Kilodavis, C., & DeSimone, S. (2011). My princess boy: A mom’s story about a young boy who loves to dress up. New York, NY: Aladdin.
This is a different choice for this list as it is a picture book for ages 3-8 putting it just barely at the bottom of the tween range that said I would argue that it could be used with kids up to age 10 or 11 basically anyone still in elementary school. Further this book deals with a sensitive subject matter the main character the princess boy loves sparkles and dresses even though this causes some people to laugh at him and his family for allowing him to dress how he likes. The story talks about acceptance and being a true friend who supports people for who they are rather than make fun of them for how they dress. This is an important message as bullying is becoming increasingly problematic these days with bullies having more opportunity than ever to harass their victims through social media. Due to the books clear message and simple format I believe it could be a good resource for tweens who are less familiar with the idea of gender non-conforming and transgender kids. This can be a non-threatening way to broach the subject in more conservative communities or for kids who are confused about their own identity. The short picture book format also allows readers to quickly read it in the library and not have to check it out if they are afraid of being judged or getting trouble with their parents. The artwork for this book is very bright and colorful but avoids looking babyish. Most of the artwork is of the princess boy in various outfits playing and having fun. The one odd thing about the artwork is that the people do not have faces but this may actually help with it’s having more appeal to older readers who appreciate the visual appeal of this more abstract style. This would be a great book to include in anti-bullying book lists or displays as well as LGBT book lists and displays. While some librarians may be reluctant to include this book due to the potential for challenges to the book it is a true story and shelved in the non fiction section. This has two benefits first parents and young children are less likely to accidentally come across it while looking for picture books leading to less potential for complaints. More importantly it will then be shelved next to more in depth books on the topic so it can serve as a gateway book for the topic allowing readers more ability to educate themselves at their own pace. This could also offer a better starting place for readers who arrive in that section and find themselves intimidated by the other books.