The best children’s picture books with LGBTQ+ characters

The Books I Picked & Why

Mommy, Mama, and Me

By Leslea Newman, Carol Thompson

Mommy, Mama, and Me

Why this book?

This is a lovely little book, told in rhyming couplets, about sweet everyday moments between a child and one or the other of its mothers. At the end, both moms tuck the child, whose gender is not specified, into bed. The ink and watercolor illustrations capture each moment with positive emotions. 


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Maiden & Princess

By Daniel Haack, Isabel Galupo, Becca Human

Maiden & Princess

Why this book?

This sweet story told in rhyme begins with the usual trope of a royal family holding a ball to find a bride for the prince. One maiden, the bravest in the land, is not thrilled. The racially diverse cast of characters, illustrated in bright colors, find an ending satisfying to all when the maiden falls in love with the prince’s sister.


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When Aidan Became a Brother

By Kyle Lukoff, Kaylani Juanita

When Aidan Became a Brother

Why this book?

Everyone thought Aiden was a girl, but he hated the sound of his name and felt like his room belonged to someone else. Aiden knows he is a boy, and although it’s hard to tell his parents, he does. Spare, straightforward text and detailed illustrations will bring young readers along on Aiden’s journey as he gets ready to be a big brother to a new baby.


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Worm Loves Worm

By J. J. Austrian, Mike Curato

Worm Loves Worm

Why this book?

Worm and Worm decide to get married, with a supportive group of bugs. They have a few problems: they don’t have fingers, so how can they wear rings? And they both want to be the bride! In fact, they both want to be the groom, too. “We’ll just change how it’s done,” says Worm, and so they get married. A cute and funny story with delightful illustrations.


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Jerome by Heart

By Thomas Scotto, Olivier Tallec, Claudia Bedrick

Jerome by Heart

Why this book?

The main character, a little boy named Raphael, loves his friend Jerome. And Raphael loves Jerome for good reasons – Jerome makes him feel protected, Jerome holds his hand, “Jerome always sees me, even when he’s with his friends.” Despite a little opposition from Raphael’s parents, this is the warmest of books about how sweet and life-affirming the love between two children can be.


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