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Transgender and Gender Fluid Books for Kids, Young Adults and Adults


Books for All Audiences

On Christopher Street: Transgender Stories | Photography by Mark Seliger, Foreword by Janet Mock

From Amazon:

 Renowned photographer Mark Seliger, best known for his portraits of celebrities, musicians, and artists, has called the West Village home for nearly two decades. For his latest book, On Christopher Street: Transgender Stories, his curiosity inspired him to shoot a handful of portraits—documentary style—in hopes of capturing the color, flamboyant characters, and theatre of a famous, but vanishing neighborhood.

What Seliger discovered was a nightly carnival of personalities that open up the visual discourse about sexuality and the constant ebb and flow of the transgender world we all inhabit today. The end result is a collection of 74 beautiful, black and white portraits, all taken with Seliger’s Hasselblad camera, and never-before-published.

Autobiography of a Transgender Scientist by Ben Barres

From the publisher’s webpage:

A leading scientist describes his life, his gender transition, his scientific work, and his advocacy for gender equality in science.

Super Late Bloomer: My Early Days in Transition by Julia Kaye

From Amazon:

Instead of a traditional written diary, Julia Kaye has always turned to art as a means of self-reflection. So when she began her gender transition in 2016, she decided to use her popular webcomic, Up and Out, to process her journey and help others with similar struggles realize they weren’t alone. Julia’s poignant, relatable comics honestly depict her personal ups and downs while dealing with the various issues involved in transitioning—from struggling with self-acceptance and challenging societal expectations, to moments of self-love and joy. Super Late Bloomer both educates and inspires, as Julia faces her difficulties head-on and commits to being wholly, authentically who she was always meant to be.

Song in a Weary Throat by Pauli Murray

From Amazon:

A prophetic memoir by the activist who “articulated the intellectual foundations” (The New Yorker) of the civil rights and women’s rights movements.

Redefining Realness by Janet Mock

From Amazon:

With unflinching honesty and moving prose, Janet Mock relays her experiences of growing up young, multiracial, poor, and trans in America, offering readers accessible language while imparting vital insight about the unique challenges and vulnerabilities of a marginalized and misunderstood population. Though undoubtedly an account of one woman’s quest for self at all costs, Redefining Realness is a powerful vision of possibility and self-realization, pushing us all toward greater acceptance of one another—and of ourselves—showing as never before how to be unapologetic and real.

Whipping Girl by Julia Serrano

From Amazon:

In the updated second edition of Whipping Girl, Julia Serano, a transsexual woman whose supremely intelligent writing reflects her diverse background as a lesbian transgender activist and professional biologist, shares her powerful experiences and observations—both pre- and post-transition—to reveal the ways in which fear, suspicion, and dismissiveness toward femininity shape our societal attitudes toward trans women, as well as gender and sexuality as a whole.

Serano's well-honed arguments stem from her ability to bridge the gap between the often-disparate biological and social perspectives on gender. In this provocative manifesto, she exposes how deep-rooted the cultural belief is that femininity is frivolous, weak, and passive, and how this “feminine” weakness exists only to attract and appease male desire. In addition to debunking popular misconceptions about transsexuality, Serano makes the case that today's feminists and transgender activists must work to embrace and empower femininity—in all of its wondrous forms.

Sissy: A Coming of Gender Story by Jacob Tobia

From Amazon:

As a young child in North Carolina, Jacob Tobia wasn't the wrong gender, they just had too much of the stuff. Barbies? Yes. Playing with bugs? Absolutely. Getting muddy? Please. Princess dresses? You betcha. Jacob wanted it all, but because they were "a boy," they were told they could only have the masculine half. Acting feminine labelled them "a sissy" and brought social isolation.

It took Jacob years to discover that being "a sissy" isn't something to be ashamed of. It's a source of pride. Following Jacob through bullying and beauty contests, from Duke University to the United Nations to the podiums of the Methodist church--not to mention the parlors of the White House--this unforgettable memoir contains multitudes. A deeply personal story of trauma and healing, a powerful reflection on gender and self-acceptance, and a hilarious guidebook for wearing tacky clip-on earrings in today's world, Sissy guarantees you'll never think about gender--both other people's and your own--the same way again.

