My Own Way

Celebrating Gender Freedom for Kids

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Pub Date 01 Mar 2022 | Archive Date 13 Jun 2023

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Small children are often asked to choose between a gendered binary–"boy" or "girl", "pink" or "blue". This colorful picture book smashes these stereotypes and encourages the reader to follow their own way!

"Girl or Boy?"
What brings you joy?
"Pink or blue?"
It’s up to you.

With vibrant illustrations and concise, poetic text, this powerful book teaches young children that there are no limits in what you can do and who you can be.  You are unique!

Translated from the original Portuguese by award-winning transgender poet Jay Hulme, My Own Way is an important, timely, and beautiful celebration of identity, difference, and respect.
Small children are often asked to choose between a gendered binary–"boy" or "girl", "pink" or "blue". This colorful picture book smashes these stereotypes and encourages the reader to follow their...

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9780711265868
PRICE $16.99 (USD)

Available on NetGalley

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Average rating from 26 members

Featured Reviews

My 7 yr old and I really enjoyed reading this book together. He thought the book was a great way of showing that you can be yourself. While the illustrations were on the simple side, the colors and vibrant nature were appealing. Great introductory book to the topics of gender identification and individuality for young readers.

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My Own Way is a short children’s picture book about the fluidity and possibility of gender identity. Kids are not often raised with the understanding of what gender actually means, and it can be complex, but this picture book gives a great way to show very young kids that “pink” and “blue” aren’t the only options, just because people are telling you it is. The art is beautiful and the simplicity is wonderful. I hope to have it on my future kids’ shelves someday.

Thank you to NetGalley and Quarto Publishing Group for providing me with an ARC of this title!

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This is a bright and colorful picture book that discusses gender, in a light handed way.

It asks if you want to be a boy or a girl, or both or neither.

With simple rhyming text like:

<blockquote><em>Boy or Gril
Doesn't cover everyone.
You might be both.
You might be none.

Your truth isn't hidden underneath your clothes

Originally written in Portuguese, this translation is very assessable, with easy concepts for children.

<em>Thanks to Netgalley for making this book available for an honest review.</em>

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*Special thanks to NetGallery and Wide Eyed Editions for the eARC of this book*

This little book is the perfect introduction for little ones about the wonderful adventure that is exploring their gender. First, they do not need to conform who the box they've been put in. Second, they get to explore what makes them happy. That's it. That's the whole message, and it's wonderful.

If I had been read this as a child, been given that permission to explore my gender and what makes me happy, I can only imagine how much happier and free I would have been. Children deserve to be themselves, not just free to like the toys or games that make them happy, being adventurous or into reading, etc, but able to be themselves in regards to their gender and exploration of that expression.

The illustrations and colours are so fun and colourful, and the simples shapes and easy prose make it a great book for all ages.

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My Own Way is a beautifully written children’s book that speaks to breaking out of gender norms. It is bright, colorful and engaging while simply explaining to the reader that you do not have to subscribe to gender stereotypes. Blue does not have to be for boys, hairstyles do not have to be labeled for certain genders, you get to decide what you like and who you are on your own. This is a perfect introduction into the topic of gender for young children.

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Thank you, Quarto Publishing, for the advance reading copy.

I do feel this picture book is a must now to introduce to kids both at home and at preschools.

The concept and the illustrations are basic. As much as learning ABC is basic, this book is basic too for the kids.

Basic gender education at a good start I say.

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Absolutely loved this children's book about not conforming to gender or gender stereotypes. First children's book I've seen (aimed at this young of an age) which also suggests that it's possible to not be a girl or a boy - but is possible to be neither. The illustrations are simple, bright and effective. I will be purchasing a hard copy for my daughter.

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This was beautiful in its simplicity. The colors and pictures were lively and attention grabbing. The message was also relevant and timely.

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I love the colourful minimalist illustrations of this book, and it is definitely a simple book to read to kids that might feel pressured to conform at a very young age. A lovely book that I would recommend to all parents.

