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The Rise in Transgender Children's Books

Recent and forthcoming titles include I am Jazz (Dial Books/Penguin Young Readers Group), a picture book co-written by transgender teen Jazz Jennings; the middle-grade novel Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky (Disney Hyperion); and Alex Gino’s much-anticipated George (Scholastic). Whether fictional, nonfictional, or somewhere in between, these children’s books fill a gap in cultural representation.

Authors and publishers are hopeful that the diverse range of books on transgender themes will continue to expand, in spite of some resistance from gatekeepers.

A few years ago, gender fluidity was rarely addressed in children’s and young adult fiction. It remained one of the last taboos in a publishing category that had already taken on difficult issues…But children’s literature is catching up to the broader culture, as stereotypes of transgender characters have given way to nuanced and sympathetic portrayals. (The New York Times)

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