How Sex Changed: A History of Transsexuality in the United States by Joanne Meyerowitz

From the publisher’s page:

How Sex Changed is a fascinating social, cultural, and medical history of transsexuality in the United States. Joanne Meyerowitz tells a powerful human story about people who had a deep and unshakable desire to transform their bodily sex. In the last century when many challenged the social categories and hierarchies of race, class, and gender, transsexuals questioned biological sex itself, the category that seemed most fundamental and fixed of all.

Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out
Susan Kuklin

A groundbreaking work of LGBTQ literature takes an honest look at the life, love and struggles of transgender teens.

Author and photographer Susan Kuklin met and interviewed six transgender or gender-neutral young adults, and used her considerable skills to represent them thoughtfully and respectfully before, during and after their personal acknowledgment of gender preference. Portraits, family photographs and candid images grace the pages, augmenting the emotional and physical journey each youth has taken. Each honest discussion and disclosure, whether joyful or heartbreaking, is completely different from the other because of family dynamics, living situations, gender and the transition these teens make in recognition of their true selves.

Some Assembly Required: The Not-So-Secret Life of a Transgender Teen
Arin Andrews

In this revolutionary first-of-its-kind memoir, Arin Andrews details the journey that led him to make the life-transforming decision to undergo gender reassignment as a high school junior. In his captivatingly witty, honest voice, Andrews reveals the challenges he faced as a boy in a girl’s body, the humiliation and anger he felt after getting kicked out of his private school, and all the changes — both mental and physical — he experienced once his transition began.

Some Assembly Required is a true coming-of-age story about knocking down obstacles and embracing family, friendship and first love. But more than that, it is a reminder that self-acceptance does not come ready-made with a manual and spare parts. Rather, some assembly is always required. 

The Gender Quest Workbook: A Guide for Teens & Young Adults Exploring Gender Identity
Rylan Jay Testa, Ph.D.; Deborah Coolhart, Ph.D.; Jayme Peta, M.A.

The Gender Quest Workbook incorporates skills, exercises and activities from evidence-based therapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, to help you address the broad range of struggles you may encounter related to gender identity, such as anxiety, isolation, fear and even depression.

The activities in this book will help you explore your identity internally, interpersonally and culturally. And along the way, you’ll learn how to effectively express yourself and make informed decisions on how to navigate your gender with family, friends, classmates and co-workers. The book also includes chapters on sex and dating, balancing multiple identities, and how to deal with stressful challenges when they arise.

Trans Bodies, Trans Selves: A Resource for the Trans Community
Edited by Laura Erickson-Schrot

While trans people share many common experiences, there is immense diversity within trans communities. There are an estimated 700,000 transgendered individuals in the U.S. and 15 million worldwide. Even still, there’s been a notable lack of organized information for this sizable group.

Trans Bodies, Trans Selves is a revolutionary resource — a comprehensive, reader-friendly guide for transgender people, with each chapter written by transgender or genderqueer authors. Inspired by Our Bodies, Ourselves, the classic and powerful compendium written for and by women, Trans Bodies, Trans Selves is widely accessible to the transgender population, providing authoritative information in an inclusive and respectful way, and representing the collective knowledge base of dozens of influential experts. Each chapter takes the reader through an important transgender issue, such as race, religion, employment, medical and surgical transition, mental health topics, relationships, sexuality, parenthood, arts and culture, and many more. 

Where’s My Book? A Guide for Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Youth, Their Parents, & Everyone Else
Linda Gromko, M.D.

Linda Gromko, M.D., is a board-certified family physician who has worked with the transgender community for nearly 18 years. She explains the basics of gender identity, sexual orientation, puberty, puberty blockers, hormone treatments and gender-affirming surgeries. She shares years of her patients’ wisdom and practical information on getting through every day in the best way possible — from coming out to parents, to school issues, to coping with depression, to love and sex.

Why is this book important? We know that transgender kids and their families need specialized information. Alarmingly, the suicide attempt rate among trans youth is close to 50 percent! This book is intended to give gender-nonconforming kids some of the information they need to grow to be happy, productive, loving and loved. It’s intended to provide the information we need as parents, educators and health care providers to do better with and for our kids. Honest, accurate, sensitive and straightforward, Dr. Gromko’s advice and explanations are a breath of fresh air. Anyone curious about this topic can benefit from her wisdom and clarity.

