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Children’s Book Publisher Responds to Gay Families in Picture Books

51u08yOgeJLMay 28, 2014- A children’s book publisher has responded to controversial emails that object to the portrayal of gay parents in picture books for children. Alexandra, the founder of Kindred Rainbow Publishing, has hit back at those who have objected to the first release from the publishing house, ‘The Gripper Slipper’, a book which follows the adventures of children Mary and Oliver as well as their parents – their two mums or their two dads, depending on the edition.

In an email exchange which saw the publisher encouraged to ‘let children be children’ and stop exposing them to the supposedly mature themes of gay marriage and same-sex parents, Alexandra asserted that the stories published by Kindred Rainbow are all aiming to promote and nurture equality from a young age. Prejudice is a learned trait, she says, and teaching children about acceptance and tolerance is crucial in this day and age.

Alexandra says, “’The Gripper Slipper’ is a book for children which reflects the incredibly diverse world they are growing up in. Children will encounter LGBT individuals as well as disabled people, ethnic minorities and disadvantaged individuals every day of their lives as they grow and evolve, and sending them a message of tolerance and acceptance can go a long way to promoting equality in future societies. Our stories do not try and encourage children to confront mature themes; rather, they act as a source of prejudice-free entertainment that also educates and informs.”

‘The Gripper Slipper’ is an exciting children’s book which, contrary to other LGBT themed picture books, does not focus on the gay parents as the topic of the story, however it is all about a hunt for a missing slipper. The footwear in question belongs to little Mary, and the book follows her as she, her brother Oliver and her parents set on a journey to restore the slipper to its rightful place – on Mary’s foot! There are two editions of the book – one in which Mary has two dads named John and Steve, and one where there are two mums, Amy and Julie. The paperback edition of the book has been a hit among parents everywhere trying to teach their children the meaning of equality and tolerance.

The messages haven’t been all negative for the publishing house. Kindred Rainbow is also receiving very positive communication about the company’s mission to promote equality in children’s literature, with LGBT parents thanking the publishing house for a publication that their children can relate to. After an email exchange, one individual, eventually came round to the more tolerant way of thinking, saying, “I really do wish you the very best in your new venture and I hope you will open some eyes in our society, because some of us are blind!”

For more information about Kindred Rainbow’s range of books, visit: www.kindredrainbow.com. Both editions of ‘The Gripper Slipper’ are available to be purchased from Amazon.

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