GEC BEST BOOKS 2019

Welcome to GEC Best Books 2019, we’re glad you’re here. Compiled by our GEC Community of parents, teachers, authors (and kids!), here is our round up of the absolute best books out there for Smashing Stereotypes. We have grouped them into themes so you can easily find books to smash specific stereotypes but many of the books smash multiple stereotypes so have a good browse around. Happy reading and, as ever, please let us know if there is something we need to to add.

 
 

STEM STARS

Books which feature stars of science, technology, engineering, maths and other stereotype smashing careers.

Ada Twist scientist    Andrea Beaty
Rosie Revere Engineer    Andrea Beaty
Rad girl book    Sharita Manickam

Rad girl book

Sharita Manickam

Izzy Gizmo    Pip Jones

Izzy Gizmo

Pip Jones

 

“It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.” - Frederick douglass

Books which deal with feelings and kindness.

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The Bear Who Stared    Duncan Beedie

The Bear Who Stared

Duncan Beedie

Alfie Gives a Hand    Shirley Williams

Alfie Gives a Hand

Shirley Williams

A little bit brave    Nicola Kinnear

A little bit brave

Nicola Kinnear

The Storm Whale    Benji Davies

The Storm Whale

Benji Davies

The Lion Inside    Rachel Bright

The Lion Inside

Rachel Bright

 
Growing Good    Bernard Ashley

Growing Good

Bernard Ashley

Dave the Lonely Monster    Anna Kemp and Sara Ogilvie

Dave the Lonely Monster

Anna Kemp and Sara Ogilvie

Good Night, Good Knight    Shelley Moore Thomas

Good Night, Good Knight

Shelley Moore Thomas

The Lumberjack's beard    Duncan Beedie
 
Jabari Jumps    Gaia Cornwall

Jabari Jumps

Gaia Cornwall

The Fox and the Star    Coralie Bickford-Smith

The Fox and the Star

Coralie Bickford-Smith

Flare    Kallie George

Flare

Kallie George

Kind    Alison Green

Kind

Alison Green

Captain Starfish    Davina Bell

Captain Starfish

Davina Bell

 
Cleversticks    B. Ashley

Cleversticks

B. Ashley

Charley's First Night    Helen Oxenbury

Charley's First Night

Helen Oxenbury

Ruby's Worry    Tom Percival

Ruby's Worry

Tom Percival

Zen Shorts    Jon J Muth

Zen Shorts

Jon J Muth

A Stone for Sascha    Aaron Becker

A Stone for Sascha

Aaron Becker

not your average royalty

Books with princesses (and other royalty!) who are smashing stereotypes.

Paperbag Princess    Robert Munsch

Paperbag Princess

Robert Munsch

My Princess Boy    Cheryl Davis

My Princess Boy

Cheryl Davis

Princess BMX    Marie Basting

Princess BMX

Marie Basting

Interstellar Cinderella    Deborah Underwood

Interstellar Cinderella

Deborah Underwood

The Tough Princess    Martin Waddel

The Tough Princess

Martin Waddel

 
The Little Prince    Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The Little Prince

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Princess Swashbuckle    Hollie Hughes
You Can't Eat a Princess    Gillian Rogers & Sarah McIntyre

You Can't Eat a Princess

Gillian Rogers & Sarah McIntyre

"dressing is an art." —John Galliano

Books which look at clothing as a way of smashing stereotypes.

Jacob's New Dress    Sarah Hoffman

Jacob's New Dress

Sarah Hoffman

What Wesley Wore    Samuel Langley-Swain

What Wesley Wore

Samuel Langley-Swain

Coco chanel    Isabel Sanchez Vegara

Coco chanel

Isabel Sanchez Vegara

 
Julian is a Mermaid    Jessica Love
Dress Like a Girl    Patricia Toht

Dress Like a Girl

Patricia Toht

Annie's Plaid Shirt    Stacy B Davids

Annie's Plaid Shirt

Stacy B Davids

The boy in the dress    David Walliams

The boy in the dress

David Walliams

Sparkle Boy    Leslea Newman and Maria Mola

Sparkle Boy

Leslea Newman and Maria Mola

Bill's new frock    Anne Fine

“The things that make me different are the things that make me.” —Winnie-the-Pooh

Books which deal with being different.

Bumblebear    Nadia Shireen

Bumblebear

Nadia Shireen

The Different Dragon    Jennifer Bryan

The Different Dragon

Jennifer Bryan

Something Else    Kathryn Cave

Something Else

Kathryn Cave

Giraffes Can't Dance    Giles Andreae
Odd Dog Out    Rob Biddoplh

Odd Dog Out

Rob Biddoplh

 

There is no one alive who is Youer than You.” ―Dr. Seuss

Books which deal with inclusion, identity, gender or which directly address gender stereotypes.

