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19 Books Girls Should Read

March 16, 2017       Arts and Culture
19 Books Young Girls
Should be Reading

More often than not young girls these days are attracted to feeding frenzy, pop culture reading: Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, the Divergent series, and even Gossip Girl for their fix of cool reading. 

But there is more than pop culture blips out there that young girls should check out so they may enjoy those books that don't really show up on anyone's radar but may be more enjoyable to read than the media touted books.  These books aren't just meant for girl readers for anyone who loves to read good books can pick up the stuff on our list and add them to their Me-time reading days.

We put together a list of less known (among Pinoy readers at least) books and authors whom both tween and teen girls might find more enamored of than the latest movie-tie in book.

Beren and Luthien by J.R.R. Tolkien

For teen readers getting fond of historical romance, no other tale of true love should be closer to your heart than Beren and Luthien by J.R.R. Tolkien.  Harper Collins has made the book available this 2017 as a standalone from the mother tale, The Silmarillion from where it is esconced as part of the epic. 

For young girls who swoon for a hero who would go to the ends of the earth to steal the "holy jewel" (the legendary Silmarils) from the Big Bad (Sauron) king of darkness
to save the kingdom, Beren and Luthien is high fantasy romp with heroic fights against werewolves--Beren going against the badass werewolf champion, Carcaroth and other evil fiends.  It is also a princess and pauper riffed love story:  Beren is human and mortal while Luthien is Elvish and immortal.  When each dies tragically doing heroic deeds towards the end of their tale, the Valar judge of the dead, Mandos restores both to life as humans to live out their days happily married and growing old together.

Reading J.R.R. Tolkien's Silmarillion is different from Lord of the Rings because of the heavy, fairy-tale prose stylist narrative--which may take some getting used to by readers weaned on simpler writing styles.  But once you get the hang of it, you find yourself immersed in one of the most beautiful epic romances set in fantasy that you will ever read.  You may never look at other writing styles in the same manner again after reading Tolkien's Tale of Beren and Luthien.  Something to get you started with for fans of fairy tale fantasy, historical romance epics

Dragonfield and Other Stories by Jane Yolen

If you prefer short story collections, Dragonfield (and Other Stories) by Jane Yolen is a keeper.  Yolen's storyteller collection of world myths and fplktales should inspire young girl readers looking for unusual stories to engage them.  Teens tend to rediscover that magic stories and fantasy tales are never outgrown nor get irrelevant as part of one's literary learning.  Fairy tales for older readers have been in vogue for the past three decades or so, but Jane Yolen came out with her own anthology way before it was hip to write fairy tale retellings with more mature themes. 

Why should young girls read fairy tales in unbowdlerized form?  Because they are stories that show real emotion and tragedies that child-age only fairy tales mask from younger readers. 

Yolen has been often described as the Hans Christian Andersen of America.  Most narrow-minded parents or teachers may still view the fairy tale as a largely didactic medium for teaching moral values.  Yolen knows better than push moral dogma, instead she revels in the medium's journey, a heroine or hero finding their identity and bearing it with honor.  Some of her adaptations and reimagined tales also offer that happy endings are not the be all of every life lesson.  Journeys and adventure that end in loss are still good stories to read.  Jane Yolen's collection in Dragonfield is as good as any for young girls wanting more fairy tales to read--for the sake of reading them--and maybe write some of their own if they find the magic.

The School of Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

Female fans of Harry Potter wanting more good stuff and magical finishing schools should like this switcheroo story about good girl and bad girl entering fairy tale school and finding out what honor and true love is.  Teen girls and their tween friends may have already been in situations where they get stuck in the wrong place at the right time.  In such a predicament, the noble heroine stands up for what is right than go along with what everyone else would do.

Dealing with those kind of twists and turns is what The School of Good and Evil is all about.  Author, Soman Chainani weaves an easy to read adventure of two girls predestined for certain life roles in fairy tale land--the heroine and the villain. But the placing of two girls in the opposite roles from where they actually fit in according to their natures is where the adventure starts and it is that all too real, life lesson that the female teen reader will be reading about.

How does a good person deal with being cast among misfits.  How does a misfit adjust to being among goody-goody two-shoes?  Fairy tale, finishing school adventures abound here for female readers looking for more tropes about coming-of-age and growing up with adversity.  The ending of the story shows how the heroine may be that unique person who gives up something precious (Prince Charming?) to save her twin sister-best buddy.  Even if she is a misfit.