Books for Children and Young Adults (YA)

It Feels Good to Be Yourself: A Book About Gender Identity by Theresa Thorn, Illustrated by Noah Grigni

Grade level 1-2, Recommended reading age 4-8 yrs

From Amazon:

Some people are boys. Some people are girls. Some people are both, neither, or somewhere in between. This sweet, straightforward exploration of gender identity will give children a fuller understanding of themselves and others. With child-friendly language and vibrant art, It Feels Good to Be Yourself provides young readers and parents alike with the vocabulary to discuss this important topic with sensitivity.

I Am Not a Girl: A Transgender Story by Maddox Lyons & Jessica Verdi, Illustrated by Dana Simpson

Grade level 1-2, Recommended reading age 4-8 yrs

From Amazon:

Nobody seems to understand that Hannah is not a girl. His parents ask why he won't wear the cute outfits they pick out. His friend thinks he must be a tomboy. His teacher insists he should be proud to be a girl. But a birthday wish, a new word, and a stroke of courage might be just what Hannah needs to finally show the world who he really is.

10,000 Dresses
(Grades 1 – 3)
Marcus Ewert

 A modern fairy tale about becoming the person you feel you are inside. While Bailey dreams of beautiful dresses, no one wants to hear about it because he is a boy. Then, an older girl comes along who is inspired by Bailey, and they make beautiful dresses together.

Annie’s Plaid Shirt
(K – Grade 1)
Stacy B. Davids

Annie’s mom tells her that she must wear a dress to her uncle’s wedding. Annie protests, but her mom buys her a fancy new dress anyway. Annie is miserable. Why can't her mom understand? Then, Annie has an idea. But will her mom agree?

(Grades 3-6)
Alex Gino

When people look at George, they think they see a boy. But she knows she’s not a boy; she knows she’s a girl. George really wants to play Charlotte in Charlotte’s Web. Will she be able to?

Gracefully Grayson
(Grades 5-7)
Ami Polonsky

Grayson has been holding onto a secret for what seems like forever: “He” is a girl on the inside. Will new strength from an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher’s wisdom be enough to help Grayson?

I am Jazz
(K – 5)
Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings

From the time she was 2 years old, Jazz knew that she had a girl’s brain in a boy’s body. She loved pink and dressing up as a mermaid, and didn’t feel like herself in boys’ clothing. Based on the real-life experience of Jazz Jennings.

Introducing Teddy: A Gentle Story About Gender and Friendship
(Pre-K – K)
Jess Walton

Introduces the youngest readers to understanding gender identity and transition in an accessible and heart-warming story about being true to yourself and being a good friend.

Jacob’s New Dress
(Pre-K – 2)
Sarah and Ian Hoffman

Jacob loves playing dress-up, when he can be anything he wants to be. Some kids at school say he can't wear “girl” clothes, but Jacob wants to wear a dress. Can he convince his parents to let him wear what he wants? Speaks to the unique challenges faced by boys who don’t identify with traditional gender roles.

Lily and Dunkin 
(Grades 5-7)
Donna Gephart

As eighth grade begins, both Lily and Dunkin are trying to establish new identities for themselves. Everyone sees Lily as Timothy, but she is ready for the real her to be known. Dunkin just moved to town and wants to leave his past behind.

My Princess Boy 
(Pre-K – 1)
Cheryl Kilodavis, Aladdin

Dyson loves pink, sparkly things. Sometimes he wears dresses. Sometimes he wears jeans. He likes to wear his princess tiara, even when climbing trees.

One of a Kind, Like Me / Unico Como Yo
(Pre-K – 1)
Laurin Mayeno

Tomorrow is the school parade, and Danny knows exactly what he will be: a princess. A sweet story about unconditional love and the beauty of individuality.

Red: A Crayon's Story
(Pre-K – Grade 1)
Michael Hall 

A blue crayon mistakenly labeled as "red" suffers an identity crisis. Almost everyone tries to “help” him be red until a friend offers a new perspective. He’s blue! About finding the courage to be true to your inner self. This can be read on multiple levels.

