Kid Canon’s New Dress (Plus Giveaway)

Having had what you might call a “pink boy” when he was small (i.e. long hair, love of fairies, disinterest in vehicles and at times the penchant to wear a dress), I wish that Jacob’s New Dress had graced my bookshelf all those years ago.

The authors, Ian and Sarah Hoffman, hadn’t written it yet, though.

At heart, Jacob’s New Dress is less a “boys can wear dress” book than a “be proud of who you are” book. What’s heartening is not the sartorial style nor the fact that Jacob really does not question his choices, it’s that the important people in Jacob’s life—his friends, his teacher, and his parents—rally around him, Jacob and who he is.

Jacob’s parents don’t get there instantly. Not to spoiler the plot, you can’t help but smile when his mom comes through:

“There are all kinds of ways to be a boy,” she said. “Right?”


The plot turns us gently—and a little bit not so gently—here and the illustrations by Chris Case soften the story, with a humorous touch.

Here’s a book preschools need to have.

You’re lucky, Momfilter readers. You can win a copy. Leave a comment, and a random winner will be chosen.

Sarah Werthan Buttenwieser is a freelance writer and blogger whose work has appeared in the New York Times, Brain Child Magazine and Salon the Huffington Post, Babble and Ceramics Monthly. Her essays have appeared in various anthologies including The Maternal is Political and Wait a Minute, I Have to Take Off My Bra. A writer for Preview Massachusetts Magazine, she keeps a personal blog, Standing in the Shadows at the publication’s news site, the Valley Advocate and a tumblr Refractions. She is a sometime contributor to Momfilter. Follow her on twitter–@standshadows or Pinterest.


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Comments (15)


  1. Posted by: Aarika

    This book reminds me so much of my nephew and how uniquely “him” he is :)

  2. Posted by: Katharina

    I would love to read that book with my son! Thank you for nice giveaway!

  3. Posted by: ileana

    Ode To Positive Constructive Daydreaming. Jacob must be a very creative boy.

  4. Posted by: Shannon

    Sounds like a book all three of my kids would love!

  5. Posted by: Tom Fiorella

    It looks like a lovely book. I’d love to donate it to my son’s classroom! Thanks for highlighting it!

  6. Posted by: Jennifer

    I love hearing about books with a different perspective or message.

  7. Posted by: Kerry

    My son would wear his sisters pink tutu and Bob the Builder hard hat to the grocery store. We ran into one of my father in laws fraternity brothers one day and the phone lines were burning up about it.

  8. Posted by: Bets

    Would love for my boys to read this and would like Tom love to donate it on to my very lovely local library.

  9. Posted by: Emily R

    My 2yo insists he’s going to be a ballerina when he grows up. This would be a great book for him!

  10. Posted by: Mary Ann

    It sounds like this would be a good book for my six-year-old daughter to read. She is very sure that boys should not wear pink, should not be in her ballet class and should not play with dolls. I think she picked up the idea in preschool, when all of the kids in her class aligned with the usual gender stereotypes. It continued through 4K and into kindergarten, and discussions about it at home and in her classroom haven’t changed her mind at all. She doesn’t get forceful about it; rather, she seems confused as to why a boy would want to do those things. Maybe this story will help her understand that boys and girls both have choices?

  11. Posted by: Ciara

    Would love a copy of this book for my two kiddos

  12. Posted by: marie-annick

    Wow, this book is awesome and so cute!

  13. Posted by: Nerissa

    First, can I say that I adore this website? It is one of my go-to’s. This book/giveaway is so timely, as I have been pondering how to best approach this very issue with my preschooler. Thanks for alerting us. If I win, I will donate it.

    • Posted by: Yolanda Edwards

      very sweet comment to read first thing this morning. thank you! yolanda

  14. Posted by: Chelsea

    I would love to read this to my girls, especially since my 2yo has entered a really intense Gender Police phase.

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