The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau

Jeanne DuPrau has a modern YA classic, coming of age tale in The City of Ember.  If you've seen the Walden steampunk movie, you have to find a copy of the book and read it in its original prose story context.  Since most of the world today promises a forbidding future of wars and exhaustion of resources, not to mention social upheaval, it might be a great idea to read The City of Ember and find out what happens if the last of mankind is secreted into a hidden underground community to live out 200 years with a stash of food and electric power dynamos to last that long.  Then, the return to the surface after all the shit-hits-the-fan has blown over comes with a catch...

In the story, something goes wrong with the calendar-clock and the City of Ember loses track of time while the last safekeeper of the underground community fails to deliver the message of what to do after the 200 years are up. 

Fortunately, a young girl named Lina Mayfleet along with her friend, Doon Harrow, discover a piece of paper that shows "Instructions for Egress" and puzzle out the message while discovering that the current mayor is hoarding all the food.  The dire situation in the City of Ember forces the band of youngsters to uncover the escape route to the surface via the underground river behind the mechanical power dynamo (to avoid impending doom with community supplies running out).  Once they discover the way out, Lina and Doon drop leaflets into the overhead air vents of the city for the remaining citizens to find their way onto the surface world again. 

It is a simple tale that many youngsters today and even adults can relate to--how to deal with extreme adversity and learning to take control of one's life when adults act like children, endangering themselves far more than they think.

His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman

Don't be waylaid by the fact that Catholic nuns staged placard-bearing protests outside movie theaters when the film adaptation of children's book writer, Philip Pullman's The Golden Compass came out.   The Golden Compass is a subversive book (renamed Northern Lights in subsequent reprints) where the lead character, tomboyish Lyra Belacqua defies all authorities and comes into her own as the heroine of the story.  By taking on the secret government which has been removing the souls of children and adults to make them more malleable as enslaved citizens, Lyra does the impossible and saves her world.

All the rassum frassum by pompous Catholic school wardens should be enough to get any young missy interested in the adventures of young Lyra Belacqua, a romping wildchild in possession of a dangerous artifact that holds the key to the safety of their alternate Earth.  The Golden Compass (Northern Lights) can predict the future and only Lyra knows how to read the 'Dust" powered object. 

Lyra's adventures carry her to rescue children being "cut off" from their soulmates--daemons; which are spirit animal sidekicks and a mirror of each child and adult's personality and essentially part of their souls.  It may be this part of the series which Catholic schoolmarms are taking offense at plus the fact that the Divine being in this book series is shown to be just a wisp of hypocrisy who fades away into nothingness, while his fascist angels duel with humans out to redeem their destiny in the alternate Earth. 

Philip Pullman offers a character who stands up for what holds true and is noble purpose above what an evil society will do to preserve power, blind dogma and the hypocrisy of authoritarian prejudice--which is a life lesson in itself for every young girl to experience reading this book.

Un Lun Dun by China Mieville

Un Lun Dun is the second YA novel of China Mieville and has a plot reversal going on: A prophesied heroine, Zanna is put on ice by the evil villains of the story.  It is up to her best friend, the spunky sidekick, fat girl, Deeba, to save the day.  Or the strange world under London (from the title: not London) from a supernatural mutant smog menace that threatens the world above. 

Plenty of scary characters like the boss villain, the sentient and malevolent Smog and trap monsters like the Black Windows, spidery legged windows that devour lives in alternate rooms inside them, hiding a precious artifact needed by the heroines to fight the Smog villain, will entertain girl readers who fancy creepy things. 

Deeba and friends rid London below of the supernatural menace and demand negotiating resident rights and privileges from London above.  Inspired by the children's book, The Phantom Tollbooth, Mieville reimagines the same adventure with a unique perspective on the classic pulp adventure theme: worlds beneath where you live.

For young girls who feel like they are just second fiddle to events and changes and people around them, China Mieville inspires kids by showing them a heroine who picks up from where her friend left off and champions the quest of the undercity dwellers.
  The kids here kick butt and even upend the British government's stooges--who are in cahoots with the mutant Evil Smog entity. 

Fly By Night by Frances Hardinge

Frances Hardinge is one of the most underrated YA and childrens' book writers these days that we have to champion her work more just to make sure readers of all ages don't get shortchanged by bookstores that don't stock her books enough.  Her books are published by the same press (Pan McMillan) that sells China Mieville's new weird books so you know you're in good company.

