A pleasant look at the rainbow flag.
Tailor-made for LGBTQ–pride storytimes, this self-described “first book of pride” looks at the six-color rainbow flag and dissects the meaning behind each color. Genhart’s text is set primarily in single sentences across each double-page spread, with a longer summation on the final page. Fans of Todd Parr’s books will find the formatting (if not the colors) familiar. Like Parr’s work, the text is simple, with one or two multisyllabic words per page, which nicely allows for breakaway moments to “clap out” syllables or have a discussion about a reach word. Passchier’s illustrations—bright, serviceable, and most likely digital—capture a range of skin tones and ethnicities but, sadly, not a range of ages among adults depicted. LGBTQ grandparents, for instance, won’t find themselves, as all the characters appear as either children or young caregivers. The illustrations adequately enhance the text throughout, although the image for violet’s representation of “spirit” (a smiling child finger painting in a purple room) may have adult readers pausing to make the connection. A page of international pride further along in the book is lovely but aspirational, as some of the suggested nations (Egypt, for example) still struggle with LGBTQ acceptance compared to Western Europe and the United States.
A welcome addition to rainbow bookshelves and a potential workhorse in June. (Picture book. 2-5)