Riding Freedom
(Grades 4-6)
Pam Muñoz Ryan

A fictionalized account of the true story of Charley (Charlotte) Parkhurst, who ran away from an orphanage, lived as a boy, moved to California and became a stagecoach driver.  

The Adventures of Tulip, Birthday Wish Fairy
(Pre-K – Grade 3)
S. Bear Bergman

Follow Tulip as he deals with the birthday wishes of all the 9-year-olds in North America. Tulip receives a wish from a child known as David who wishes to live as Daniela. He doesn't understand how to help, so he seeks the wise counsel of the Wish Fairy Captain.

The Boy in the Dress
(Grades 5 – 7)
David Williams and Quentin Blake (Illustrator)

Dennis’s dad is depressed since his mom left, and his brother is a bully. But at least he has soccer. Then, he discovers he enjoys wearing a dress. Told with humor and respect.

The Other Boy
(Grades 5-10)
M. G. Hennessey

Twelve-year-old Shane, a transgender boy, has moved to a new city and school where people only know him as a boy. He loves playing baseball, reading graphic novels and hanging out with his best friend. But an older boy undermines Shane’s privacy. Show Shane’s range of emotions from anxiety and fear to happiness and courage. Discusses hormone treatments directly.

Books for Adults, Parents and Guardians

He's Always Been My Son by Janna Barkin

From Amazon:

This inspiring and moving story, told from the heart of an extraordinary family, recounts the emotional and uplifting journey of raising a transgender son. Janna Barkin's family has come a long way since their child, Amaya, first told them he was a boy and not a girl and this captivating memoir charts the family's experiences of raising Amaya, from birth through to adulthood. With powerful chapters written by Amaya's family and friends, Janna shares personal stories of the support and discoveries her family has encountered and provides a 'care package' of advice for families facing similar issues, including a glossary of terms and a list of hand-picked support sources.

Helping your Transgender Teen: A Guide for Parents by Irwin Krieger

From Amazon:

If you are the parent of a transgender teen, this book will help you understand what your child is feeling and experiencing. Irwin Krieger is a clinical social worker with many years of experience helping transgender teens. This book brings you the insights gained from his work with these teenagers and their families. According to the author, “Today’s teens have access to a wealth of information on the internet. Teenagers who are wondering about gender identity soon find out what it means to be transgender or transsexual. Parents, on the other hand, know little about this topic. When a teenager declares he or she is transgender, parents fear that their child is confused and is choosing a life fraught with danger. I wrote this book to help parents of transgender teens gain an understanding of this complex subject.”

Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family
Amy Ellis Nutt

Captures the inspiring true story of identical twins, one of whom is transgender, and a family’s journey to acceptance.

Freeing Ourselves: A Guide to Health and Self-Love for Brown Bois
The Brown Bois Project

Our friends at The Brown Boi Project looked high and low for a health curriculum that centered on the needs of these communities, and when they didn’t find it they created it.

The curriculum encompasses areas on mental, spiritual and emotional health, and shares the lived experiences of GNC and trans POC on the margin. It provides step-by-step directives on how pelvic exams are performed, and comprehensive STI tables and safe sex advice specifically tailored to the sexual experiences of GNC, MoC and trans people. In addition to expansive health practices, Freeing Ourselves gives open-ended guidance on diet, energy and physical practice; holistic care through gender transition; and direction on how to choose health care allies that best center the needs of the community.

The very real stories, shorts and poems of Brown Bois chronicled in the book delivers an empathetic energy that can make talking about sex, sexuality and health care easier and more applicable. 

Gender Born, Gender Made
Diane Ehrensaft

A groundbreaking guide to caring for children who live outside binary gender boxes.
No two children who bend the “rules” of gender do so in quite the same way. But all gender-nonconforming children have one thing in common―they need support to thrive in a society that still subscribes to a binary system of gender.

Diane Ehrensaft has worked with children like Felicia, Sam, and Maggie for over 30 years. In Gender Born, Gender Made, she offers parents, clinicians, and educators guidance on both the philosophical dilemmas and the practical, daily concerns of working with children who don’t fit a “typical” gender mold. She debunks outmoded approaches to gender nonconformity that may actually do children harm. And she offers a new framework for helping each child become his or her own unique, most gender-authentic person.

Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son
Lori Duron

A frank, heartfelt, and brutally funny account of Lori Duron and her family's adventures of distress and happiness raising a gender-creative son. Whereas her older son, Chase, is a Lego-loving, sports-playing boy's boy, her younger son, C.J., would much rather twirl around in a pink, sparkly tutu. Based on Duron’s popular blog.

Raising Ryland: Our Story of Parenting a Transgender Child with No Strings Attached
Hillary Whittington

Whittington's first told Ryland’s story in a short video for the teachers in his new school as he began kindergarten. The video soon went viral. In this moving account, you are now taken on the path of his parents as they transform their understanding of gender and learn to take the many steps needed to support the life of their child.

Supporting Transgender and Gender Creative Youth: Schools, Families, and Communities in Action
Elizabeth Meyer and Annie Pullen Sansfaçon (Editors)

Specifically addresses issues and challenges in education, social work, medicine, and counseling and offers recommendations that are relevant for parents, families, practitioners and educators alike.

The Gender Creative Child: Pathways for Nurturing and Supporting Children Who Live Outside Gender Boxes
Diane Ehrensaft and Norman Spack

A comprehensive resource that explains the interconnected effects of biology, nurture, and culture to explore why gender can be fluid, rather than binary. A guide through the rapidly changing cultural, medical, and legal landscape of gender and identity.

The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals
Stephanie A. Brill & Rachel Pepper

Through extensive research and interviews, as well as years of experience working in the field, the authors cover gender variance from birth through college.
How can parents advocate for their children in elementary schools? What are the current laws on the rights of transgender children? What do doctors specializing in gender-variant children recommend? What advice do other families who have trans kids have? What about hormone blockers and surgery? What issues should your college-bound trans child be thinking about when selecting a school?

How can I best raise my gender variant or transgender child with love and compassion, even when I barely understand the issues ahead of us? And what is gender, anyway? These questions and more are answered in this book offering a deeper understanding of gender variant and transgender children and teens. 

The Transgender Teen
Stephanie A. Brill and Lisa Kenney

This comprehensive guidebook explores the unique challenges that thousands of families face every day raising a teenager who may be transgender, non-binary or gender-fluid. Covers topics relating to physical and emotional development, social and school pressures, medical considerations, and family communications.

Transgender 101: A Simple Guide to a Complex Issue
Nicholas M. Teich

A readable and thorough primer on the history, terminology, types, politics, and medical and social realities of the transgender population. Written for students, professionals, friends and family members.

Small Books

A Quick Easy Guide to Trans Identities by Mady G. and Jules Zuckerberg

From Amazon:

In this quick and easy guide to queer and trans identities, cartoonists Mady G and Jules Zuckerberg guide you through the basics of the LGBT+ world! Covering essential topics like sexuality, gender identity, coming out, and navigating relationships, this guide explains the spectrum of human experience through informative comics, interviews, worksheets, and imaginative examples. A great starting point for anyone curious about queer and trans life, and helpful for those already on their own journeys!

A Quick and Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns by Archie Bongiovanni and Tristan Jimerson

From Amazon:

Archie, a snarky genderqueer artist, is tired of people not understanding gender neutral pronouns. Tristan, a cisgender dude, is looking for an easy way to introduce gender neutral pronouns to his increasingly diverse workplace. The longtime best friends team up in this short and fun comic guide that explains what pronouns are, why they matter, and how to use them. They also include what to do if you make a mistake, and some tipsand-tricks for those who identify outside of the binary to keep themselves safe in this binary-centric world. A quick and easy resource for people who use they/them pronouns, and people who want to learn more!

Beyond the Gender Binary by Alok Vaid-Menon

From Amazon:

Pocket Change Collective is a series of small books with big ideas from today's leading activists and artists. In this installment, Beyond the Gender Binary, Alok VaidMenon challenges the world to see gender not in black and white, but in full color. Taking from their own experiences as a gender-nonconforming artist, they show us that gender is a malleable and creative form of expression. The only limit is your imagination.

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