As a middle school and high school English teacher, I often get requests for good book lists, often for girls because discerning mothers have found a lot of young adult fiction inappropriate.
The trick in finding good girl material revolves mainly around the issue of romance and self-esteem, which are generally the themes holding adolescent female fiction together. These themes deserve even more consideration for a girl who is reading above her reading level and might still be an elementary-aged child. Romances shape the way girls think about themselves, boys, and the process of dating and falling in love. Finding the right guy and getting married are pretty important choices, so helping girls develop an accurate perspective is paramount.
Below are some ideas and observations about teen and pre-teen girl lit, as well as a long list. Feel free to add your recommendations in the comment section. Advanced teen readers will be ready for adult literature. (If the advice below is indicative of pre-teen romance novels, you know what to expect in adult romances.)
Here are some time-proven one-liners for those children who have a retort for everything. And your child won’t require therapy some day because you said them. He might even be qualified to give therapy.
10. Life’s not fair.
9. Are you sure that’s the story you want to go with?
8. I brought you into this world; I can take you out. (stolen from Bill Cosby!)
7. I can’t wait until you have children.
6. Let’s push the rewind button and try saying that again.
5. Your siblings are preparing you for life in the real world.
4. Someday you’ll thank me.
3. I don’t care if you like me; I don’t always like you, either. But I’ll always love you.
2. Just so you know, I’m always praying that when you do wrong that you will get caught.
1. When you’ve stayed up all night praying for me—then I’ll take your advice.