Rainbow Book List

Currently Reading – August edition

Posted by: kmwashburn1 on: September 4, 2018

Hello Rainbow List Fans! My name is Kevin (pronouns, He, Him, His, Himself) and I’m a school librarian in North Carolina. My area of interest is primary picture books and children’s novels.  In this post, I would like to share with you some of the picture books that have recently been nominated that I’ve been fortunate to read.

Phoenix Goes to School by Michelle and Phoenix Finch, illustrated by Sharon Davey.  Described as “A Story to Support Transgender and Gender Diverse Children”, which beautifully illustrates the feelings and emotions that can be found in a child whose gender identity doesn’t match their body.  Using the experience of attending school for the first time, Phoenix is afraid to wear a dress to school.  With the support of her family, Phoenix arrives at school and is able to overcome her fears.   With wonderful illustrations that bring the characters to life, this book is an excellent resource for teaching children that everyone has something beautiful and unique in them.

Prince and Knight by Daniel Haack, illustrated by Stevie Lewis.  “Once upon a time” as the story begins, provides the classic setting for this wonderful narrative based upon a fairytale theme.  With his parents concerned that he should find a bride, the prince feels that none of the young ladies that he meets have that “something special in a partner by my side.”  Then appears a vicious dragon that threatens to destroy the kingdom.  The prince rushes to defend the land and fortunately was not alone for also arrived just in time was a knight on horseback.  Through a struggle that saves both the prince and knight, the dragon was caught but not without a fight.  Luckily, the knight also caught the prince and saved the day.  Needless to say, the rest of the story illustrates how perfect the prince and knight were for each other and ends with a happy ever after.

Want to Play Trucks by Ann Stott and illustrated by Bob Graham is a story about two boys who are playground friends.  Though what they enjoy as toys are very different (Jack likes trucks, Alex likes dolls), the friends enjoy their time together.  The story builds on a series of play activities that require the boys to compromise.  The unique component of this story is that gender role and gender stereotypes are abandoned.  An excellent representation that what makes each person different and special can also be the bridge to what everyone has in common.  Inviting and warm illustrations make this book one that children will want to read again and again.

Visit the Rainbow List Blog regularly to see what other books are under consideration for next year!


August Titles Under Consideration

Posted by: kmwashburn1 on: September 3, 2018

The following 10 titles are under consideration by the Rainbow List Committee for the month of August:

Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza by Shaun David Hutchinson
Being Fishkill by Ruth Leher
Dear Rachel Maddow by Adrienne Kisner
Drum Roll, Please by Lisa Jenn Bigelow
Elle of the Ball by Elena Delle Donne
Love is Love by Michael Genhart
Phoenix Goes to School by Michelle Finch
Picture Us In The Light by Kelly Loy Gilbert
Summer of Salt by Katrina Leno
Witch Boy by Molly Knox Ostertag

Titles under Consideration as of August 6

Posted by: Gregory on: August 6, 2018

Hello, Rainbow Readers!

Since our last update on July 1, we have seven new titles under consideration:


Between the Blade and the Heart  by Amanda Hocking

A Possibility of Whales  by Karen Rivers

Anger is a Gift  by Mark Oshiro

Ship of the Dead  by Rick Riordan

Social Intercourse  by Greg Howard

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

Caterpillars Can’t Swim  by Liane Shaw


Currently Reading – July edition

Posted by: Gregory on: July 24, 2018

Hello! We’re experiencing a heatwave of 100-degree days here in Boise; perfect weather for staying inside and reading! My name is Gregory and I’m excited to be a member of the Rainbow List committee this year. I’m a junior high Teacher Librarian, so I’m enjoying having extra reading time in the summer months. Here are some of the books I’ve been reading lately:

Caterpillars Can’t Swim by Liane Shaw (YA novel)
Ryan swims for his high school team, despite being wheelchair-bound due to Cerebral Palsy which mostly affects his lower legs. Early one morning, while out at a favorite spot in the park, Ryan sees a girl dancing by the river’s edge. She plunges into the water and seems to be drowning. Ryan throws himself off the bridge and rescues the dancer… who turns out to be Jack, a boy from Ryan’s school, wearing his mother’s skirt. The two boys reluctantly become acquaintances, then friends. Jack is finally able to talk about what it’s like being gay in a small, conservative Southern town.

