Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress by Christine Baldacchino, illustrated by Isabelle Malenfant

This is an important book about gender. Sensitively told, the boy (Morris) at the heart of the story, loves wearing the tangerine dress in his classroom’s dress up box. It fills his imagination with vivid images of tigers, the Sun and his mum’s beautiful flowing red hair.

Morris is teased by the other children, who do not accept him, they cannot see past the non-conforming boy in a tangerine dress.

However, Morris is far more than that. Morris is a painter, a problem solver and an astronaut. Wearing the dress is just one of the many things he enjoys doing.

The book feels like an honest account of Morris’ story. Isabelle Malenfant’s illustrations do a marvellous job of portraying the spectrum of emotions felt by both Morris and the other children in his class.

The picture book form seems to be getting better and better, tackling challenging issues and confronting intolerance.

I tip my hat to the creators and publisher of this wonderful book.

Published by Groundwood Books

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