June is Pride month, and this year we are not only celebrating the LGBTQIA+ community, we are standing up and speaking out against hate. According to a report from the American Library Association, the number of demands to ban or restrict library materials nearly doubled in 2022. Of the 2,571 unique titles targeted for censorships, the majority were written by or about members of the LGBTQIA+ community and people of color. This cannot go ignored. This Pride month, support the LGBTQIA+ community with your voices and with your dollars.
WATCH: In Conversation with Lesléa Newman & Maya Gonzalez
In this conversation moderated by Booklist Books for Youth Editor Sarah Hunter, I Can Be. . . Me! creators explore gender, identity, book bans, and more. This conversation originally took place during our spring-summer 2023 showcase.
I Can Be. . . Me! by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Maya Gonzalez
Join six fabulous children who, through creative play, explore all kinds of ways to be their authentic selves in this fun rhyming book!
More Lee & Low LGBTQIA+ Titles
When Aidan Became a Brother by Kyle Lukoff, illustrated by Kaylani Juanita
⭐ “Joyful and affirming, Aidan’s story is the first of its kind among books for welcoming a new baby.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Download the teacher’s guide and check out the Spanish edition.
Sparkle Boy by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Maria Mola
Young Casey loves sparkly things, but his older sister Jessie does not approve of his interest until an encounter with bullies helps her learn to accept and respect Casey for who he is.
Call Me Tree/Llámame Árbol written and illustrated by Maya Christina Gonzalez
A gender-neutral tale of self-discovery told by a child who grows, learns about the natural world, embraces others, and is free to become whoever they are meant to be—a child as unique as a tree. Bilingual English/Spanish.
Antonio’s Card/La Tarjeta de Antonio by Rigoberto González, illustrated by Cecilia Álvarez
In this groundbreaking bilingual picture book, Antonio decides to make a Mother’s Day card for both his mother and her partner.
How We Can Live: Principles of Black Lives Matter by Laleña Garcia, illustrated by Caryn Davidson
⭐ “An important message for all young people, this is approachable but profound in its message, and a welcome addition to any elementary library.” — School Library Journal, starred review
The Harvey Milk Story by Kari Krakow, illustrated by David Gardner
A hopeful and inspiring biography of the historic gay activist Harvey Milk, who gave people the courage to be proud of who they are.
That Summer Night on Frenchmen Street by Chris Clarkson
Set in magical New Orleans, two teens from vastly different worlds find that sharing their strengths, including the love of their friends and family, may just be the path to finding wholeness within themselves.
The Witch Owl Parliament (Clockwork Curandera Vol. I by David Bowles & Raúl the Third, coloring by Stacey Robinson and lettering by Damian Duffy
Discover a graphic novel unlike any other–a brilliant steampunk reimagining of Frankenstein set in colonial Mexico.
Gabi, A Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero
⭐ “A fresh, authentic and honest exploration of contemporary Latina identity.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Boys of the Beast by Monica Zepeda
Three cousins. Four days. One car. This smart and fearless road-trip novel is perfect for fans of Benjamin Alire Sáenz or Meg Medina.
Jaya and Rasa: A Love Story by Sonia Patel
Jaya’s a rich kid. Rasa’s motherless and broke. Opposite sides of the tracks. Romeo and Juliet, on fair Oahu.