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RAISING LUMINARIES

Hi, I’m Ashia, founder & Head Custodian of Infodumpery for Raising Luminaries.

I create free tool kits to help overworked caregivers ignite the next generation of leaders.

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Home Book Collections Kyriarchy-Smashing Kids Books For 10-Year-Olds

Kyriarchy-Smashing Kids Books For 10-Year-Olds

Favorite Kids Books Hand-Picked by Actual Kids

via Ashia
Published: Last Updated on 3.9K views

[Image description: Good Finds: Stories for 10-year-olds, Raising Luminaries]



We’ll be adding to this throughout the year. Stay tuned & sign up for email updates below.

 

 

View the full list of Inclusive Books Curated by 10-Year-Olds

For the full archives, you can find those here: All Good Finds Collections.

This post contains affiliate links. Check out the full affiliate disclosure along with the BFL statement of accountability.


Earth boy

Earth Boy

(Ages 10+)

This book has so many themes I’ve been searching for!!!!!

    • A non-incel masculine Asian protagonist who isn’t threatened by competent women, resists toxic masculinity, and leads through hard work and integrity.
    • Touching on the sense of being the ‘only Asian in the room’ (or the only Earth boy in the space station), including common experiences such as the pressure to perform exceptionally to overcome bigotry and xenophobia of classmates and teachers.
    • Opens discussion on how institutions include us as tokens for diversity points (or profits), but don’t put any effort into making the institution inclusive or adjusting the culture or policies so the person being tokenized can actually succeed.
    • The protagonist has a slightly plump sister. Who happens to resemble and be shaped almost exactly like me. I’m not biased or anything, but …
      Hah ha! J/K, oh heck yeah, I’m biased! This is only one of two books where I’ve seen positive representation for my type of short-legged, buxom, boxy Chinese AFAB body. POINTS FOR POSITIVE REPRESENTATION!

Seriously EVERY. SINGLE. PAGE of this was deeply validating, satisfying, and gave me hope.

If you liked this story, check out

 


Student Ambassador: The Missing Dragon

Student Ambassador: The Missing Dragon

(Ages 10+)

Diplomacy, befriending arrogant dictators, learning to read Korean, this book has all kinds of stuff I’ve never found in a kid’s book!

In addition to a Strong Male Lead (and by that a thoughtful and patient embodiment of healthy masculinity), we see the protagonist lead through support and kindness.

If you like this, check out:



Stuntboy in the meantime

Stuntyboy, In the Meantime, Vol 1

Recommended by partners-in-cahoots at Revolutionary Humans, Q agrees it’s kickass and fun.

Featuring a boy in the midst of his parents separation, celebrating apartment life, and learning to deal with jerks and family conflict, Reynolds makes space for vulnerability, healthy masculinity, and Black boy joy.

If you liked these stories, check out:


sunzi the art of war illustrated

The Art of War: Illustrated

I had hoped that when Q was finally old enough to parse Sun Zu’s ‘Art of War,’ we could read it as a theoretical – applying it to classroom and recess politics.

Unfortunately, we’re reading this book alongside our nightly news updates about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. As we watch President Zelenskyy’s calls for compassion, allyship, and support, we’re also drawing parallel’s between his decision as a wartime leader, and Sun Zu’s battle theory.

I wish I could recommend this book under different circumstances – but honestly that was never a realistic dream. Invasion, occupation, and conquest for the sake of greed and power continues on a global scale, even when western news outlets aren’t covering European conflict.

If you liked these stories, check out:

 


Thunder Rose

This has been a long-time favorite of ours, and Thunder Rose was an early OG kickass Black girl in gender-inclusive kidlit.

But it’s always been…wordy. Now that the kids are older, we can read the full text and the Earthquakes are riveted. We’re also dusting this story off in time for Q to go through his public school’s standard unit on Tall Tales, to dismantle the typical whitewashing that comes with this staple of US elementary education.

If you liked these stories, check out:

 


Animated Science: Periodic Table - Farndon, John

Animated Science: Periodic Table

Q has entered the age where he’ll pour over detailed non-fiction books, so long as they’re presented in a fun way. I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS NERDERY!

After a week with this book, Q is able to give a brief rundown of the properties on each element, based on the goofy character stories the author created. Brilliant!

While flipping through the book, I was surprised how many gender-nonconforming careers and sciencey people they sprinkled through the pages. Not in a tokenized, ‘LOOK! We made a LADY scientist!’ – something about the illustrations felt intentional, inclusive, and like no-big-deal.

Turns out the illustrator is Japanese American illustrator Shiho Pate, and her work is brilliant – I’m so excited for her upcoming book on Ramen.