A Quick and Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns by Archie Bongiovanni and Tristan Jimerson
Archie and Tristan, two real-life friends, have a conversation about pronouns in graphic novel format. The simple black and white illustrations are clear and fun, and the explanations are direct and easy to understand. This is a great resource for anyone struggling with they/them pronouns or wanting to help others learn.

Harriet Gets Carried Away by Jessie Sima (picture book)
Harriet loves costumes, and she’s having a costume birthday party soon. She dons her penguin costume to go shopping with her parents — one black, one white, both male — and while her dads are busy at the deli counter, Harriet finds herself on an adventure with a pack of penguins, an orca, and some pigeons from the park!

Social Intercourse by Greg Howard (YA novel)
Beck is flamboyant, out and proud, and desperate to lose his gay virginity. Jax is a good-looking, popular jock with two moms and a hot girlfriend. The two high schoolers narrate their stories in alternating chapters and bold, honest (if occasionally un-PC) detail. Funny, dramatic, shocking, sexy… this book is a big, gay rollercoaster, without a doubt!

Be sure to check back here frequently to see what other committee members are reading, and what books are under consideration for next year’s Rainbow List!

Titles Under Consideration as of July 1

Posted by: gemma on: July 1, 2018

There were a lot of titles added to the under consideration list this month!

Beating Bullying at Home and in Your Community by Clara MacCarald

The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfolk

The Brightsiders by Jen Wilde

Bygone Badass Broads: 52 Forgotten Women Who Changed the World by Mackenzi Lee

Chaotic Good by Whitney Gardner

A Church for All by Gayle E. Pitman

The Dangerous Art of Blending In by Angelo Surmelis

The Diminished by Kaitlyn Sage Patterson

Echo After Echo by Amy Rose Capetta

The Gallery of Unfinished Girls by Lauren Karcz

Gay-Straight Alliances by Kristina Lyn Heitkamp

Harriet Gets Carried Away by Jessie Sima

Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston

How I Resist: Activism and Hope for the Next Generation by Maureen Johnson

Hullmetal Girls by Emily Skrutskie

I Hate Everyone but You by Gaby Dunn and Allison Raskin

I Have Lost My Way by Gayle Forman

Jerome by Heart by Thomas Scotto

Julián is a Mermaid by Jessica Love

Kim Reaper, Vol. 1: Grim Beginnings by Sarah Graley

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver Presents a Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo by Jill Smith

Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann

Nothing Happened by Molly Booth

Neither by Airlie Anderson

Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag by Rob Sanders

Prince & Knight by Daniel Haack

Release by Patrick Ness

Sam and Ilsa’s Last Hurrah by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Sewing the Rainbow by Gayle E. Pitman

Ship It by Britta Lundin

The True Adventures of Ester the Wonder Pig by Steve Jenkins and Derek Walter

White Rabbit by Caleb Roehrig

Your Rights as an LGBTQ+ Teen by Barbra Penne and Patrick Rehehan

Titles under consideration: June edition

Posted by: peshling on: June 15, 2018

Currently reading – June edition

Posted by: gemma on: June 15, 2018

Happy June everyone!  This is Gemma Doyle, member of the 2019 Rainbow Booklist Committee and New England resident who is extremely happy that summer has finally arrived.

Here’s what I’ve been reading lately:

Dread Nation by Justina Ireland: I started reading this book without knowing anything about the plot, and I really liked the writing and I loved Jane’s character and the tiny bits of the world we were seeing… and then realized what the book was about.  The problem: I am not a fan of zombies.  At all.  I love paranormal, but somehow zombies have always been a bridge too far for me (which is a shame, because zombies were really big for a while, and I’m sure there are a ton of great books I would love except for the… you know.)  Here’s the thing about <i>Dread Nation</i>, though: while the “shamblers” are front and center as the main villains in the plot, the book really isn’t about them.  It’s about Jane and her frenemy Katherine and a large cast of interesting characters of color, and how they interact with each other and deal with the shambler menace that’s always there, threatening. The human villains (and there are a lot!) take precedence, and that makes the story rich and powerful.  This is the first book in a series, and I cannot wait to read the next one.

Prince & Knight by Daniel Haack (Illustrated by Stevie Lewis) This is a picture book about a Prince and Knight working together to defeat a dragon (spoiler: they don’t kill the dragon) and (also spoiler) falling in love at the same time.  The story and the art are super cute and this is the kind of children’s book that appeals to parents, too – especially when they have to read it 14 or 15 times in a row.  (Always a thing…sigh.)

