Book Recommendations for Girls

8/1/2018

Reading for pleasure is proven to have a positive impact on girls’ lives. A 2014 survey of just over 1,000 children by Scholastic, the children’s book publisher, found that children who are read aloud to at home are more likely to read on their own as they grow up. At a young age, reading introduces girls to new vocabulary words and as they get older it allows them to escape into fantasy worlds that teach valuable life skills. Sometimes it can be hard to find a book that has a girl as the main heroine or one that features an empowering message appropriate for your daughter. So we've done the research for you! Check out the below book recommendations that focus on girls and will encourage your daughter to read on her own.


ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Same Difference is a charming book for young readers that addresses the sensitive and sometime divisive issues of beauty and identity. It has a lyrical, upbeat air that begs to be read aloud and offers an engaging rhyme pattern for young children. Vivid illustrations capture the spirit and innocence of Lida and Lisa, two first cousins who find themselves at odds with each other over their physical differences. With the help of their wise grandmother, the girls soon realize that their bond is deeper than what they see and our differences are what make us beautiful.
 
"Where are the girls?" When Grace's teacher reveals that the United States has never had a female president, Grace decides to be the first. And she immediately starts off her political career as a candidate the school's mock election!
 
Who Is Your Hero? Isabella's include astronaut Sally Ride, activist Rosa Parks, scientist Marie Curie, sharpshooter Annie Oakley and, of course, her own mommy! Join Isabella on an adventure of discovery - and find out how imagining to be these extraordinary women teaches her the importance of being her extraordinary self.
 
Juana loves many things—drawing, eating Brussels sprouts, living in Bogotá, Colombia, and especially her dog, Lucas, the best amigo ever. She does not love wearing her itchy school uniform, solving math problems, or going to dance class. And she especially does not love learning the English. But when Juana’s abuelos tell her about a special trip they are planning—one that Juana will need to speak English to go on—Juana begins to wonder whether learning the English might be a good use of her time after all.

 

Hello Ruby: Adventures in Coding by Linda Liukas (Ages 6-10)

Meet Ruby―a small girl with a huge imagination, and the determination to solve any puzzle. As Ruby stomps around her world making new friends, including the Wise Snow Leopard, the Friendly Foxes, and the Messy Robots, kids will be introduced to the fundamentals of computational thinking, like how to break big problems into small ones, create step-by-step plans, look for patterns and think outside the box through storytelling.
 

MIDDLE SCHOOL

Harriet M. Welsch is a spy. In her notebook, she writes down everything she knows about everyone, even her classmates and her best friends. Then Harriet loses track of her notebook, and it ends up in the wrong hands. Before she can stop them, her friends have read the always truthful, sometimes awful things she's written about each of them. Will Harriet find a way to put her life and her friendships back together?
 
It's 1943, and eleven-year-old Dewey Kerrigan is en route to New Mexico to live with her mathematician father. Soon she arrives at a town that, officially, doesn't exist. It is called Los Alamos, and it is abuzz with activity, as scientists and mathematicians from all over America and Europe work on the biggest secret of all—"the gadget."
 
It's 1921, and when Celeste Lassiter Massey goes to stay with her Aunt Valentina in Harlem, she is not thrilled to trade her friends and comfortable North Carolina surroundings for scary big city life with a famous actress. A passionate writer, talented violinist, and aspiring doctor, Celeste eventually faces a choice between ambition and loyalty, roots and horizons. The decision will change her forever.
 
Twelve-year-old September lives in Omaha, and used to have an ordinary life, until her father went to war and her mother went to work. One day, September is met at her kitchen window by a Green Wind (taking the form of a gentleman in a green jacket), who invites her on an adventure, implying that her help is needed in Fairyland. The new Marquess is unpredictable and fickle, and also not much older than September. She is already making new friends in this strange land, including a book-loving Wyvern and a mysterious boy named Saturday but only September can retrieve a talisman the Marquess wants from the enchanted woods, and if she doesn't...then the Marquess will make life impossible for the inhabitants of Fairyland.

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist—books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.
 

HIGH SCHOOL

When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala's miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York.
 
Graceling tells the story of the vulnerable-yet-strong Katsa, who is smart and beautiful and lives in the Seven Kingdoms where selected people are born with a Grace, a special talent that can be anything at all. Katsa’s Grace is killing. As the king’s niece, she is forced to use her extreme skills as his brutal enforcer. Until the day she meets Prince Po, who is Graced with combat skills, and Katsa’s life begins to change. She never expects to become Po’s friend. She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Grace—or about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away...a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone.

 

Juliet Milagros Palante is leaving the Bronx and headed to Portland, Oregon. She just came out to her family and isn’t sure if her mom will ever speak to her again. But Juliet has a plan, sort of, one that’s going to help her figure out this whole “Puerto Rican lesbian” thing. She’s interning with the author of her favorite book: Harlowe Brisbane. Will Juliet be able to figure out her life over the course of one magical summer? Is that even possible? Or is she running away from all the problems that seem too big to handle?

 

Navigating between the Indian traditions they've inherited and the baffling new world, the characters in Jhumpa Lahiri's elegant, touching stories seek love beyond the barriers of culture and generations. In "A Temporary Matter," published in The New Yorker, a young Indian-American couple faces the heartbreak of a stillborn birth while their Boston neighborhood copes with a nightly blackout. In the title story, an interpreter guides an American family through the India of their ancestors and hears an astonishing confession.

 

Celie is a poor black woman whose letters tell the story of 20 years of her life, beginning at age 14 when she is being abused and raped by her father and attempting to protect her sister from the same fate, and continuing over the course of her marriage to "Mister," a brutal man who terrorizes her. Celie eventually learns that her abusive husband has been keeping her sister's letters from her and the rage she feels, combined with an example of love and independence provided by her close friend Shug, pushes her finally toward an awakening of her creative and loving self.
The Ellis School

Written by The Ellis School