Current Booklist

Rise: A Feminist Book Project for Ages 0-18 has been promoting quality feminist literature for young readers since 2002 as a part of the Feminist Task Force and the Social Responsibilities Round Table

Introduction:

“The future will look exactly as the past if we don’t start making changes.” (Schneider, The Other Merlin)

The right to a fair and equitable contract is a feminist value. Rise: A Feminist Book Project supports collective bargaining and stands in solidarity with workers across the publishing industry.

“They can’t close their eyes and their / ears to us any longer. They can’t pretend / we don’t exist. They can’t plead ignorance / to our problems because we are here, / we embody the needs of all workers. / We are on the rise.” (Salazar, A Seed in the Sun)

In a year haunted by the choices that have been forcibly taken from women, girls, and those most vulnerable, there is an urgent need for literature to speak loudly to each individual’s right to define themselves and write their own narrative.

In the past year, Roe v. Wade was demolished under undemocratic and violent circumstances, leaving people who might face difficult decisions about their bodily autonomy feeling hopeless and dehumanized. 

“To people who are wondering why I am saying this so vividly and so loud, it is because it’s time that we hear this… it’s time that we are uncomfortable, because comfort has been disastrous.” (Jallow, Toufah: The Woman Who Inspired an African #MeToo Movement)

It is of utmost importance to amplify the voices of those who are doing the work to preserve access to abortion services, especially under the most challenging of circumstances. We cherish and uplift stories by and about folks who’ve had their bodily rights stripped away and will work tirelessly to advocate for continued access to abortion services for all.

“The voices we amplify can be even more important than our own.” (Doll, That’s Debatable)

Just as control is being asserted over our bodies, censorship attempts to control which stories are shared. 

“Abortion is a political gale to control bodies. Reproductive justice is bigger than abortion and connects the dots in Black lives related to health, autonomy, and freedom.” (Moore, introduction to The Billboard)

“When you’re a young woman, simply having a body is a hazard.” (Sánchez, Crying in the Bathroom)

Communities across America are facing ceaseless attacks on books about LGBTQIAP2S+ folks, race, gender identity, and sexual health. It’s vital to reject bigotry, racism, and transphobic attempts at censorship and ensure that books are available to every reader.

“Putting my own representation, my own images forward, that’s powerful in itself.” (Hall, The Gaps)

These stories celebrate the vast experiences and diverse voices of girls and women who make space for their own passions and dreams. 

“The dreams of girls turn into the lives of women.” (Brown, El cuarto turquesa/The Turquoise Room)

Committee:

Jean-Louise Zancanella (co-chair), College of Western Idaho, ID; Allison Staley (co-chair), Lake Oswego Public Library, OR; Sara Saxton, Wasilla Public Library, AK; Vicki Pietrus, Niles West High School, IL; Cynthia Medrano, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA; Laura Simeon, Kirkus Reviews; Ari Nussbaum, Hayward Public Library, CA ; Emma Carbone, Brooklyn Public Library, NY; Suzan Alteri, California State University Fresno, CA; Isolda Page, Lisle Library District, IL; and Elena Pereira, The Park School, MA

2023 Booklist from Rise: A Feminist Book Project

An asterisk (*) indicates that a book is one of our Top Ten Titles.

Early Readers-Fiction

AlHathloul, Lina and Mishra-Newbery, Uma. Loujain Dreams of Sunflowers. Illus. by Rebecca Green. 2022. 40p. Astra/mineditionUS, $18.99 (9781662650642). PreS-Gr. 3.
Loujain AlHathloul dreams of flying to see the sunflowers but girls aren’t allowed to have wings.

Amann, Skylaar. Smile, Sophia. 2022. 32p. Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends, $18.99 (9781250816955). K-Gr. 3.
Sophia loves paleontology and digging but not smiling on command!

*Amescua, Gloria. Child of the Flower-Song People: Luz Jiménez, Daughter of the Nahua. Illus. by Duncan Tonatiuh. 2022. 48p. Abrams/Abrams Books for Young Readers, $18.99 (9781419740206). Gr. 1-5.
A picture-book biography of Jiménez, an Indigenous Nahua woman from Mexico who preserved her culture through craft and instruction. She modeled for numerous artists of the 19th century.