Fly By Night
is her first novel and features a girl in love with words, named Mosca Mye (where Mosca means Fly in Portugese) and her murderous, pet goose, Saracen.  Both of them go on an adventure exploring an
18th-century, alternate Earth.  Accompanied by a smooth-talking con-artist named Eponymous Clent in a realm where books are dangerous (unless marked with a seal by the local Publishing guild, a book and the words in it are illegal), Mosca is your mousy, smart-aleck heroine whose love for reading gets her in hi-jinks encounters because reading is a rare skill where she lives and not all people are allowed to read or provided books to learn how in her world.

After a fashion, Hardinge's alternate Earth in Fly By Night, where trade guilds are cornering markets, actually mirrors the real world today--where usurious brand licenses and copyright and tech patents are used to restrict wealth generation to a point where you are a crook if you own a book "without the seal of the Publisher's guild." 

Mosca and Clent scheme and scam their way around the world while meeting all sorts of shady characters, racketeers, a crazy Duke, all while accessing forbidden books which hold the future for Mosca and her buddy Clent.
  Frances Hardinge is known as a subversive and smart writer who plays with her character dialogue and her amazing world building skills for some of the most lyrical and memorable storytelling.  She may yet be the next Terry Pratchett with her wry sense of humor and lovably bent characters.

If you've read Terry Pratchett's DiscWorld fantasy series, you should check out ALL of Frances Hardinge's smartly written books and enjoy the one new author, all young girls should be reading for inspiration and for great examples on how writing smart really reads like.

The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi

For young girls growing up, learning the hard way is the last way they want to know more of the world.  Paolo Bacigalupi's The Windup Girl is a sci-fi, biopunk  novel about surviving in a desperate future where everything is lost and few people can really be trusted to be helpful.

Paolo Bacigalupi churns out a tale of the post-apocalypse of capitalism: where fresh food that is not tainted by deadly plant diseases and GMO poisons is the most precious commodity of them all. 

Robot waitress and pleasure-doll, Emiko lives out her days in a Thai nightclub until she meets the person who might save the world.  In Hugo Award winning, The Windup Girl, murderous and treacherous GMO companies are trying desperately to find the worlds' last caches of heritage seeds.  And they will bring down governments to get what they want.

Bacigalupi shows a post-apocalyptic world that has run out of oil and instead relies on wound-spring technology engines powered by manual work of beasts like elephants. Exotic plagues also ravage the crops of this era and affect human populations by causing incurable, terminal afflications.  The heroine is Emiko and the Thai worker, Kanya, who protects the ASEAN country's secret seed bank from getting stolen by the GMO company since Thailand is depicted as the only country where organic food production has been revived with their hardy heritage crops. 

Even with Keiko as the only character the young female reader can identify with as her protagonist in the story
, learning what it means to be human should be an exciting and original adventure over most of the other offbeat, dystopian YA novels out there now.  Experience all the heady environments of a dystopian future: a dark reflection of exisitng real-world GMO agri-industrial brands vying for control of the world's food markets in this award winning novel.

Idoru by William Gibson

William Gibson's Neuromancer may be more of a sci-fi guy's book but his Bridge Series' Idoru is a cyberpunk novels with a female heroine, 14-year-old girl, Chia Pet McKenzie, assigned by her otaku fan club to find out the real score between Japanese idol rock singer Rez, who is rumored to be engaged to marry Rei Toei, a VR celebrity idol (the Idoru) much to the chagrin of Seattle otaku fans. 

Laney is a data analyst fleeing a scandal and hiding in Japan looking for work, following the trail of the Idoru when Chia hires him to help her.  There are powerful dark forces such as the Yakuza influencing the rise of the VR Idoru AI as an entertainment construct and people are caught in the middle of all that in 21st century Tokyo re-imagined from 20 years before.  Gibson wrote Idoru in the 90s.

Gibson may be a challenging read for readers of any age and gender because he has a style of parsing combined with a crime novel storytelling style that disjoints most other first time sci-fi readers weaned on straight forward storytelling. 

Reading books with different writing voices should help young girls sharpen their own reading level and improve comprehension skills.  Reading difficult books can show you a thing or two on how to break the rules often prescribed by academe about literary creative writing.  That said, Gibson is still an awesome storyteller with spunky heroines to inspire girl readers.  

