The list author says: "This list suggests books you and your daughter can read together. It's not a filtered list of "safe" books, but a great way to find stories that teach valuable lessons and spark interesting discussions. Visit WhatShouldSheRead.com for more suggestions."
"Esperanza Rising is a very real story about a carefree girl whose eyes are opened to the world around her under the most difficult of circumstances. Learning to see the value in others, she also learns to see the value in herself."
"Holes is a quirky tale of mystery and adventure about the rewards of determination and loyalty. Through his dogged loyalty, Stanley overcomes his family’s curse and finds his own destiny. It won the Newbery Award in 1999."
"The Invention of Hugo Cabret is a beautifully told story, half graphic novel and half traditional book, about a young man searching for vocation. In helping an old man recover his calling, he may just uncover his own. It won the Caldecott Medal in 2007."
"Mandy is a lovely story about one girl’s search for love and family. Edwards’ descriptions of Mandy’s hard work and the beauty of the outdoors set the scene for a simple story about how things—even very special ones—just aren’t enough without a clear conscience and people we care about. Julie Edwards is a pen name for Academy-Award-winning actress Julie Andrews."
"The Outcasts of 19 Schulyer Place is an homage to a passing world where neighborhoods and personal expression triumph over by-laws and control. Margaret learns the value of standing up to save what she loves--and that things don't always turn out the way we expect."
"Queenie Peavy is an incredibly real novel about a girl on the cusp of growing up who has to decide for herself what kind of woman she wants to be. Does she want to use her father’s sins as an excuse to be lazy and destructive? Or does she want to live her own life, free from the shadow of crime and poverty?"
"Red Kayak is a compelling, first-person narrative about a teenage boy learning to make serious decisions about right and wrong. Through Cummings’ subtle prose, Brady’s difficult decision whether to protect his friends or tell the truth isn’t an easy one for Brady—or the reader."
"Savvy is a quirky story about a little girl coming to grips with becoming a young woman—and about the things that make us all just a little bit special. Law compassionately narrates the very beginning of a child’s slow, self-conscious passage into adulthood in a wonderfully believable way. Savvy was a Newbery Honor Book in 2009."
"Byron’s coming-of-age story is beautifully told through the funny narrative voice of his little brother. The Birmingham church bombing helps Kenny see that real family love shines through even the darkest night. The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 was a Newberry Honor Book in 1996."
"Where the Mountain Meets the Moon tells the exciting story of a young girl’s quest for a better life—and the surprising answer she finds at the end of her journey. Unlike many quest-narratives for young people, Lin captures the pain of a separated family and a girl’s longing to return home. Where the Mountain Meets the Moon was a Newbery Honor Book in 2010."
"The Witch of Blackbird Pond is a wonderful story about coping with change and learning to be true to ourselves. Through the gentle affection of the Widow Tupper, Kit learns to find her vocation in life—and in love."