Books to read on International Day of the Girl Child

International Day of the Girl Child aims to highlight and address the needs and challenges girls face, while promoting girls' empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights. In honour of the 2019 theme ‘GirlForce: Unscripted and Unstoppable’ we recommend our favourite books that celebrate girls who dream, achieve, break boundaries, overcome barriers, innovate and initiate.


Sisters: Venus & Serena Williams by Jeanette Winter

This delightful picture book follows the Williams sisters from their Californian childhood all the way to their tennis triumphs and even through to their battles to overcome injury and maintain their careers. Sisters: Venus & Serena Williams celebrates Venus and Serena’s hard work and prowess on the court, but also highlights the importance of their sisterly bond, loving family support and even their flamboyant fashion sense.

For ages 3 and up.


Astro Girl by Ken Wilson-Max

Astrid has always loved stars and space, and her biggest dream is to become an astronaut. Daddy helps her prepare for her future career by pointing out the science experiments she might have to run in space and the strange food she’ll have to eat. They make rocket-shaped cookies and Daddy even throws Astrid into the air to help her experience zero G! When its time for Mummy to finish work, they go to the air base and Astrid excitedly greets her astronaut mother. This exuberant picture book about the dreams of a toddler finishes with some information about five notable women astronauts.

For ages 3 and up.


Japarrika Rises by Tiwi College Alalinguwi Jarrakarlinga, Shelley Ware & David Lawrence

Kay-Bell is desperate to play in the AFL Women’s League, but there are many obstacles ahead for the footy star. Will she get all her jobs done, escape her mean aunty and overcome her own self-doubt to make it all the way? And with the help of her brother, two best friends and her spirit bird – Japarrika – will her dreams come true? This unique book was authored by seven students from Tiwi College Alalinguwi Jarrakarlinga in just five days. Working with facilitators and mentors Shelley Ware and David Lawrence, the students participated in writing, illustrating, designing and editing the book, as part of the Indigenous Literacy Foundation’s publishing program.

For ages 8 and up.


The Hackathon (Girl Geeks, Book 1) by Alex Miles

When Hamsa’s class holds a hackathon, Hamsa gets thrown into a group with Eve, Niki and Maggie - girls that she doesn’t know very well. Hamsa has to get used to working with her group fast, and learn how to code, set up online message feeds, and use unfamiliar tech acronyms and jargon. The Geek Girls series is created in partnership with Girl Geek Academy, a group of skilled digital professionals who are passionate about increasing the number of women with successful STEM careers.

For ages 9 and up.


Greta’s Story: The Schoolgirl Who Went on Strike to Save the Planet by Valentina Camerini & Veronica Veci Carratello

Greta Thunberg was only fifteen when she decided she couldn’t ignore her concerns about the environment, or quell her feelings that politicians were refusing to act. Instead of going to school, Greta went on strike in front of Sweden’s parliament building. Greta’s protest began the worldwide School Strike 4 Climate movement, which has put young people at the forefront of environmental activism and garnered support from millions of people around the world. As well as telling Greta’s story in an engaging narrative style, this book also includes information on the science of the climate change, practical steps kids can take in their own lives and further reading to do.

For ages 9 and up.


I Am Change by Suzy Zail

Lilian is a young girl growing up in rural Uganda. Lilian has dreams and ambitions for her own life - she wishes to continue her education, write stories, and become a teacher - but others around her have very different ideas about what her future should involve. I Am Change is a fictional work based on Zail’s research and personal interviews with thirty young Ugandan women from rural communities. It covers topics such as forced marriage, assault and female circumcision with care and sensitivity.

For ages 13 and up.

Leanne Hall is a children’s and YA specialist at Readings Kids. She also writes books for children and young adults.

Astro Girl

Astro Girl

Ken Wilson-Max

$24.99Buy now

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