Children - Coming of Age
40 Pages
Reviewed on 01/10/2023
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Author Biography

I was born into a large family, the sixth of seven children, with many cousins and extended family. Growing up in such a large group, it took me a long time to develop and discover my own identity and how my special uniqueness contributed to mu family and beyond them the world. Located in the Midwest, United States, my husband and I have raised our own two children as well as a handful of foster children. I was inspired to write "I am POUG" because of the life journey of one child who lived with us for several years, during which time, they were searching for love, acceptance, and their own truest self/identity.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Kathy Golden for Readers' Favorite

I Am POUG by Kellan Lamberti is not just a story for children. It is a wonderful perspective to help adults of any age who have had to face or who are facing what the author experienced growing up. The strength of this story is that it allows readers to experience life from Kellan’s perspective from a young age. By doing so, they see how difficult it is even for well-meaning parents to understand the true nature of their children’s gender. In addition, they also appreciate how hard it is for children to understand their true genders and to shield themselves from all the expectations of family and friends and other concerned individuals.

I Am POUG by Kellan Lamberti should be seen as required reading for all teachers and parents of young children. It is also a book that needs to be placed on the reading table in school libraries so that it is accessible to children. Once they start reading it, they will better understand how they are made up and perhaps be motivated to take the steps necessary to let their parents know and avoid spending so much of their lives trying to be someone they are not. The illustrations are well done and the book cover is attractive and exceptionally on point. I liked the impressionist feel of many of the pictures, as this style is perfect for the theme of the book. This is an enlightening and sincere book that explores what being a Person Of Unknown Gender (POUG) involves. To all who encounter this review, I urge you to read this book and share it where you perceive it can help children to be the beautiful human beings they are, in all their infinite variety.

Jennifer Ibiam

Mom was obsessed with making her little girl look like a proper lady. Nice hair, glossed lips, cute dresses, and stunning accessories, but she wanted nothing of that. She would rather ride bikes, play in the dirt, climb trees, and dress in her brother’s dungarees. Her mom insisted a lady must be gentle, not play rough, and always stay collected. Unfortunately, the older she grew, the more she fell in love with male looks and activities, to her mom’s dismay. Her parents offered advice and even suggested she get treatment, to no avail. Yet she loved her family and must re-evaluate at some point. Will she give up her authenticity to please her loved ones? Find out in I Am POUG by Kellan Lamberti.

I Am POUG by Kellan Lamberti is a brilliant story for young adults who feel they don’t fit in; I will read this to my child as a reminder to step outside the box. Who says your gender determines your designated path and how much you can achieve? Who says a woman must look prim and proper, keep house, and remain unaccomplished while men do the hard labor? This story says we should be more because no profession or sporting activity is sacred to one gender. Gender-based appropriateness is a societal construct confining people and limiting their abilities. We can wear many hats and look any way we want. Children will love this tale because it builds their confidence and expands their horizons of possibilities. Persons of unknown genders (POUG) can be anything they want. I loved the simple grammar, educational story, and descriptive pictures. Thank you for a great read.

Astrid Iustulin

It is not easy to be accepted if we are not as others would like us to be and do not behave as they want. This also happened to the young protagonist of I Am POUG by Kellan Lamberti, who, from an early age, thought differently from what others expected. Her mother wanted her to act like a young lady, but our protagonist preferred playing football and climbing trees. Later, many other people offered their advice, but the reality was that our protagonist is POUG - a Person Of Unknown Gender.

It is sometimes difficult to explain some concepts to young readers, and what it means to be a Person Of Unknown Gender is one of them. However, I Am POUG is a book that helps clarify the principle. Kellan Lamberti has written a story that is easy to understand and remarkable for how the author tells it. I think many young readers will find it useful. I also believe the people who will especially love this book are the ones who feel just like the protagonist; I am sure this story will give them strength and hope. I must also add that this book has many beautiful pictures that will help children understand the meaning of the story. I recommend this book to open-minded readers who understand what it means to respect the choices of others and also to anyone who wants to explain these concepts to someone else.

Jamie Michele

I Am POUG, which is written and illustrated by Kellan Lamberti, is a children's picture book that follows the growth of a young person who does not fit the mold others have constructed for them. POUG stands for Person Of Unknown Gender, and Lamberti begins with a child who knows they are different but is unsure exactly why that is, as the mother figure dresses the child in pink and does their hair in a style that is traditionally female gender conforming. The child struggles with their inability to balance who they are on the inside with the way others see them on the outside, and this continues and is amplified as they age.

I Am POUG by Kellan Lamberti is a timely piece of children's literature with an important message. Lamberti's illustrations feature a bold primary color palette and have the appearance of digital graphics with a softening of the sharper elements. The rhyme scheme is occasionally on the bumpy side, but the theme is incredibly strong and I do feel that in this case, the intent is what matters most. Whether a household has a POUG as a member of the family or not, this is the type of book that reinforces the organic nature of gender non-conforming and will not only inspire young readers who question conformity themselves, but also those who feel binary but need to learn about others who aren't as certain. Recommended.