LGBTQAI+ Books for Children and Teens: Providing a Window for All

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  • Description
  • Table of Contents
  • About the Authors
  • Reviews

There is a rich and varied body of literature for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning, asexual/allied and intersexed young people, which can function as a mirror for LGBTQAI+ individuals and as a window for others. This resource for librarians who work with children and teens not only surveys the best in LGBTQAI+ lit but, just as importantly, offers guidance on how to share it in ways that encourage understanding and acceptance among parents, school administrators, and the wider community. Helping to fill a gap in serving this population, this guide

  • discusses the path to marriage equality, how LGBTQAI+ terms have changed, and reasons to share LGBTQAI+ literature with all children;
  • presents annotated entries for a cross-section of the best LGBTQAI+ lit and nonfiction for young children, middle year students, and teens, with discussion questions and tips;
  • offers advice on sensitive issues such as starting conversations with young people, outreach to stakeholders, and dealing with objections and censorship head on; and
  • ideas for programming and marketing.

This resource gives school librarians, children’s, and YA librarians the guidance and tools they need to confidently share these books with the patrons they support.

Foreword: LGBTQAI+ Books Save Lives, by Jamie Campbell Naidoo
Introduction: Windows into Reality

Chapter 1    Books and Conversation for Young Readers
Chapter 2    Books and Conversation for Middle Grade Readers
Chapter 3    Books and Conversation for Teen Readers

Final Thoughts: It’s about Basic Human Rights
Appendix: Additional Resources
About the Authors

Christina Dorr

Christina Dorr, PhD, teaches at Weaver Middle School, part of the Hilliard City School District, Hilliard, Ohio. She has been a media specialist for twenty-seven years and has also taught literature, literacy, technology, and library science courses for the past twelve years as an adjunct instructor for five universities in Ohio, including Kent State University and the Ohio State University, where she had earned a doctorate in education with a specialty in literature and literacy. Dorr has written book reviews and columns for various journals for many years, presented at numerous state and national organizations, and served on several book award committees for the American Library Association, including currently chairing the 2018 Stonewall Committee. This is her second coauthored book with Liz Deskins; the first was Linking Picture Book Biographies with National Content Standards: 200+ Lives to Explore (Libraries Unlimited 2015).

Liz Deskins

Liz Deskins has been a school librarian for thirty years, teaching at the elementary, high school, and college levels. She is currently teaching at Hilliard Bradley High School, in Hilliard, Ohio. She is a past president of Buckeye Children and Teens Book Awards as well as past president of OELMA (Ohio Educational Library Media Association). Liz has served on committees and task forces for the American Association of School Librarians and the Association for Library Service to Children. She also serves as Curriculum Editor for the School Library Connection reVIEWS+ online journal, which helps to fuel her passion for writing on topics of interest to school librarians. Her latest award was the 2017 OELMA Outstanding Contributor Award, which recognizes an Ohio-licensed school librarian who has made outstanding contributions to school librarianship. A requested presenter at conferences, Liz speaks on many topics, thanks to her lifelong passion for learning new things and sharing them with others! This is her second book collaboration with Christina Dorr; the first was Linking Picture Book Biographies to National Content Standards: 200+ Lives to Explore (Libraries Unlimited 2015).

"Beginning with a touching foreword from Jamie Campbell Naidoo about the importance of LGBTQAI+ literature, the book’s tone is warm and its advice universally applicable to school and public libraries large and small, rural and urban ... A solid starting point for someone new to LGBTQAI+ literature.”
— Booklist

"Citing powerful research and quotations from other advocates for diversity, the authors argue in their introduction that including LGBTQAI+ literature in libraries and curricula is part of taking a stand for basic human rights. A history of children’s and YA LGBTQAI+ literature is followed by ways to address book challenges ... This volume does a superb job on many fronts. An essential purchase for public and school libraries, especially given that few other selections on this topic exist.”
— School Library Journal (starred review)

"Comprehensive ... This book is an excellent reference guide for school and public youth librarians looking to improve representation of the LGBTQAI+ community in their library's collection.”