Anand, Shelly & Nomi Ellenson. I Love My Body Because. Illus. by Erika Rodriguez Medina. 2022. 32p. Simon & Schuster, $18.99 (9781534494954). PreS-Gr. 3.
A picture book showcasing different bodies and how wonderful they are in their own ways.

*Brown, Monica. El cuarto turquesa / The Turquoise Room. Illus. by Adriana M. Garcia. Tr. by Cinthya Miranda-McIntosh. 2022. 40p. Lee & Low/Children’s Book Press, $20.95 (9780892394357). Gr. 1-5.
Written as a gift to her daughters, this is a story of how women in the author’s family passed down the confidence to dream, explore, and create.

Chowdhury, Radhiah. The Katha Chest. Illus. by Lavanya Naidu. 2022. 40p. Simon & Schuster/Salaam Reads, $17.99 (9781665903905). PreS-Gr. 2.
Asiya learns the histories of the women in her family through the kathas (quilts) her Nanu has created over the years.

David-Sax, Pauline. Everything in Its Place: A Story of Books and Belonging. Illus. by Charnelle Pinkney Barlow. 2022. 40p. Random/Doubleday, $17.99 (9780593378823). PreS-Gr. 3.
An introverted book lover spends recess helping the school librarian; with the support of a sisterhood of bikers—and a volume of Mary Oliver’s poems—she befriends a kindred spirit.

Gabeira, Maya. Maya and the Beast. Illus. by Ramona Kaulitzki. 2022. 40p. Abrams/Abrams, $18.99 (9781419760006). K-Gr. 3.
A story based on Big Wave surfer Maya Gabeira’s childhood and how she learned to surf despite people telling her surfing wasn’t for girls.

Goade, Michaela. Berry Song. 2022. 40p. Hachette/Little, Brown and Company, $18.99 (9780316494175). PreS-Gr. 3.
A young Indigenous girl learns about her relationship to nature and the land as her grandmother takes her to collect berries and fish.

Hale, Shannon. This Book is Not For You! Illus. by Tracy Subisak. 2022. 40p. Penguin/Dial, $18.99 (9781984816856). PreS-Gr. 3.
A child is repeatedly denied his choices at the bookmobile because the driver believes only girls should read books about girls.

McClintick, Joanna. ‘Twas the Night Before Pride. Illus. by Juana Medina. 2022. 32p. Candlewick, $17.99 (9781536213430). PreS-Gr. 3.
A child recalls the story of the first ever Pride march the night before their baby sibling’s first Pride.

Rahman, Bahram. A Sky-Blue Bench. Illus. by Peggy Collins. 2021. 32p. Pajama, $18.95 (9781772782226). PreS-Gr. 3.
Aria, a young Afghan amputee with a prosthetic “helper leg”, builds her own bench so that she doesn’t have to sit uncomfortably on the classroom floor.

Srinivasan, Divya. What I Am. 2021. 40p. Penguin/Viking, $17.99 (9780593204016). PreS-Gr. 2.
A young narrator explores her identity after being asked, “What are you?”

Tarpley, Natasha Anastasia. The Me I Choose to Be. Illus. by Regis and Kahran Bethencourt. 2021. 40p. Little, Brown, $17.99 (9780316461542). PreS-Gr. 3.
A photographic picture book showcasing the multiple dimensions of Black and brown children’s personalities, talents, creativity, imaginations, dreams, and more!

Theodore, Adrea. A History of Me. Illus. by Erin K. Robinson. 2022. 32p. Holiday House/Neal Porter, $18.99 (9780823442577). PreS-Gr. 3.
A mother recounts her experiences being the only Black girl in her class and remembers her ancestors’ strength.

Văn, Mượn Thị. I Love You Because I Love You. Illus. by Jessica Love. 2022. 32p. HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen, $17.99 (9780062894595). PreS-Gr. 3.
A call-and-response picture book with many of the reasons, both big and small, for why you might love someone and how you might say it aloud.

