TRANS* & Nonbinary

Lending Library

Julian is a Mermaid

by Jessica Love (she/her)
Trans* & Nonbinary Lending Library -Julian is a Mermaid by Jessica Love (she/her) book cover

A Stonewall Book Award Winner-A glimpse of costumed mermaids leaves one boy flooded with wonder and ready to dazzle the world.

While riding the subway home from the pool with his abuela one day, Julián notices three women spectacularly dressed up. Their hair billows in brilliant hues, their dresses end in fishtails, and their joy fills the train car. When Julián gets home, daydreaming of the magic he’s seen, all he can think about is dressing up just like the ladies in his own fabulous mermaid costume. Full of heart, Jessica Love’s author-illustrator debut is a beautifully illustrated celebration of joyful, unedited self expression.

Book review exerpt; “The author, Jessica Love is a white woman who is married and has two children. She personally does not fit the culture of the characters in her book; however, she focuses on teaching the importance of personal expression, love, and acceptance. As a genderfluid person, I didn’t see this as a transgender book, but more of a about the freedom of gender expression. This book does a great job challenging the reader’s bias and the social norms around gender expression and identity.”
-Review by Chelena River for Reading Is Resistance

Content Warning: In this book about gender expression, the narrator uses he/him pronouns for a child assigned male at birth.   This may be a good point of discussion with your child. Use general, open ended questions to draw out their own experience. Ex. What did you think about Julian’s joy? What did you think about Julian’s pronouns?


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