If you liked this story, check out: Inclusive Kids Books About STEAM & Graphic Novels for Elementary-Aged Kids


Just Roll with It: (A Graphic Novel) - Durfey-Lavoie, Lee

Just Roll With It

Since May was both AAPI heritage and destigmatizing mental health conditions month, we plowed through a ton of books on both topics and found this lovely gem at the intersection of both.

Plus more nerdery! D&D fans, rejoice. And more complex #OwnVoices stories on navigating OCD, anxiety, and social pressure! Fans of Real Friends, rejoice!

Written by multiracial, neurodivergent author Veronica Ararwal  (Indian, Italian, ADHD) and Lee Durfey-Lavoie (a white dude, I think?), both drew from their #OwnVoices experience navigating mental health, anxiety, depression, and OCD to create the next generation of validating graphic novels for kids.

They worked hard on this novel, and you can tell. They packed a lot in there. There’s gay family members and it’s no big deal! Maggie’s Asian parents are not a stereotype! Maggie finds a supportive group of nerdy friends!

It’s just so lovely and wonderful. I’m so excited to see what these creators make next.

If you liked this story, check out: Destigmatizing Mental Health for Asian & Pacific Islander Kids Kids Stories of Supportive Friendship


Living with Viola - Fung, Rosena

Living With Viola

We were just joking on the podcast about how if there is already one Asian Character Story, there just isn’t room in the whiteness of media for more of us, so we have to wait our turn until someone gets canceled or dies.

So let’s not do that! We have more than enough room for two, very different experiences of Asian-American kiddos who experience mental health challenges.

Again – very different stories. Both valid, both solid representation. We have room for more than a single narrative!

Fung’s Chinese Canadian family feels solidly accurate for the third-culture kid Chinese diaspora experience. Her family is loving, which through a western lens, feels very judgemental and pressurey. We see Livy bear the comments of her family, the pressure to not be a burden on her overworked parents – without the story falling into another stereotype about tiger parents.

And that’s a lot to handle while dealing with a mental health issue and navigating the responsibility to be ‘a good daughter’ in two simultaneous cultures in an immigrant family.

This felt validating, is what I’m saying.

Oh also Q enjoyed it too.

If you liked this story, check out: #OwnVoices Kidlit Authors With Disabilities & Delicious Asian & Pacific Islander Food Culture for Kids


Flash Forward: An Illustrated Guide to Possible (and Not So Possible) Tomorrows - Eveleth, RoseFlash Forward: An Illustrated Guide to Possible (and not so possible) Tomorrows

I got this to read myself, but Q was like ‘Oh a graphic novel – that’s for me!’, grabbed it and wouldn’t let go. Over the course of months, he slowly worked through the speculative science fiction, stopping occasionally to ask me to explain some of the more adult jokes and how the futurist scenarios connect to the problems of today.

The compilation of stories was created by a range of creative modern artists – including Blue Delliquanti, maker of my absolute most favorite adult graphic novel, O Human Star.

Future explorations range from the conflict between integrating tech that makes life accessible for folks with disabilities – at the cost of our privacy. What happens when the capitalist machine of big pharma goes even deeper off the rails – stuff like that. Most of the futures are a dystopian warning, but nothing too traumatic for a 10-year-old.

If you liked this story, check out: Graphic Novels for Elementary-Aged Kids


Katie the Catsitter: More Cats, More Fun! Boxed Set (Books 1 and 2) - Venable, Colleen AFKatie the Catsitter

Other than a slight jab at spam (no thank you, anti-AAPI & classist food shaming!) this two-book series is lovely, hilarious, and fun.

The author weaves in a few different plot lines – friendship conflict, weighing the risks and benefits of disruption and sabotage in the fight against capitalist climate destruction, social media misinformation, trauma reactions and trying not to care what others think about you – but also being a human who can’t not.

If you liked this story, check out: Kids Stories featuring Supportive Friendships



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I’m an Autistic, multiracial (Chinese/Irish) 2nd-generation settler raising two children alongside my partner on the homelands of the Wampanoag and Massachusett people. My goal with Raising Luminaries is to collaborate with families and educators in raising the next generation of kind & courageous leaders, so we can all smash the kyriarchy together.

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RAISING LUMINARIES

Hi, I’m Ashia, founder & Head Custodian of Infodumpery for Raising Luminaries.

I create free tool kits to help overworked caregivers ignite the next generation of leaders.

ABOUT | MISSION | FINANCIALS | ACCOUNTABILITY

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Posts may contain affiliate links and  sponsorships, which allow me to earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

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