Vandever, Daniel W. Herizon. Illus. by Corey Begay. 2021. 32p. South of Sunrise Creative, $20.00 (9781737496403). PreS-Gr. 3.
A young Diné girl retrieves her grandmother’s flock of sheep with the help of a Sanii scarf.

Wentt, Elissa. I Love My Beautiful Hair. 2022. 20p. Scholastic/Cartwheel, $8.99 (9781338763157). PreS-K.
EJ, a Black child, takes her first trip to the hair salon with her mother and grandmother.

Wilson-Trudeau, Marty and Phoenix Wilson. Phoenix Gets Greater. Illus. by Megan Kyak-Monteith. 2022. 24p. Second Story, $21.95 (9781772602531). Gr. K-3.
Phoenix is embraced and celebrated by his family as he learns a name for his Two-Spirit Indigenous identity.

Woollvin, Bethan. Three Little Vikings. 2022. 32p. Holiday House/Peachtree, $17.99 (9781682634561). K-Gr. 3.
Three little Viking girls know what the problem is, but their chieftain won’t listen to them.

Youngblood, Shay. Mama’s Home. Illus. by Lo Harris. 2022. 40p. Random/Make Me A World, $18.99 (9780593180228). PreS-Gr. 3.
For a child living with a single mother, home can also be where your chosen family lives, where you go on adventures, and spend time together.

Early Readers-Nonfiction

Alary, Laura. The Astronomer Who Questioned Everything: The Story of Maria Mitchell. Illus. by Ellen Rooney. 2022. 36p. Kids Can, $18.99 (9781525303487). PreS-Gr. 3.
Nineteenth-century astronomer Mitchell defied societal norms to become a celebrated scientist and educator.

Boxer, Elisa. Splash!: Ethelda Bleibtrey Makes Waves of Change. Illus by Elizabeth Baddeley. 2022. 32p. Sleeping Bear, $17.99 (9781534111431). Gr. 1-4.
Bleibtrey survived polio as a teenager to become an accomplished athlete and nurse. She helped to end outdated and sexist laws restricting women swimmers.

Brown, Tameka Fryer. Not Done Yet: Shirley Chisholm’s Fight for Change. Illus. by Nina Crews. 2022. 32p. Lerner/Millbrook, $20.99 (9781728420080). Gr. 1-4.
A verse picture book introduces readers to Chisholm’s life and legacy.

Bryant, Jen. Fall Down Seven Times, Stand Up Eight: Patsy Takemoto Mink and the Fight for Title IX. Illus. by Toshiki Nakamura. 2022. 48p. HarperCollins/Quill Tree, $17.99 (9780062957221). PreS-Gr. 3.
To ensure everyone had access to educational choices, Mink became a lawyer and congresswoman. She then created Title IX, a law requiring schools to treat all genders equally.

Joy, Angela. Choosing Brave: How Mamie Till-Mobley and Emmett Till Sparked the Civil Rights Movement. Illus. by Janelle Washington. 2022. 64p. Macmillan/Roaring Brook, $19.99 (9781250220950) Gr. 3-7.
A biography of Till-Mobley, mother of Emmett Till, and her impact on the Civil Rights Movement.

*Madison, Megan and Jessica Ralli. Yes! No!: A First Conversation About Consent. Illus. by Isabel Roxas. 2022. 40p. Penguin/Rise x Penguin Workshop, $8.99 (9780593383322). K-Gr. 2.
A thoughtful and inclusive approach to discussing consent both for young children and their grownups.

McCully, Emily Arnold. Taking Off: Airborne with Mary Wilkins Ellis. 2022. 40p. Holiday House/Margaret Ferguson, $18.99 (9780823449668). PreS-Gr. 3.
Ellis joined the Air Transport Auxiliary in Great Britain as a young woman, piloting and testing brand-new warplanes.

McDonnell, Christine. Sanctuary: Kip Tiernan and Rosie’s Place, the Nation’s First Shelter for Women. Illus. by Victoria Tentler-Krylov. 2022. 40p. Candlewick, $18.99 (9781536211290). Gr. 2-5.
Tiernan created the first shelter for houseless women, establishing a safe and dignified community while advocating for people living in poverty.

