Every night young Bailey dreams about dresses, one on each step of an endless staircase, each dress more beautiful than the last. But when she tells her mother, and father, and brother about the dresses, and asks for help in making them, they scold her, saying “Dresses aren’t for boys.” Bailey explains that she doesn’t feel like a boy, but they each respond that she is and “that’s that!” Finally Bailey finds a friend who is also fascinated with dresses and they begin to create some together.
This is the first book depicting the experience of a child who is transgendered, or at least gender-variant. The experiences of the child, and the initial reactions of family members are accurate and realistic, as is the importance of finding an understanding friend. The illustrations are child-friendly and colorful. The story is simple and appropriate for children as young as three or four, inviting discussion between parent and child. Such books are sorely needed, and this one is a real success.