Candlewick’s publication this month of a 25th anniversary edition of Leslea Newman’s picture book Heather Has Two Mommies is evidence that this modern classic of LGBTQ literature—the first children’s book to feature the child of two lesbian parents—is a survivor despite the fact that, from its first publication, the book has been one of the most challenged in America. It was, in fact, the ninth most challenged book of the decade of the 1990s and this new edition is sure to spark more protests.
Though a quarter of a century has passed since its initial publication, the book holds up well. With new illustrations and a slightly revised text, it continues to be a charming, sweet-spirited story that still fills a need, as children of same-sex parents too often continue to be subject to taunts, teasing, and other forms of mean-spirited opprobrium.
It appears that Heather still has two
mommies, but now they are married!
Nevertheless, times are changing as gay marriage has become legal in 36 states, and Heather, in an understated way, has changed, too. In the book’s first edition, Heather’s two mommies were partners. Now—though it goes unremarked in the text—the two women are depicted wearing wedding rings. It appears that Heather still has two mommies, but now they are married! Congratulations to the mommies and kudos to Newman and her new illustrator Laura Cornell for bringing fresh life to this standard title.