February is LGBT+ History Month and I want to share an exceptional book for teenagers (and also adults!) that guides you through the history of the LGBTQ+ community from ancient civilisations to modern day. Have PRIDE was written by Stella Caldwell in consultation with Sue Sanders and illustrated by Season of Victory. The book includes inspiring contributions from Dea Urovi, Ayo Babatope, Mupela Muba, Shelina, Alex Holdsworth, Ezra Lee, Mohammed Barber and Layton Williams.
Have PRIDE is split into seven chapters, and each page is bursting with colour, facts and energy. The book includes a variety of profiles, quotes, infographics and photographs of historic events across the world.
The historical events are discussed sensitively and openly, including the Stonewall riots, the AIDS crisis and equal marriage. Every page has interesting facts and graphics, from the timeline of persecution to the symbolism of the rainbow flag.
Each chapter includes profiles of famous LGBTQ+ figures from the time, from Anne Lister (aka Gentleman Jack) to Marielle Franco. It is shocking and heartbreaking to read about the brutality and persecution the community has endured. But it is also inspiring to see how the community has, and continues to, fight for equality.
Interspersed between profiles of prominent historical LGBTQ+ figures are profiles of young people today. Their words are so incredibly powerful and important for others to hear. Ayo Babatope, who identifies as queer says, “we can inspire people we don’t even know are watching.” and this book will certainly inspire many people!
The Chair of Schools OUT UK and founder of LGBT History Month, Sue Sanders, consulted on the book. She describes Have PRIDE as an introduction that can be used as a “jumping-off point to discover more”. I love the “Have you heard of?” boxes that appear throughout the book. They encourage the reader to find out more about LGBTQ+ figures. At the back of the book is a comprehensive glossary as well as a list of resources and websites to find out further information.
Have PRIDE has a poignant and beautiful harmony between facts about the history of the global LGBTQ+ movement, and the experiences of young people from the community today. Whilst highlighting the oppression and struggles the LGBTQ+ community has faced in its fight for equality, the book also celebrates PRIDE. I wish every secondary school and library had a copy of this informative, inclusive and inspirational book.
Published by Welbeck Publishing, 25 June 2020
I am very grateful to the publisher for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book. This voluntary review contains my honest opinion.