A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Explains what it means to be transgender, and what it is like for a young child to transition and share their feelings with family and friends. Shows the mindfulness practice of breathing in and out before counting down from five.
You know who you are, and you know better than anyone else. It's important to embrace differences and show support for those you care about. It's important to love yourself. Transgender children can shine brightly.
Positive Role Models
Calvin is a positive role model for recognizing that he wants to be seen for who he truly is, and sharing this with his loved ones. He displays courage and clear communication. Calvin's parents, grandparents, brother, classmates, and teachers are also positive role models because they display compassion for him.
There are a lot of diverse representations in the book. Main character Calvin is biracial (Black and White). Other characters are different ages, races, genders and religions, and physical abilities. The book also includes themes of friendship, self-love, and acceptance.
Did we miss something on diversity? Suggest an update.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Calvin is a bold picture book from husband-and-wife team JR and Vanessa Ford, who are LGBTQ+ advocates. Inspired by their transgender son's story, the book explores the story of young Calvin, who introduces himself as a boy to his family and friends for the first time. The book defines what it means to be transgender and explores various aspects of transitioning for a young child. The characters are very diverse in religion, skin tone, race, physical abilities, and gender. Themes of the book include friendship, self-love, advocating for what you need, and acceptance.
Is It Any Good?
This is a daring picture book that celebrates transgender children and inclusivity. Calvin will resonate with trans children, as well as their family members and friends. The authors were inspired to write a story that can help caregivers and educators navigate a tricky subject. The topic is approached in a developmentally appropriate manner. Kayla Harren, illustrator of award-winning picture books, created warm, softly colored images that help draw in readers and showcase the characters' emotions. The story is heartwarming, timely, and affirming at a moment when many people reject members of the trans community.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.