The Iron Dragon's Daughter by Michael Swanwick

Michael Swanwick's The Iron Dragon's Daughter is a gorgeous sci-fi novel.  Partly because many reviewers have illogically disparaged it for being too nihilistic.  Some say the novel has no likable characters--but that's them being boorish and high minded.  What young girls get to read with this sci-fi classic is the adventure of a young changeling girl, Jane who is trapped in her work as a repairman-scavenger-slave in a junkyard salvaging assorted tech.  Jane discovers a decrepified but still mindful junkbody of a sentient, mechanical, evil dragon named Melanchthon, dumped into her workspace

The dragon, Melancthon insinuates itself into the life of Jane and both unlikely partners start a strange love-hate friendship going.  Jane repairs the horrible creature and helps it fly out to assault the lair of the goddess that rules her fairy realm.  While repairing the badass curmudgeon back to health, she seduces and sacrifices friends and lovers to the dragon, gets threatened by corrupt elflords and gets double-crossed by the dragon itself.  In the final confrontation, the goddess of the realm saves her from sure death. 

The story is laced with profanities, drug-using characters--shady Fae characters using each other and double-crossing each other in a dark magic, techworld of Fae lords.  In the realm where Jane scrapes a living, strange creatures get snuffed out viciously and for no reason at all.

One reviewer gave The Iron Dragon's Daugther such a bad review, saying it wasn't appropriate for young readers for all the malice and wrongdoing going on.  Ignore that.  You're not reading Chicken Soup for the Soul but a dark science-fantasy story, where you get to enjoy reading about one nasty dragon and the coming-of-age story of the brave and strong, changeling girl that brought it back to life in a strange magical realm.  Cool stuff.

The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman

There are young girls out there who may feel ostracized for being different.  Being gay is still not without its stigma among narrow minded peers, brought up by parents who will never mean well if they are religious bigots at heart.  Books that engage readers into accepting people as human beings in spite of being different should be good reading for young girls too and there might be no better book than that than The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman.

The Gaiman adaptation of the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale offers a tale of Snow White about to get married, yet turning down her beau at the last minute after hearing that a princess from a nearby kingdom has been cursed with sleep for 70 years running.   Snow White takes her three dwarfs to find a way to free the sleeping princess trapped in a thorn forest, covered castle and fights an assortment of waylaying brigands: "zombies."

Gaiman's story should be a keepsake only your cool grandma would give her gay granddaughter.
  Even if you're not gay, this reimagined fairy tale is one to add to your reading collection, better than another ditzy pulp romance novel.

Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

Few writers and books can lay claim to being "Hotter than Potter" among YA and children's book authors but the late Diana Wynne Jones' most beloved book, Howl's Moving Castle is a timeless magical fantasy that has been adapted as an animated movie by no less than Studio Ghibli's Hayao Miyazaki himself.

The story revolves around an age-old conflict between two powerful witches and sorcerer, Howl, a ruffian sorceror with a magical walking Castle, kept together by his star-soul, Calcifer.  Caught in the web of the witches' schemes, young Sophie is turned by black magic glamour into an old woman by day but at night she turns into her young self: a curse that forces her to hook up with Howl as his servant and help Howl put himself together and find his human side again. 

At the end, Howl saves himself by restoring Calcifer to the stars and keeps his soul. And the two people who started the story with a love-hate situation get to live happily ever after.  Watch the anime movie after reading the book and know that both will probably be among your desert island must-haves until you pass them along as heirlooms to a young friend or to your granddaughters.

Moonwise by Greer Ilene Gilman

What you like as poetry often reflects the kind of character you have.  If young girls want to read a poetic, fantasy written by a female author, look no further than Greer Ilene Gilman's first novel, Moonwise.  Gilman's prose stylist novel comes highly touted by writers ranging from Michael Moorcock to Diana Wynne Jones and Ursula K. LeGuin. 

Poetry is a romance of finding the right words to convey a thought or idea or even a story and theme that resonates the right kind of feels--which impressionable young readers take to with avid enthusiasm.  That should give you an idea of what to expect with the prose style of Moonwise.

Moonwise is a strange novel told in a style that is very difficult read (for even those who like prose stylist authors) because Gilman's writing has no discernible meter, rhyme or coherent structure.  The poetry of Moonwise resides in the descriptions that are strung together as images and scenes going back and forward as plot and story--the book's story is delivered in the style of an Old English folktale and uses the mannerisms of such tellings:  fever dream descriptions that have to be read slowly so you can follow the story, even if you have to reread  passages over to figure out what's going on. 

