I’ve been talking with a woman named Alli Harper who is working on plans to demonstrate and leverage market demand for picture books and board books that include matter-of-fact depictions of queer characters. I first encountered her after she wrote this post earlier this year in which she puts out a compelling call for “everyday books about families like ours.” She’s looking for stories about kids who, like Mia and Tayja in my picture book Real Sisters Pretend, happen to have two moms or two dads; biographies of LGBTQ+ people; and stories like my other picture book A Crow of His Own, in which Farmer Kevin and Farmer Jay are a gay couple, but that’s not the focus of the story. Ever since I reached out to her, Alli and I have been talking about different books that have already been published and those that will come out soon while also dreaming up ways to support their place in the market.
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And if you know of board books or picture books publishing in 2018 or 2019 that sound like the ones we are looking for, please mention them in the comments on this post. We are specifically looking for books featuring human characters, and we are especially interested in works by and about BIPoC. I issued this request on Twitter yesterday and know of seven books so far, including my forthcoming sequel to A Crow of His Own:
- Prince and Knight by Daniel Haack, illustrated by Steve Lewis (Little Bee, Simon & Schuster May 2018)
- A Church for All by Gayle Pitman, illustrated by Laurie Fournier (Albert Whitman & Company May 2018)
- Stonewall: The Uprising for Gay Rights by Rob Sanders, illustrated by Jamey Christoph (Random House, spring 2019
- Maiden and Princess by Daniel Haack and Isabel Galupo, illustrated by Becca Human (Simon & Schuster, Little Bee, spring 2019)
- Finding Treasure: A Collection of Collections by Michelle Schaub (Charlesbridge 2019)
- A Kid of Their Own by Megan Dowd Lambert, illustrated by Jessica Lanan (Charlesbridge summer 2019)