Enjoy the rest of June!

Titles Under Consideration as of May 1st 2018

Posted by: BWoodruff on: May 14, 2018

​Hello again, Rainbow Readers!

The following titles are under consideration for the 2019 Rainbow Book List as of May 1st, 2018.

​​Girl Made of Stars by Ashley Herring Blake
​​Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World by Ashley Herring Blake
​​In Other Lands by Sarah Rees Brennan
​​I Love My Purse by Belle Demont
​​Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody
​​BINGO Love written by Tee Franklin, illustrated by Jenn St-Onge and Joy San
​​Fire Song by Adam Garnet Jones
​​The Summer of Jordi Perez (And the Best Burger in Los Angeles) by Amy Spalding
​​The Backstagers, Volume 2 :The Show Must Go On written by James Tynion IV, illustrated by Rian Sygh
​​Spinning by Tillie Walden

The committee’s TBR list is still growing– so far we have a list of over 200 potentially eligible titles! (How’s that for representation, amirite?) Keep sending us your suggestions at http://glbtrt.ala.org/rainbowbooks/suggestions .

Happy Reading!

Becky Woodruff

Currently Reading – April Edition!

Posted by: BWoodruff on: April 19, 2018

Greetings, Rainbow Readers! Becky here– Rainbow Booklist Committee member and Teen Services Librarian in Delaware, Ohio repping the B contingent of LGBTQIA+.

Pretty sure I’m supposed to highlight a book I’m currently reading, but I’ve been inhaling some goodies lately and just have to sprinkle in a few.

The Prince and the Dressmaker  by Jen Wang (a graphic novel I’ve been making gimme hands at since mid-2016) is the ADORABLE story of… well, a prince and his dressmaker. The art is just lovely, and the characters are cute as buttons, every single one.

Chaotic Good by Whitney Gardner is everything my nerdy little heart desired– it’s got cosplay, D&D, feminism, comics, and some Shakespearean level gender bending shenanigans (resulting in a 2/3 queer love triangle-y shape).

The Witch Boy by Molly Knox Ostertag made me want to catch up on Strong Female Protagonist — loooove Molly’s artwork, and loved this quick, fantastical read about busting up some gender roles!

I’ve had to put down Anna-Marie McLemore’s Wild Beauty a few times, not because it’s bad (on the contrary, it’s excellent so far), but because her intense, vivid descriptions of the lush gardens of La Pradera pull me so far into the world of the novel I can feel the suffocating atmosphere of the characters’ microcosm. Definitely a slow, savory sort of novel– and again, really excellent.

Between bouts of Wild Beauty, I’m inhaling Mask of Shadows by Linsey Miller. It’s the story of a genderfluid pickpocket, Sal, who decides to audition for a position on the Queen’s Left Hand– essentially Her Majesty’s royal assassins. What Sal doesn’t know is they’re getting themself into a Hunger Games situation of sorts in which auditioners are expected to kill off their competition, prove themselves through a series of tests, and, y’know, not die in the process. The body count is pretty high already, and my Kindle says I’m only 39% through. I hesitate to call this a “fun” read exactly? (I mean, there’s been a LOT of death, blood, and stabbing going on…) BUT it’s definitely sucked me in and I am for sure enjoying the ride! Looking forward to sneaking in a few chapters during my lunch break today.

Happy Reading!
Becky Woodruff


Please welcome your 2019 Rainbow Book List Committee!

Posted by: peshling on: April 13, 2018

Alana Phelan (Chair)

Gemma Doyle

Zoe Fisher

Ms. Elizabeth Lippoldt

Jessica Pryde (Alternate)

Ms. Lynne Rhys

Talya Sokoll

Gregory S. Taylor

Kevin Washburn

Becky Woodruff

This year, we have a full roster of committee members and we’ve added something new: an alternate. When extenuating circumstances lead to a even number of committee members, the alternate creates the uneven number that makes voting a smoother process.

We have also added a second monthly post. In addition to what books we are considering, which will be posted around the first of the month, there will also be a post around the middle of each month by rotating members that will discuss a selection. These posts will be a reflection of the specific committee member and not the group as a whole.

Think something isn’t our on radar? You can always let us know by using the “Suggestions” link in the above navigation bar.