This book is about a boy who chooses to put on his favorite tangerine dress every day when he gets to school, because it makes him happy. Without being preachy, overly complex or theoretical, this book manages to communicate that Morris' gender expression is okay, and just one part of who he is. If the other children want to go on Morris' awesome pretend space adventures, they better accept the dress. Morris Micklewhite... avoids labels about sexuality and gender that most children probably aren't ready for. When little Becky tells Morris that "boys don't wear dresses," he says, "this boy does." And that's that.
I've had parents request superhero books for their sons and turn down Wonder Woman, and I've heard one friend tell another that he can't read Dork Diaries because "it's for girls." Morris Micklewhite... is so necessary, and such a breath of fresh air.
This one just sounded perfectly cute, so I had to read it. Meet Morris, he is a normal boy, but he has something others may find strange, he likes to wear a tangerine dress and fit all the shoes there are in the dress-up center. And I can imagine that dress looks fabulous, and I agree it does remind me of a tiger.
But sadly, his classmates aren't so kind to him. They make fun of him for wearing the dress and the shoes. One even tries to rip the dress off him as, in her opinion, he cannot wear that dress.
I loved his mom, how supportive she was. That she loved her creative and imaginative boy for who he was. I have read a few other books were parents weren't so happy with their kids acting outside of the standard set ways (screw those btw).
I did feel terrible for Morris. He tried so hard to ignore it, but in the final day of the week... he just couldn't handle it, and I know the feeling. Bullying is terrible. Some people will say that words don't hurt, but sorry, they hurt. They freaking hurt a lot.
Morris also has a delightful imagination, and I loved that he wants to share it with people, even though they are mean to him. That is really brave and strong of him.
I did get a bit tired of the whole: The dress did this and that, the shoes did that and this. We get it, it swishes. We get it, shoes click.
And sure, the ending was a bit magical. One moment he feels crappy, then he feel better, gets magical confidence, and things are poof solved. I just wish it was that simple. But quite often, bullying doesn't just end because one gains confidence. I guess the author wanted the book to end on a happy note, and I am fine with that, but I would have rather seen it be less magical, and a bit more practical.
As for why the book was banned/or people wanted to get it banned. Heaven forbid a boy wears a dress. Come on people. *shakes her head*
The art was pretty nicely done. I did love the dress, and boy that colour was indeed fabulous.
All in all, I still would recommend this book. It was a good book to read.
Review first posted at https://twirlingbookprincess.com/
I especially appreciated the part where the boys push him away "threaten to get contaminate by his girlish ways", because it's often the case that boys/men, threaten in their own masculinity. They can act badly toward to person assigned boys/men at birth who are not scared to express every part of their gender identity.