacob's New Dress
Jacob, who likes to wear dresses at home, convinces his parents to let him wear a dress to school, too.
JE Hoffman
HoweBig Bob, Little Bob
Big Bob likes trucks and being loud. Little Bob likes dolls and being quiet. Can they be friends?
JE Howe
HowleyBig Boys Cry
As they walk to his new school, a frightened Levi and his father learn that it is okay for big boys to cry.
JE Howley
KilodavisMy Princess Boy
Inspired by her son, who loves dressing in princess clothing, this is one mother's story about unconditional love.
JE Kilodavis
LoveJulian Is a Mermaid
Inspired by women on the subway, who are dressed as brilliant mermaids, Julian sets about creating his own mermaid costume.
JE Love
LukoffWhen Aidan Becomes a Brother
Aidan, a transgender boy, experiences complicated emotions as he and his parents prepare for the arrival of a new baby.
JE Lukoff
NegleyMary Wears What She Wants
Once upon a time, only boys wore pants, until one day, a girl named Mary wore whatever she wanted. And she wanted to wear pants!
JE Negley
NewmanSparkle Boy
Casey wants a shimmery skirt and painted nails like his older sister, Jessie, but Jessie does not at first approve.
JE Newman
RosenthalDear Boy
Encourages boys to love themselves as they are, advising them to be confident, curious, adaptable, and willing to speak up.
JE Rosenthal
ShrayaThe Boy & the Bindi
A young boy is fascinated with the dot on his mother's forehead.
JE Shraya
SilvermanJack (Not Jackie)
Susan loves her baby sister, but as Jackie grows older, Susan must accept that her sibling is a brother, Jack, instead.
JE Silverman
SpanyolClive and his Hats
A gentle, affectionate book, celebrating diversity and challenging gender stereotypes.
JE Board Book S
ThomFrom the Stars in the Sky to the Fish in the Sea
A magical gender variant child brings transformation and change to the world around them thanks to their mother's enduring love.
JE Thom
ThornIt Feels Good to Be Yourself: A Book About Gender identity
A picture book that introduces the concept of gender identity.
J305.3 TH
TohtDress Like a Girl
Girls dress in space suits, police officer uniforms, and lab coats, demonstrating that girls can be anything they want to be.
JE Toht
TrimmerTeddy's Favorite Toy
A mom goes to great lengths to rescue her son’s favorite doll.
JE Trimmer
When Mike discovers that his rough-and-tumble new puppy is a female, he tries to make her into a dainty dog.
JE U'Ren
ZolotowWilliam's Doll
William's father gives him a basketball and a train, but these do not make him want a doll less.
JE Zolotow

Last Updated: 10/19


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