A Boy Like You    Frank Murphy

A Boy Like You

Frank Murphy

The Day You Begin    Jacqueline Woodson

The Day You Begin

Jacqueline Woodson

Pink is for boys    Eda Kaban
Sugar and Snails    Sarah Tsiang

Sugar and Snails

Sarah Tsiang

Beautiful    Joanne Lew-Vriethoff and Stacy McAnulty

Beautiful

Joanne Lew-Vriethoff and Stacy McAnulty

Free to Be Incredible Me    Joelle-Elizabeth Retener

Free to Be Incredible Me

Joelle-Elizabeth Retener

 
My big shouting day    Rebecca Patterson

My big shouting day

Rebecca Patterson

Pearl Power    Mel Elliott

Pearl Power

Mel Elliott

All Are Welcome    Alexandra Penfold

All Are Welcome

Alexandra Penfold

Who am I? I am me!    Jayneen Sanders

Who am I? I am me!

Jayneen Sanders

“I got my own back.” - maya angelou

Books with females taking the lead.

The Perfect Rainy Day    Annahita de la Mare

The Perfect Rainy Day

Annahita de la Mare

The Start of Something Big    Annahita de la Mare

The Start of Something Big

Annahita de la Mare

Billy and the Beast    Nadia Shireen

Billy and the Beast

Nadia Shireen

Winnie the Witch    Valerie Thomas

Winnie the Witch

Valerie Thomas

Madeline's Rescue    Ludwig Bemelmans

Madeline's Rescue

Ludwig Bemelmans

Betty and the Yeti    Ella Burfoot

Betty and the Yeti

Ella Burfoot

 
How to find gold    Viv Schwarz

How to find gold

Viv Schwarz

Alison Hubble    Allan Ahlberg

Alison Hubble

Allan Ahlberg

Mango and Bambang    Polly Faber
Anna Hibiscus    Atinuke
Spinderella    Julia Donaldson

Spinderella

Julia Donaldson

Katie Series    James Mayhew

Katie Series

James Mayhew

 
 
The Restless Girls    Jessie Burton

The Restless Girls

Jessie Burton

Knights and Bikes    Gabrielle Kent

Knights and Bikes

Gabrielle Kent

Flo    Kyo Maclear

Flo

Kyo Maclear

Natsumi    Susan Lendroth

Natsumi

Susan Lendroth

 
Room on the Broom    Julia Donaldson

Room on the Broom

Julia Donaldson

The Girls    Lauren Ace

The Girls

Lauren Ace

Imani's Moon    Janay Brown-Wood

Imani's Moon

Janay Brown-Wood

Lucia the Luchadora    Cynthia Leonor Garza

Lucia the Luchadora

Cynthia Leonor Garza

“Do not fear failure but rather fear not trying.” ― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

Factual books about inspiring people who made a difference.

 

“I don’t personally trust any revolution where love is not allowed” - Maya Angelou

Books which are open up conversations about, or which deal directly with LGBT+ topics.

King & King    Linda De Haan and Stern Nijland

King & King

Linda De Haan and Stern Nijland

Donovan's big day    Leslea Newman

Donovan's big day

Leslea Newman

In our Mothers’ House    Patricia Polacco

In our Mothers’ House

Patricia Polacco

Love makes a family    Sophie Beer
 
Mummy, Mama and Me    Leslea Newman

Mummy, Mama and Me

Leslea Newman

Daddy, Papa and Me    Leslea Newman

Daddy, Papa and Me

Leslea Newman

And Tango Makes Three    Justin Richardson

And Tango Makes Three

Justin Richardson

Antonio's Card    Rigoberto Gonzalez

Antonio's Card

Rigoberto Gonzalez

 

my body, my rules.

Books which deal with consent, bodies and sex.

Sex is a Funny Word    Cory Silverberg

Sex is a Funny Word

Cory Silverberg

Miles is the Boss of his Body    Samantha Kurtzman-Counte

Miles is the Boss of his Body

Samantha Kurtzman-Counte

No Means No    Jayneen Sanders

No Means No

Jayneen Sanders

Don't Touch my Hair    Sharee Miller

Don't Touch my Hair

Sharee Miller

My Body! What I Say Goes!    Jayneen Sanders
C is for Consent    Eleanor Morrison

C is for Consent

Eleanor Morrison

“I am beautiful” - tan to tamarind

Books which star characters of varied skin tones, heritages and religions.

Under My Hijab    MS Hena Khan

Under My Hijab

MS Hena Khan

Imani's Moon    Janay Brown-Wood

Imani's Moon

Janay Brown-Wood

High Rise Mystery    Sharna Jackson

High Rise Mystery

Sharna Jackson

Planet Omar    Zanib Mian

Planet Omar

Zanib Mian

 
Sweetest Kulu    Celine Kalluk and Alexandria Neonakis

Sweetest Kulu

Celine Kalluk and Alexandria Neonakis

The US vs Jackie Robinson    Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

The US vs Jackie Robinson

Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen

I am loved    Nikki Giovanni

I am loved

Nikki Giovanni

 

it’s a small world

Books that reflect life around the world and how we can look after it.

