Pink, Blue and You: my new book is in stores today!

My new book is in stores today! Let’s teach our kids that their gender shouldn’t define who they are, what they like and who they love. Buy it here!

Here’s a starred review from the School Library Journal:

“In her signature style, Gravel (What Is a Refugee? and others) and Blais provide an accessible introduction to gender and gender stereotypes. Beginning with smart, open-ended questions, the authors challenge readers to think about gender stereotypes, why they exist, and if they are true or fair. The book progresses to an overview of sex versus gender, complete with helpful visual aids, an exploration of pronouns, and ultimately, a few examples of how gender is treated in different communities. At each step, the authors ask readers what they think and how they feel. This engagement, coupled with the accessible presentation of the material, makes for an excellent resource. The folks depicted throughout vary in appearance, and include many skin tones, ages, and family structures. A few folks wear hijabs, and two others use wheelchairs. Gravel’s illustrative style is wildly appealing, and the comic-style presentation helps to endear the book to readers.

VERDICT: Thoughtful, engaging, and visually bright, this is an excellent addition to any library serving preschool and early elementary ages.”

The Worst Book Ever is in bookstores today!

This terrible book is available in bookstores today! Don’t buy it. It’s a total waste of money.

The Quill and Quire’s review:

Elise Gravel’s wildly creative new picture book purports to have no imagination at all. Called The Worst Book Ever, it’s a fairy-tale story of a prince and princess who lead exceptionally boring lives until one day a monster arrives and the prince must save the princess. 

A plot like this is shockingly retrograde. That’s why there are three bonus characters – a spider, a blob, and a star-like creature – who live outside of the story and are reading and commenting on it as it progresses. Like Statler and Waldorf or the robot characters from Mystery Science Theater 3000, they provide biting humour and judgment, calling out the off-putting title, the fact that “Prinse” and “Prinsess” are continually spelled wrong, and how “ugly” the illustrations are. It’s an early lesson in meta-narratives for young readers – and it’s a riot for the whole family.

The book is the perfect balance of fun and big themes hidden under more fun. Gravel is loyal to her fan base, cramming in plenty of bodily function humour, while the voice-of-reason characters remind kids that a book should be more than just boogers and farts. These astute critics also point out the story’s sexism, lack of diversity, gratuitous violence, and use of clichés – making this a surprisingly effective classroom tool for what to include in a book report.

The illustrations are purposefully simplistic and ill-proportioned – but still jokey and weird enough to amuse. And there are visual gags for older readers, including a cover sticker that proudly states “Winner of Zero Book Awards.”

There are very few children’s books that are both laugh-out-loud funny and completely on-point and undidactic in their teachable moments. Gravel has nailed this – and made it look easy.

Olga explains the scientific method: free printable

Here’s another free printable I made to explain the scientific method to kids. This mini-poster is for personal and classroom use (no commercial use allowed). Parents and teachers, you can find a higher-res to print for your students or for home HERE.

For those who don’t know who Olga is, you can find out more about this quirky scientist girl in this book: 

To see my other free posters, visit my boutique and click on “free printable stuff”.

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