I grew up an almost incurable tomboy— hair in a sloppy ponytail, jeans with holes in both knees, and baggy t-shirts. With two older sisters who liked makeup and nail polish and doing their hair, I played with my brothers. The great thing about growing up between boys and girls was I read boy books and girl books. My mother read us everything, never separating us out. But that didn’t change the fact that my brothers never really liked Anne of Green Gables or the fact that we rolled our eyes at Hank, the Cowdog or Redwall.

The books I suggest here are fiction stories I think girls will like. Try them on your son, and he just might like them too, even though he might not admit it. But don’t forget to check out my lists for boys too. Some of the books over there are my favorite reads. As always, have a book you want me to read? Send me an email and I’d love to check it out.


Adela’s List  |  Kindergarten & 1st grade

note I include this list of books, aware that a Kindergartner is almost never ready to read these books herself. I encourage parents to read aloud or get books on CD.

  1. Winnie the Pooh  |  A. A. Milne ills. E. H. Shepherd
  2. The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter |  Beatrix Potter
  3. The Real Mother Goose  |  Blanche Fisher Wright
  4. The Foot Book  |  Dr. Seuss

Jo’s List  |  2nd Grade

  1. Charlotte’s Web  |  E. B. White (also consider his other excellent books, Stuart Little and Trumpet of the Swan)
  2. Sarah, Plain and Tall  | Patricia MacLachlan (this books has several sequels, including  Skylark and Caleb’s Story.)
  3. Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle  |  Betty MacDonald  ills. Hillary Knight

Claire’s List |  3rd-4th Grade

  1. Mr. Popper’s Penguins  |  Richard and Florence Atwater ills. Robert Lawson
  2. The Cricket in Times Square  |  George Selden ills. Garth Williams
  3. Phoebe the Spy  |  Judith Berry Griffin
  4. Little House in the Big Woods  |  Laura Ingalls Wilder  ills. Garth Williams
  5. Mary Poppins   |  P. L. Travers
  6. Misty of Chincoteague  | Marguerite Henry  ills. Wesley Dennis
  7. A Little Princess  |  Francis Hodgson Burnett
  8. Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH  |  Robert C. O’Brien
  9. From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler  |  E. L. Konigsburg

Elaine’s List | 5th-6th Grade

  1. The Borrowers  |  Mary Norton ills. Joe and Beth Krush
  2. Out of the Dust  | Karen Hesse
  3. Roller Skates  | Ruth Sawyer
  4. My Louisianna Sky  |  Kimberly Willis Holt
  5.  The Blue Fairy Book  |  edited Andrew Lang  ills. Henry J. Ford
  6. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe  |  C. S. Lewis  ills. Pauline Baynes
  7. Island of the Blue Dolphins  |  Scott O’Dell
  8. Our Only May Amelia  |  Jennifer L. Holm
  9. Caddie Woodlawn  |   Carol Ryrie Brink

Kathryn’s List | 7th-8th Grade

  1. Hope was Here  | Joan Bauer
  2. Anne of Green Gables  |  L. M. Montgomery (I highly recommend her Emily books and Jane of Lantern Hill, but the Anne books are classic)
  3. Little Women  |  Louisa May Alcott
  4. Bloomability  |  Sharon Creech
  5. Nory Ryan’s Song  |  Patricia Reilly Giff
  6. Beauty  |  Robin McKinley
  7. A Wrinkle in Time  |  Madeleine L’Engle
  8. The Witch of Blackbird Pond  |   Elizabeth George Speare
  9. Tuck Everlasting  |  Natalie Babbitt

Caroline’s list  |  9th-12th Grade

  1. The Goose Girl  |  Shannon Hale
  2. Bright Island  |  Mabel Robinson
  3. A Girl of the Limberlost  |  Gene Stratton-Porter
  4. Anne Frank : The Diary of a Young Girl  |  Anne Frank

Kaitlin’s List |  College and Beyond

  1. To Kill A Mockingbird  |  Harper Lee
  2. Jane Eyre  |  Charlotte Brontë
  3. Till We Have Faces  |  C. S. Lewis

Ruth’s List  |  Busy Moms

  1. My Ántonia |  Willa Cather
  2. Around the World in Eighty Days  |  Jules Verne
  3. Jane of Lantern Hill |  L. M. Montgomery
  4. The Scarlet Pimpernel  |  Baroness Orczy
  5. Of Mice and of Men  |  John Steinbeck
  6. Phantom of the Opera  |  Gaston Leroux
  7. The Princess Bride  |  William Golding