Growing up, I was mesmerized by Meg Murry’s adventures and resourcefulness in the classic A Wrinkle in Time. Her book now joins this list of my favorites featuring memorable female characters.

I’ve avoided pigeonholing most of the titles by age/reading level appropriateness so that, as a parent, you could choose these as read-aloud books to discuss with your child.


Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo

Becoming RGB: Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Journey to Justice by Debbie Levy, illustrated by Whitney Gardner

Beverly, Right Here by Kate DiCamillo (appropriate for middle grades)

brown girl dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson


Fancy Nancy (series) by Jane O’Connor, illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser (appealing to younger kids)

Hidden Figures : The True Story of four Black Women and the Space Race, by Morgot Lee Shetterly with Winifred Conkling, illustrated by Laura Freeman

I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai

Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell

The Library by Sarah Stewart

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great by Judy Blume

Patina by Jason Reynolds (appropriate for middle grades)

Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

©Susan Y. Hoffman, 2020