Nickel, Sandra. Breaking Through the Clouds: The Sometimes Turbulent Life of Meteorologist Joanne Simpson. Illus. by Helena Perez Garcia. 2022. 48p. Abrams/Abrams Books for Young Readers, $19.99 (9781419749568). K-Gr. 3.
Simpson became the first woman to earn her PhD in meteorology and make significant advancements in the field that influence how we learn about weather today.

Rockliff, Mara. A Perfect Fit: How Lena “Lane” Bryant Changed the Shape of Fashion. Illus. by Juana Martinez-Neal. 2022. 32p. HarperCollins/Clarion, $17.99, (9780358125433). PreS-Gr. 3.
An illustrated biography of the founder of the brand Lane Bryant, who introduced the concept of plus-size clothing to the fashion world.

Rockliff, Mara. The Girl Who Could Fix Anything: Beatrice Shilling, World War II Engineer. Illus. by Daniel Duncan. 2021. 48p. Candlewick, $23.99 (9781536212525). K-Gr. 3.
Shilling spent her career being an exceptional problem solver and engineer but never earned the respect she deserved.

Rockliff, Mara. Sweet Justice: Georgia Gilmore and the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Illus. by R. Gregory Christie. 2022. 40p. Random/Random House Studio, $18.99 (9781524720643). PreS-Gr. 3.
Gilmore became a vital community organizer for the civil rights movement when she nourished her community through food and by providing a safe space.

Rhuday-Perkovich, Olugbemisola. Mae Makes a Way: The True Story of Mae Reeves, Hat & History Maker. 2022. 48p. Random/Crown, $18.99 (9780525645856). Gr. 2-5.
A picture-book biography of Reeves: milliner, fashion designer, and civil rights activist.

Sanderson, Ruth. A Storm of Horses: The Story of Artist Rosa Bonheur. 2022. 40p. Interlink/Crocodile, $19.95 (9781623718480). PreS-Gr. 3.
Bonheur painted the world as she saw it: rough, natural, and free, despite living in a world that expected tame gentility from women and their work.

Schofield-Morrison, Connie. Stitch by Stitch: Elizabeth Hobbs Keckly Sews Her Way to Freedom. Illus. by Elizabeth Zunon. 2021. 48p. Holiday House, $18.99 (9780823439638). Gr. 3-5.
A picture-book biography of Keckly, an enslaved woman and seamstress who buys her own and her son’s freedom.

Soontornvat, Christina. A Life of Service: The Story of Senator Tammy Duckworth. Illus. by Dow Phumiruk. 2022. 48p. Candlewick, $18.99 (9781536222050). Gr. K-5.
The story of Duckworth’s life and commitment to service, first in the armed forces and then as the first Thai American member of Congress.

Stiefel, Chana. The Tower of Life: How Yaffa Eliach Rebuilt Her Town in Stories and Photographs. Illus. by Susan Gal. 2022. 40p. Scholastic, $18.99 (9781338225891). Gr. 3-5.
A picture book illustrating how Eliach’s childhood in Eishyshok inspired her to curate the Tower of Life memorial in the US Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Thundercloud, Ria. Finding My Dance. Illus by Kalila J. Fuller. 2022. 40p. Penguin/Penguin Workshop, $18.99 (9780593093894). Gr. 1-5.
Ria embraces her Indigenous identity as a dancer and mother, starting with her first powwow through to her professional dance career.

Tlaib, Rashida and Adam Tlaib with Miranda Paul. Mama in Congress: Rashida Tlaib’s Journey to Washington. Illus. by Olivia Aserr. 2022. 40p. HarperCollins/Clarion, $18.99 (9780358683438). PreS-Gr. 3.
An inspiring picture-book biography of US congressperson Tlaib.

