Pride, The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag – PPBF

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Title: Pride, The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag

Author: Rob Sanders

Illustrator: Steven Salerno

Publisher: Random House, April 2018

Ages: 5-9

Themes: gay pride, Harvey Milk, the rainbow flag, lgbtqia+, strength, leadership, change, power, control, politics and differing opinions, tolerance

Genre: biography


You have to give them hope.
Hope for a better world. Hope for a better tomorrow…

Harvey Milk was an ordinary man, but had an extraordinary dream.
That dream would change history.


In this deeply moving and empowering true story, we trace the life of the Gay Pride Flag, from its beginnings in 1978 with social activist Harvey Milk and designer Gilbert Baker to its spanning of the globe and its role in today’s world. 

Why I like this book:

Pride is a much needed picture book biography of a very significant slice of queer history. The narrative is both entertaining and informative, and the illustrations transport us vividly back onto the streets of San Francisco during this turbulent and momentous time. The textual details are selected and presented in a way that makes the story accessible to even very young readers, which will make it a terrific classroom read/discussion across many grades. Sanders manages to capture the struggle, rights and hope of this segment of the US community with skill, and I appreciate how he makes the history global and present.

I am well acquainted with the story of Harvey Milk but knew much less about the creation of the pride flag. I continue to be astounded by what I learn through NF picture books. As with any biography about women and men who went against the status quo, this book can be used to teach about strength, leadership, change, power, control, sacrifice and tolerance. This is a must have for elementary classrooms and libraries, filling a hole on our history shelves for this age group. Looks like I am most definitely donating my review copy to our school library!


In his back matter, Sanders has included terrific classroom resources in: biographical notes on the flag, Harvey Milk and Gilbert Baker; a Harvey Milk Timeline; a rainbow flag timeline; further reading (websites, books and a podcast). 

GLSEN has some great lgbtq inclusive lesson plans for different age groups.

Each week a group of bloggers reviews picture books we feel would make great educational reads. To help teachers, caregivers and parents, we have included resources and/or activities with each of our reviews. A complete list of the thousands of books we have reviewed can be found sorted alphabetically and by topics, here on Susanna Leonard Hill’s website.


This entry was posted in Book recommendation, children's books, Children's literature, Diverse Children's Books, LGBTQIA, Perfect Picture Book Friday and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Pride, The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag – PPBF

  1. What a beautiful cover. I didn’t know the history of the rainbow flag. I love seeing books for children that focus on tolerance, gay pride, power and positive change.

  2. Looking forward to reading this one! Thanks for the reminder!

  3. I never knew about this coloured flag. Thank you for sharing it. I love how I learn something new every time with PPBF selections. Lovely review Joanna.

  4. I knew about Milk – but hadn’t put his name to the rainbow flag. We need this book! Thanks for sharing it.

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