Cover Image: ABC of Gender Identity

ABC of Gender Identity

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Member Reviews

"ABC of Gender Identity" by Devika Dalal is an inclusive and intersectional book about gender identity presented in a simple ABC style. The artwork is disappointingly simple.
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I want to give this book 5 stars just for existing. Too many people think that children are "too young" to be exposed to gender identities/sexuality or they think it will "confuse " them. These people are just being low key homophobic in my honest opinion. My daughter is 6. We recently had neighbors move in whom are a committed lesbian couple with numerous children, one of whom is becoming close with my daughter. They are a great family and I've come to consider them friends. When my daughter asked why her friend had two mommies and no daddy I explained how different families could be. She asked if we could get another mommy too since her friends mommy always gives them lollypops. That's it. No big deal. Zero confusion.

I think we underestimate children. It's never too early to instill being respectful and this books helps with that. It not only explains many different identities and how to politely refer to them, but it also gives many easy to understand explanations. Later on if my child struggles with their own identity, they will know they are not alone. They will know there are terms and people who identify the same. They will also know they are loved because I have made that clear from the very day they were born. I would love them no matter what.

I do think the age range on this book is a bit generous. My 6 year old would not have a great understanding reading this. I would put the age range starting about age 8. It may be younger or older depending on your childs maturity level for their age. I also disagree with one of the definitions. Queer as I have seen it is majorly used as an all encompassing word for the LGBTQ+ community. "Queer Community" includes everyone, not just a single group. This may be phrasing that has changed since this books debut.

At the end of the book there is also parental advice on how to bring this book up to them or how to read it to a younger crowd. It gives examples and ideas which could be helpful to a parent who they themselves are learning. Knowledge is power, and the fact that there are books out there to help teach others simple terms needed to respect people who identify different from them is something I will take as a positive sign for all
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A lovely, colourful book with very clear explanations and definitions of the different genders. It's very thorough and I've learned a lot! It also includes a guide for adults on talking about gender with their children. I will be recommending this book for purchase in our library!
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I am having my first child this summer and am looking for more diverse children's books and books educating on LGBTQIA+ topics. I would say if you are looking for a book to start a conversation about or educate you child about gender and gender identity, then this is not it. Here are the main issues I have with the book:

The art does not really add much to the information - it's just some kids (albeit liked the diversity) and different colored highlights here and there on the pages. With a picture book for kids I expect the art to show more of the info/tell more of the story than the actual text. That was certainly not the case here.

The ABC format of the book feels very forced. With a topic this complex and important I think it would have been better to focus on the most important concepts of group terms in a different way to make it all more understandable. The need to find a term for each letter of the alphabet didn't do the book any favors I think.

Some of the terms seem outdated ('gender reassignment' for example). And I do not understand why the word 'queer' was included (other than that the author probably couldn't find another term starting with 'q' - see my point above). 'Queer' was a slur that has been reclaimed by some in the LGBTQIA+ community and is slowly changing in connotation because of it. I would still advise to use the term sparingly and with its history in mind. And its definition here was narrow and incorrect.

The text seems much too complicated for young children. I don't see how this can really support a talk about gender and gender identity with them. It seems more like a short info brochure for parents about the topic that lets them figure out the rest, which makes the book somewhat pointless.

I'm so sad to say I wouldn't buy or recommend this to anyone, really, because the topic is so, so important!

ARC kindly provided vis NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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Unfortunately I don't think this book was very successful.  It is very simple, with a one sentence definition and simple clip art style figure for each letter.  There were many terms that I had never heard of, even as a member of the LGBTQ community myself.  With so little information given in the book, I had to search online for more details.  I understand it was simplified to share with children, but I think a more detailed glossary at the end at least would have been helpful.
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I read this with my seven year old daughter. She enjoyed the color, but when we came across a concept that wasn't entirely clear there was no further explanation. This is fine if you want to put in research for so many little known concepts just for storytime, but if you are wanting to read something that breaks big ideas down into easy explanations this book Is not for you. Definitely not something to read if you were aiming to learn together.
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The picture book of "ABC of gender identity" was a perfect introduction for children ages 7+. This book was very minimalistic but it caters to children with the very bright colors and cute 🥰 little characters. The conversation about gender identity is typically more difficult for adults than children. Unlike children who are a clean slate adults have set ideas 💡 and beliefs. 

One of the common complaints about this book was the lack of information. I think it has just enough to keep a child’s attention and enough context for adults to do their research once they read it before they read it to their child. 

I love that this is so available and I hope to read more from this author. Children need to know these things and learn it at home. 

As someone who has a son,I would definitely read this to him. I would recommend this to other parents as well. 

Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC !!! I am leaving this review voluntarily and all thoughts are my own.
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I love that the imagery in the book is diverse. I had some hope this book would be a useful tool. Instead, I'm left feeling underwhelmed and rather confused. 

I would expect the normal definitions to be kid-ified and made easy to understand, but these definitions used words that seem too big and technical for the target age group. Using these big words is a quick way to lose a kid's interest and/or just confuse them more.

