I am celebrating the characters in middle grade and young adult novels who make strong impressions. When you read a lot of novels, there is the wonderful opportunity to “meet” many incredible characters. First, it was these 25 boys that I wanted to highlight. Now, it’s time for the girls!
These are the female characters who have stayed with me. I sometimes worry about them. I stop and remember their actions. The big and bold things and the quietly brave. I admire their choices, the way they move on from mistakes, their soul searching. I honour these 25 girls who live beyond the pages of the books they live in.
Sophie in Endangered written by Eliot Schrefer
Francesca Schnell in The Summer of Letting Go written by Gae Polisner
Flora Belle Buckman in Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures written by Kate DiCamillo
Marlee in The Lions of Little Rock written by Kristin Levine
Jewel in Bird written by Crystal Chan
Comfort Snowberger in Each Little Bird That Sings written by Deborah Wiles
Fern in See you at Harry’s written by Jo Knowles
Vera in Please Ignore Vera Dietz written by A.S. King
Georgie Burkhardt in One Came Home written by Amy Timberlake
May in May B. written by Caroline Starr Rose
Hattie Brooks in Hattie Big Sky written by Kirby Larson
Calpurnia Virginia Tate in The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate written by Jacqueline Kelly
Lucy in Half a Chance written by Cynthia Lord
Josie in Out of the Easy written by Ruta Sepetys
Stargirl Caraway in Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
Gloriana (Glory) June Hemphill in Glory Be written by Augusta Scattergood
Gabi Hernandez in Gabi, A Girl in Pieces written by Isabel Quintero
Turtle in Turtle in Paradise written by Jennifer L. Holm
Liesel Meminger in The Book Thief written by Markus Zusak
Georgina Hayes in How to Steal a Dog written by Barbara O’Connor
Hayley Kincain in The Impossible Knife of Memory written by Laurie Halse Anderson
Rose in Rain Reign written by Ann M. Martin
Carley Connors in One for the Murphys written by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Piddy Sanchez in Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick your Ass written by Meg Medina
Willow Chance in Counting by 7s written by Holly Goldberg Sloan
Which characters would make your list?
So many fabulous titles! I’ve read 14. My top seven: Hattie Big Sky, One for the Murphys, Lions of Little Rock, The Book Thief, Each Little Bird that Sings, Rain Reign, and Counting by 7s. Can’t wait to share these Top 25 Boys and Top 25 Girls Who Stand Out at our book club this week.
So pleased Ramona! And lovely that you spotted many of your favourites!
Great choices! I’d add Heidi in So B It by Sarah Weeks and Lucy Whipple in the Ballad of Lucy Whipple by Karen Cushman (actually all of Karen Cushman’s main girl characters are amazing)
Great ideas! It would be easy to create a list of 50 titles!
Carrie- Thank you for this –I’m honored to have Glory join these girls. I also love how you call them inspiring, stand-outs, characters who stick with you. Great post. Now I’m heading over to find those 25 boys you remember. 🙂
Thank you so much for the comment Augusta! So many of these characters feel so real to me – I wanted to find a way to honour them.
Both of these posts are simply phenomenal. I can’t wait to do mine! I am going to have to work hard not to overlap with your lists, but I think we have some of the same inspirational girls and boys! Thank you for this wonderful idea. Kellee and I can’t wait to join in on the fun. 🙂
I am so thrilled that you and Kellee want to participate in this too! I think the overlap will just speak to how incredible certain characters really are! We often recommend back and forth to each other so I would be shocked if we didn’t have overlap.
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I so love this idea as a way of sharing titles through the characters who have made an impression… and am thrilled to see TSOLG and Francesca Frankie Beans on it! I’ve been basically sharing the post everywhere. 😀
Thank you Gae – this means so much. I really enjoyed putting this post together. It was like reaching out to old friends.
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I’m revisiting your list, and I am so happy to see some girls on here that I sadly left off mine! 🙂
Thank you again for the inspiration!
I am so pleased that you and Ricki joined in! Loved your lists!
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What a great list! Thank you!