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I love the intentions behind this book. Some may argue that it is too early for kids to know which gender they feel most comfortable with... and dammit, they should be allowed to explore and take their time to find themselves.
This book is apt to help parents and kids discuss their sexual identity more openly.
Great book.

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The publisher notes that this title offers a simple and inclusive introduction to the freedom in gender expression. And, yes, that is just what this cheerfully illustrated book offers. It opens up for discussion a topic that makes some adults anxious. The book is welcoming to all and will be helpful to many children and families.

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions are my own.

This title will be published on 01 Mar 2022.

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As children are given a voice at younger ages to tell what they feel their gender is or isn't, books like My Own Way can help teachers, therapists, and librarians guide their understanding of themselves. The book is colorful and cute, and tells about seeking out which feels right to you (boy, girl, both or none).

I appreciate the nod to diversity, but some of the characters were more cartooney and had blue or purple skin. I would have liked to see more realistic portrayals of people who are choosing their own way. However, the overall message of kindness and individuality was a good message and this will be a useful tool to children and adults.

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Book about children living their own way not bound by common constraints. Living without gender identity issues. This is definitely an interesting hypothesis and one I think should be applauded. It shows children doing what gives them joy., Left to their own devices, kids are always the little daredevils. Can find themselves in dangerous situations (hanging up side down on the top bar of swing).here and eating as much ice cream that they can possibly pack in a bowl are a couple of activities that are not a good idea left on their own. Cutting their own hair, not a good idea, however they will learn there are consequences for their actions and have to live with their will grow back over time. Boys practicing ballet, Simply marvelous. How will you dress? Miss matched? Does it really matter if that is what brings them joy. Thanks to #NetGalley, for allowing me to view early. In exchange for an honest review. Yes, I will be recommending this book. They are free to choose their own path.. the book is filled with brightly illustrated pictures full of activities. Children can read this. From an early age.

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At first, I was concerned with the either/or format of the story ("girl or boy") and didn't understand how it aligns with gender freedom... However, as you continue to read, they include both or none as well. It's a very simple story to begin introducing gender, gender-affirming language, and acceptance towards everyone to young children. The illustration style reminds me a bit of Todd Parr, as does the celebratory language. It would be a great addition to any early childhood library, especially for children who are enjoying the Todd Parr stories.

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*received for free from netgalley for honest review* very cool kids book, simple and easy to understand so you can read it with smaller children as well :)

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What a beautiful book this is. The message, the colors, the little faces and bodies, I loved them all. Teaching children to be who they are and following their own path is so important, and this book gives simple tips to help them do that. “Woman or man? Just be as kind as you can.”

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This is a great book as it shows it’s okay to not have labels. It also shows you can do anything you want. It is in fun rhyming and simple illustrations, but gets the message across. It’s okay for you to be who you are and do what you want but to be kind. Growing up is hard enough for children now to typecast them is adding to the problem. This book deals with that issue.

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My Own Way allows children and adults, that share the same sentiment, to learn how easy and freeing acceptance of others and of oneself can be. The illustrations are so refreshing and fun, inspiring for little children to see. It discusses in a very simple context gender identity, great for opening the door to more conversations about the topic of gender. Most importantly it's the kindness that the children will see in the illustrations and story, that won me over.

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My Own way is a non-fiction children’s book encouraging children to be who they were born to be and not who society thinks they ultimately should be based on what gender they were born as. The author uses kid-friendly pictures and color to illustrate and drive home this point to young kids at the ages of 3 to 6 years of age, Ideal for bedtime stories.

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My Own Way is stunningly illustrated and provides such a good foundation for young children in establishing an expansive, inclusive, and open minded idea of gender identity. The messages this book lays out are so incredibly important for children to hear often and early:

"Boy or girl? None or both. It's your heart that matters most. So if you're ready. Let's all say... I will follow my own way!"

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