Also, why is the term "queer" in this book and why does it have the same definition as "transgender"?

Overall, I'm unimpressed and rather upset with the way this book lays out these terms.
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This book is utterly ridiculous nonsense. I actually thought it was a joke when I started reading it. There are outdated and inappropriate terms (gender reassignment?) and some that seem downright made up or copied from a Reddit diatribe. The same definition is used more than once and many are almost identical.  The “babyish” illustrations don’t match the tone of the book, and it’s also confused as to what it wants its audience to be. Umm ... what does “body type” have to do with gender identity? The “Guide for Adults” at the end is patronizing and completely unoriginal... the author may as well have said, “First, open the book. Then, read the page on the left, followed by the page on the right.”
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This is a great resource to introduce children to discussions of gender identities, and will more likely than not, also introduce many older people to the concepts too
It consists of the name of the identity with a small definition - i think this is good to spark discussion and introduce concepts to kids. at the end there is a small text to help parents/caretakers in navigating these discussions, which will also be very useful
it is a very simple book, both in concept and illustrations, but taking into account the aim and target of it, i find it appropriate. i think a follow-up/sequel would be welcome

thank you to netgally and the publisher for an eARC
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Thank you, Netgalley, for the opportunity to read an arc version of this book!

While scrolling through the children’s nonfiction section, this book caught my eye. I didn’t learn about pronouns in an intentional way until late in high school, and that just isn’t acceptable given how much more we know now. As a high school teacher, I know that some of my students have not been exposed to many ideas about gender identity, and I have a responsibility to remedy this. I also have two nephews, and I would like them to grow up with the greatest understanding of themselves and those around them as possible. 

For a verrryyy young audience, this book is appropriate, but I wish that the illustrations had been more detailed and less like clipart. There is nothing inherently wrong with the images, but in order to bring this book to a middle grade or high school audience, the images needed more refinement and could have added to each definition/description, rather than detracting. 

With the terms chosen, I do think this is a strong place to start. There were terms that have been around for a while and are widely recognized (cisgender, gender fluid) and others that are more newly recognized (endogender, horogender, juxera). Again, this book is a fantastic place to start, but even for young children, I would want more cultural context, imagery, and narrative.
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I've read other books that are very similar to this one, and this is in the same vein. I loved how it covered things in a way that kids can understand. I did notice a notation on a few pages - [AQ] - that I'm not sure will be kept in the final copy, but otherwise well written.
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*Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for providing access to this book in exchange for an honest review.*

A cute book, but some of the information is incorrect so I can’t recommend this book to anyone or give it more than a single star. For example, the bigender definition in this book only mentioned identifying as male and female at the same time, rather than including nonbinary genders in this definition. Another example is the word queer. Not everyone who meets the definition in this book is comfortable using this term, and not everyone who uses this term meets the definition in this book. Anyone in the LGBTQ+ community might identify as queer, regardless of their gender identity. It is so so so frustrating to see new books about gender identity still making these mistakes.
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A simple and clear introduction to the ABCs of gender for younger children. And personally speaking, adults. I learnt a lot about the different terms used in the LGBTQIA community wrt gender. Some were terms that I had never come across before.

Thank you to the authors for educating children as well as adults with this easy guide to gender, 
The only con was that the illustrations, while colourful, were not very attractive. 

Overall, a really nice book to spread awareness and a good starting point for adults to talk to their children about gender.
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I have often wondered what different gender terms mean.  Some are older and you know right away or are easy to assess, others seem to be used interchangeably, but do have solid meanings, and others are brand new to this reader, like Xirl/Xoy, or Kynigender.  This book was a wonderful first step in understanding some of these.  There is something for everyone to learn.
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I read an advanced copy courtesy of NetGalley. It's a simplistic explanation of 26 different gender identities. As someone who is trying to better understand marginalized people, it's a great introduction to lesser known genders. There's an excellent explanation of how better to use the book to explore and explain with your child.
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This was a quick and easy conversation starter on gender identity. I appreciated the bold colors and brief definitions. As a parent I am always looking for ways to introduce my daughter to the realities of life including respecting gender and this book gave me some new language to share with her. 

I intend to use this as a platform and guide in our discussions but also to use this as a starting point to finding more sources on some of the newer terms that I was not as familiar with.
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I think the intention of this book is good but I think it would more be a book for older children or adults rather than younger chuldren. It has cute drawings with a cute alphabet concept but the descriptions are quite simplistic and not necessarily relevant to right now which can be hard when the terminology is constantly changing.
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WOW! I learned so much while I read this to my little one. This helps open up conversations and builds vocabulary for future conversations about gender identity. I am so impressed with the thoroughness of the concepts.
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Though short, I learned a lot from the ABC of Gender Identity book. I was unaware there were so many. I also learned that some identities that I thought I knew the meaning of were actually incorrect. I think this would be a great book for kids and adults alike.
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