Rickshaw Girl    Mitali Perkins

Rickshaw Girl

Mitali Perkins

Coconut kind of day    Lynn Joseph
Tatterhood and Other Tales    Ethel Johnston Phelps

Tatterhood and Other Tales

Ethel Johnston Phelps

Lucia the Luchadora    Cynthia Leonor Garza

Lucia the Luchadora

Cynthia Leonor Garza

The Colour of Home    Mary Hoffman

The Colour of Home

Mary Hoffman

 
 
 

“Family is a life jacket in the stormy sea of life.” - J.K. Rowling

Books which are about all different kinds of families.

Two is Enough    Janna Matthies

Two is Enough

Janna Matthies

All About Families    Felicity Brooks

All About Families

Felicity Brooks

This Is How We Do It    Matt Lamothe
Love makes a family    Sophie Beer
#BAME #DiverseFamilies #HowOthersLive

#BAME #DiverseFamilies #HowOthersLive

 

“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” – Frederick Douglass

Stereotype smashing books which are perfect for toddlers and young children.

C is for Consent    Eleanor Morrison

C is for Consent

Eleanor Morrison

ABC Yoga    Chrstiane Engel

ABC Yoga

Chrstiane Engel

One Smiling Grandma    Ann Marie Linden

One Smiling Grandma

Ann Marie Linden

Feminism is for Boys    Elizabeth Rhodes

Feminism is for Boys

Elizabeth Rhodes

Bumblebear    Nadia Shireen

Bumblebear

Nadia Shireen

 
Sweetest Kulu    Celine Kalluk and Alexandria Neonakis

Sweetest Kulu

Celine Kalluk and Alexandria Neonakis

Counting on Community    Innosanto Nagara

Counting on Community

Innosanto Nagara

The Family Book    Todd Parr
A is for Activist    Innosanto Nagara

A is for Activist

Innosanto Nagara

“Books are a uniquely portable magic.” – Stephen King

Books for independent readers (7+) and older children and young adults.

Planet Omar    Zanib Mian

Planet Omar

Zanib Mian

Rickshaw Girl    Mitali Perkins

Rickshaw Girl

Mitali Perkins

The Forest Wife Trilogy    Theresa Tomlinson

The Forest Wife Trilogy

Theresa Tomlinson

High Rise Mystery    Sharna Jackson

High Rise Mystery

Sharna Jackson

We are displaced    Malala Yousafzai

We are displaced

Malala Yousafzai

Song of the Dolphin Boy    Elizabeth Laird
 
No Fixed Address    Susin Nielsen

No Fixed Address

Susin Nielsen

The Climbers    Ali Standish

The Climbers

Ali Standish

My Name is Sangoel    Karen Lynn Williams

My Name is Sangoel

Karen Lynn Williams

Knights and bikes    Gabrielle Kent

Knights and bikes

Gabrielle Kent

 
George    Alex Gino

George

Alex Gino

Spinning    Tillie Walden

Spinning

Tillie Walden

If I was your girl    Meredith Russo

If I was your girl

Meredith Russo

Bill's new frock    Anne Fine
Boys who made a difference    Michelle Roehm McCann

Boys who made a difference

Michelle Roehm McCann

The boy in the dress    David Walliams

The boy in the dress

David Walliams

 

factual BOOKS FOR ADULTS

 
 
The Gender Agenda    Ros Ball and James Millar

The Gender Agenda

Ros Ball and James Millar

The Gender Games    Juno Dawson

The Gender Games

Juno Dawson

Delusions of gender    Cordelia Fine

Delusions of gender

Cordelia Fine

Dear Ijeawele    Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Dear Ijeawele

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

 
The Female Eunuch    Germaine Greer

The Female Eunuch

Germaine Greer

Delta of Venus    Anais Nin
Inferior    Angela Saini

Inferior

Angela Saini

 

Fiction books for adults

The Power    Naomi Alderman

The Power

Naomi Alderman

A Suitable Boy    Vikram Seth

A Suitable Boy

Vikram Seth

Strange the Dreamer    Laini Taylor
The Unit    Ninni Holmqvist

The Unit

Ninni Holmqvist

Americanah    Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Americanah

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Circe    Madeline Miller

Circe

Madeline Miller

GET PRACTICAL: READING and #SmashingStereotypes

How do you help your child understand book at home, or how does your child carer or school support reading through activities, lessons, the (local) library, playtimes, clubs to promote diversity and #SmashingStereotypes - with a broad and balanced offer? 

Of course, you can use the list above to help stock your shelves but you may want more.

We are thrilled that the awesome legend that is our Graham Andre (the brilliant primary school teacher of the BBC BAFTA-nominated No More Boys and Girls) has written a series of reading activities with some of the books listed above. He will help you go through the books - page by page - to guide you through a reading journey with your young people. There are also activities in the packs to help you get practical!

You can access the FREE resources here to accompany our GECBestBooks list - with classroom and/or home activities to get your #SmashingStereotypes.

These include ‘My Princess Boy’ by Cheryl Kilodavis, ‘Pearl Power’ by Mel Elliott, and The Boy Who Lost his Bumble by Trudi Esberger.

If you enjoyed this list, maybe you’d consider donating a couple of pounds to help us make some free gender equal school resources (if you’re feeling generous, please click below).