Gilman's fantasy story is about two friends, Silvie and Ariane telling each other stories and then suddenly finding themselves inside the winter realm of a powerful ice queen, who snares Ariance, forcing Sylvie to wander the winter realm to rescue her best mate.  Along the way, she encounters all sorts of folkloric characters from Scottish and Irish mythology that aid her or endanger her search for Ariane.  Just for the beautiful play of language stringing together the tale of two dear friends who'd give their lives for each other, the effort to read Moonwise will be precious. Savor every image.

The Clockwork Girl by Athena Villaverde

Girls who love Hayao Miyazaki movies and maybe Tim Burton's kooky movie characters will have something in common with books by Athena Villaverde--a wrtier of Bizarro YA fiction.  Her tales are filled with strange juxtapositions of old folktale themes that are told in absurdist fashion (think Tim Burton).  Villaverde's first collection of stories, Clockwork Girl holds the core themes that appeal to young girls alike: coming-of-age, dealing with hardships, falling out of love, infatuation.  If your friend is a teenage or tweener girl wanting to read adventure stories of peculiar characters set up in a world where they overcome setbacks yet still be on the short end of everything--and learn it is not a bad thing too, they will want tor read a writer like Athena Villaverde.

Clockwork Girl is about Pichi, a human girl turned into a brass doll with a wind-up heart.  Sold to a toymaker when she was still human, Pichi is rebuilt into a clockwork doll and becomes a pricey Christmas present to a rich little girl, losing her memories and her real name, all Pichi knows is that she loves her new owner and wants to live with her forever...until her owner outgrows her toy.  Bizarro stories don't necessarily have good endings and Athena's other books, Starfish Girl and Caterpillar Girl are of the same bent.

If you have to read anything hipster or a book that no adult will ever like with the same enthusiasm as you--given that Bizarro is profanely weird and never politically correct--Athena Villaverde will fulfill that niche in your book collection.
  You can smile when someone else will sneer at you for reading YA coming-of-age fantasy and even tell them it's just as good as Divergent.

The Ragwitch by Garth Nix

Don't be scared of Annabelle, the horror movie about a possessed girl's doll, until you've read this classic YA horror gem from Garth Nix, The Ragwitch.  It is his first novel and is all about the adventure of two siblings who encounter a strange doll in the desert which turns out to be harboring an evil entity out to cross into the earth and bring harm as it did in its own realm.  Julia and Paul both use their courage and wits to outsmart a vile witch-queen who has massacred entire villages in her realm, the witch possesses Julia's body and her brother Paul crosses over into the otherworld to find help from former enemies of the Ragwitch to free Julia from the clutches of the evil matriarch.

Reviewers who have read Garth Nix's work may recommend his more recent and more successful novels like Sabriel and the book series, Keys to the Kingdom as more creatively inspired and more inventive but since we Pinoys love horror, The Ragwitch fulfills all of what young girls want to read about a doll possessed with the most evil force of witchy-poo you'll ever read:  A coming-of-age novel, with quests, reversals and a brave heroine outwitting an evil foe. A unique take on a damsel in distress, Julia with her stronger mind, beating the sinister plans of her malevolent captor .

Lost Souls by Poppy Z. Brite

Forget Anne Rice.  Former exotic dancer turned horror novelist (and a transgender person, now named Martin) Poppy Z. Brite is a very intelligent writer whose sensual horror novel, Lost Souls, has guy heroes and plenty of "bro-mance" going on.  Girls do have a benign fantasy about among boys in love with each other--or at least a hint of it.  Brite's horror classic is about three vampires hunting down one of their own misbegotten son, Nothing, after a Mardi Gras tryst with a local Goth chick.  Nothing is raised in New Orleans, grows tired of the locals and seeks out his favorite rock band, Lost Souls, whose members--Ghost and Steve help him avoid being vampire mulch.  Nothing doesn't know he is being hunted and tracked down by his murderous father Zillah for his own nefarious appetites.

Poppy Z. Brite has edited several anthologies of Vampire erotica already and young female readers who want bad guys written as the doofuses they know them to be will find Brite a comrade in arms.  She writes sexy vampire novels and short stories and is unapologetic about it, and her work is regarded by both fans and fellow horror writers as being its own beautiful monster--she is very visceral in her descriptions and portrayals of her characters.  Girls who love horror and stories about guy heroes who have an intimate romantic relationship with each other will enjoy reading Lost Souls.  No one can write  sexy horror with and edge like Brite.

