Books with Strong Female Characters

If you think "girl books" are just about princesses, romance, gossipy schoolgirls, and vampires, think again. There are plenty of great books featuring strong female main characters in compelling stories that are sure to appeal to boys as well as girls. We've selected a pile of books with universal appeal for kids of different ages and tastes, from bestselling picture books to young adult novels in just about every genre: adventure, fantasy, sci-fi, historical fiction, and family and school dramas. Check 'em out! And for more strong women, check out these movies with strong female characters.

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Don't Touch My Hair! Poster Image
BOOK

Don't Touch My Hair!

age 4+

Girl speaks up, sets boundaries in funny picture book.

By: Sharee Miller (2019)
Eloise Poster Image
BOOK

Eloise

age 4+

Spirited Eloise delights her young readers.

By: Kay Thompson (1955)
Just Help! How to Build a Better World Poster Image
BOOK

Just Help! How to Build a Better World

age 4+

Inspiring portrait of service urges kids to give back.

By: Sonia Sotomayor (2022)
Malala's Magic Pencil Poster Image
BOOK

Malala's Magic Pencil

age 5+

Nobel winner tells what inspired activism in relatable tale.

By: Malala Yousafzai (2017)
The Princess in Black Poster Image
BOOK

The Princess in Black

age 5+

Fun tale of monster-fighting princess who leads double life.

By: Shannon Hale , Dean Hale (2014)
Sofia Valdez, Future Prez Poster Image
BOOK

Sofia Valdez, Future Prez

age 5+

Girl takes on city hall in fun, diverse tale of persistence.

By: Andrea Beaty (2019)
Dory Fantasmagory: Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

Dory Fantasmagory: Book 1

age 6+

Funny, relatable tale of 6-year-old with wild imagination.

By: Abby Hanlon (2014)
Goldie Blox Rules the School!: GoldieBlox, Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

Goldie Blox Rules the School!: GoldieBlox, Book 1

age 6+

Cheery, messy fun in freewheeling female engineer series.

By: Stacy McAnulty (2017)
Book cover: I Am Malala Yousafzai
BOOK

I Am Malala Yousafzai: Ordinary People Change the World

age 6+

Engaging bio of teen education activist/Nobel prize winner.

By: Brad Meltzer (2022)
Rosie Revere and the Raucous Riveters: The Questioneers, Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

Rosie Revere and the Raucous Riveters: The Questioneers, Book 1

age 6+

Girl invents a painting machine in fun story of engineering.

By: Andrea Beaty (2018)
Stacey's Extraordinary Words Poster Image
BOOK

Stacey's Extraordinary Words

age 6+

Sweet story encourages perseverance, spotlights diversity.

By: Stacey Abrams (2021)
The Story of Ruby BridgesThe Story of Ruby Bridges: A Biography Book for New Readers Cover
BOOK

The Story of Ruby Bridges: A Biography Book for New Readers

age 6+

Fact-filled history of kid civil rights pioneer.

By: Arlisha Norwood (2021)
Stella Díaz Has Something to Say: Stella Díaz, Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

Stella Díaz Has Something to Say: Stella Díaz, Book 1

age 6+

Kindness helps bilingual girl with public speaking, friends.

By: Angela Dominguez (2019)
Nancy Clancy, Super Sleuth Poster Image
BOOK

Nancy Clancy, Super Sleuth

age 7+

Chapter book mystery promises more fun for Fancy Nancy fans.

By: Jane O'Connor (2012)
Rebel Girls Climate Warriors Cover
BOOK

Rebel Girls Climate Warriors: 25 Tales of Women Who Protect the Earth

age 7+

Incredible tales of women and girls fighting for the planet.

By: Rebel Girls (2022)
Skunked!: Calpurnia Tate, Girl Vet, Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

Skunked!: Calpurnia Tate, Girl Vet, Book 1

age 7+

Laughs, science in new Callie series for younger readers.

By: Jacqueline Kelly (2016)
Zita the Spacegirl Poster Image
BOOK

Zita the Spacegirl

age 7+

Brave girl seeks missing friend in exciting graphic novel.

By: Ben Hatke (2011)
The Adventures of a Girl Called Bicycle Poster Image
BOOK

The Adventures of a Girl Called Bicycle

age 8+

Girl bikes across the U.S. in quirky road-trip adventure.

By: Christina Uss (2018)
Amari and the Night Brothers Poster Image
BOOK

Amari and the Night Brothers: Supernatural Investigations, Book 1

age 8+

Girl finds her magic in fun fantasy full of surprises.

By: B.B. Alston (2021)
Amina's Voice, Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

Amina's Voice, Book 1

age 8+

Beautiful tale of Pakistani American middle-schooler.

By: Hena Khan (2017)