Smilla's Sense of Snow by Peter Hoeg

Crime fiction may seem like a strange genre for young girls to like, but not after picking up Peter Hoeg's tight, noirish sci-fi infused thriller about a woman who finds her neighbor, a 6-year-old, urchin boy, helplessly murdered to cover up an unholy discovery of a chemical company discovering an alien object in the ice of Greenland and keeping it under wraps.

Smilla herself is an Inuit-Greenlander in Copenhagen who works as a specialization scientist on the aspects of snow and is drawn into a project where a mega-corporation is plotting schemes using its discovery of an energy resource from an 1800s meteor hitting Greenland. 

To hide their discovery, the agents of the company has been murdering people by implanting them with a prehistoric arctic worm that causes toxic shock in its host--another secret tech discovered by this Copenhagen mining company.  The book features a smart, and independent brave woman who honors her firend, the young boy, by trying to unravel his murder.  If young girls want to read a beautifully rendered depiction of an intelligent heroine who is honorable, brave and also sensual in her own manner, Peter Hoeg's Smilla's Sense of Snow is a gripping page-turner of a detective-crime novel.  You can't have a better role model for geeky girls in Smilla.

The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls

Jeannette Walls is the former MSNBC gossip writer who trashed the high society of New York and the country.  In 2005 she wrote The Glass Castle, a stark memoir from the POV of a child growing up, about surviving in the Appalachian wilds growing up with bipolar parents who were unable to pay the rent and moved from place to place, dragging their family into abandoned desert sheds to live off-grid in one of strangest but truest coming of age stories you'd only think would happen in Hispanic  or Asian telenovelas.

The memoir reads like a strange, urban fairy tale which takes us into a cross between a Mosquito Coast-like, off-grid, coming-of-age adventure of young Jeannette to survive on her own as a young heroine and role model for both of her bewildered siblngs.  The bookends with Jeannette striking out on her own, moving to New York with her sister and brother, leaving her parents and and living the American dream--Bonanza! is the word her brother uses to describe their monthly family lunches: with spaghetti and meatballs, wine and a pork roast--when before, as described in the book, they would be scrounging the dumpster for food. 

The title of the book comes from a white lie made by her father, Rex, about building a Glass Castle for the family and just needing to strike gold in the desert to make it all happen. 

For young girls who like coming-of-age stories, The Glass Castle offers a true-to-life, salt-of-the-earth survival story they will never forget.  Jeannette Walls has since written another book--this time a fiction story about a similar coming of age adventure of a young girl and a bonkers mom and her weird sister--more good stuff to collect from this author.

The Juliette Society by Sasha Grey

Older or mid-teen girls who will buy a trashy romance novel anyway, just for the heck of it--no matter what other people say about them, may want to look at the erotica novel written by former adult video star, Sasha Grey

Her novel, The Juliette Society has been bashed by erotica reviewers as being too lite on the good stuff and putting too much fluff in to show she can write--but that is not why girls (wanting a peek at what their older sisters or brothers read for fun) should read Sasha Grey's hyped book.  Girls are always inquisitive about women coming into their own and no dogma should stop them from gleaning insights from a novel like The Juliette Society.  Or trashy romance novels for that matter.  Mills & Boon and Harlequinn romances aren't cause for worry for delinquent behavior--especially if all that feamle readers want to know is what kind of behaviors are not safe for women by reading steamy romances.

The Juliette Society has just enough of what local romance writers call "steamy moments" but it works these into more story than just lurid "how-to-enjoy-lovemaking" masquerading as a novel.  Film student, Catherine is invited to join a secret club of elite and powerful people called the Juliette Society--where all desires are fulfilled as part of the secret club's libertine activities.  But once you join the group there is no turning back. 

The premise is kinky enough, with a hint of danger and the mature content all girls want to know about how women cope with sex in their lives.  But these are set in the safe confines of a story by a writer who knows her stuff and will not push readers to be careless with their own sexual identities. 

Grey is a good storyteller but may disappoint reader fans looking for more steamy moments than story moments. 
If an older teen wants to know what her twentysomething peers might be reading about sex--a good book to hide in one's stash may be Grey's first novel.

There you have it, nineteen books for young girls to read which may not be in the recommended lists of other book review websites or media sites but we chose these for what they offer girl readers--strong heroines who go against the flow, yet are not wrong for doing it.  Different writing voices and writing styles.  And a range of authors from veteran, fantasy scribes to first time authors and even bestseller writers who have great books for a young female reader.


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