Yuksel, M.O. One Wish: Fatima al-Fihri and the World’s Oldest University. Illus. by Mariam Quraishi. 2022. 40p. HarperCollins, $18.99 (9780063032910). PreS.-Gr. 3.
A picture-book biography about al-Fihri and her journey to founding what is now the world’s oldest continually operating university.

Middle Grade-Fiction

Bajaj, Varsha. Thirst. 2022. 176p. Penguin/Nancy Paulsen. $17.99 (9780593354391). Gr. 4-8.
In Mumbai, Minni longs for a solution to the water crisis that has impacted her family and is threatening her education.

Balcárcel, Rebecca. Shine on, Luz Véliz!. 2022. 332p. Chronicle, $17.99 (9781797209678). Gr. 3-7.
Luz grapples with her identity in the face of a new family member and an emerging interest in coding.

Booth, Coe. Caprice. 2022. 256p. Scholastic, $17.99 (9780545933346). Gr. 4-8.
Twelve-year-old Caprice struggles with abig decision aboutattending boarding school away from friends and family and dark memories that resurface.

Brown, Waka T. Dream, Annie, Dream. 2022. 352p. HarperCollins/Quill Tree, $16.99 (9780063017160). Gr. 3-7.
Twelve-year-old Japanese American Aoi, or Annie, navigates 1980s Topeka, where her big dreams—from stage to basketball court, writing to romance—bump up against sexism, friendship troubles, and racial microaggressions.

Christmas, Johnnie. Swim Team. 2022. 256p. HarperCollins/HarperAlley, $20.99 (9780063056763). Gr. 4-6.
Bree faces her biggest fear: swimming. With the help of her teammates and coach she learns important lessons about friendship and teamwork in the context of Black history.

Delliquanti, Blue. Across a Field of Starlight. 2022. 352p. Random/Random House Graphic, $23.99 (9780593124147). Gr. 7-9.
Lu and Fassen navigate friendship despite social and emotional differences between growing up in an egalitarian society versus a wage-labor–based economy entrenched in war.

Engle, Margarita. Rima’s Rebellion: Courage in a Time of Tyranny. 2022. 208p. Simon & Schuster/Atheneum, $18.99 (9781534486935). Gr. 7-12.
Beginning in 1923, this novel in verse captures a Cuban girl’s quest for suffrage, autonomy, and love, not just for herself, but for all women and girls in her country.

Gino, Alex. Alice Austen Lived Here. 2022. 176p. Scholastic, $17.99 (9781338733891). Gr. 4-7. 
A school history assignment leads 12-year-old nonbinary Sam to discover queer history in their Staten Island community.

Goerz, Gillian. Shirley and Jamila’s Big Fall. 2021. 240p. Penguin/Dial, $20.99 (9780525552888). Gr. 3-6.
Kid detective Shirley and best friend Jamila navigate new cases and new friends during the school year.

Hussain, Salma. The Secret Diary of Mona Hasan. 2022. 296p. Tundra, $17.99 (9780735271494). Gr. 5-9.
Naively earnest Pakistani Muslim Mona journals about life in Dubai and her family’s move to Nova Scotia; muses about family, boys, feminism, racism, and culture; and writes hilariously exuberant poetry.

McNicoll, Elle. A Kind of Spark. 2022. 192p. Random/Crown, $16.99 (9780593374252). Gr. 3-7.
Eleven-year-old Addie petitions for a memorial in her hometown to honor the witches burned for being different as she herself deals with bullying for being autistic.

Ormsbee, Kathryn. Candidly Cline. 2021. 320p. HarperCollins, $16.99 (9780063059993). Gr. 4-8.
A 13-year-old working-class Kentucky girl draws strength from the classic women country singers her grandmother introduces her to as she navigates changing friendships, family relationships, sexuality, and achieving her dreams.

Ortega, Claribel A. Frizzy. Illus by. Rose Bousamra. 2022. 224p. Macmillan/First Second, $21.99 (9781250259639). Gr. 3-7.
Marlene embarks on a journey of self-love as she learns to take care of her natural curls in this middle-grade graphic novel.

Pérez, Celia. Tumble. 2022. 368p. Penguin/Kokila, $17.99 (9780593325179) Gr. 4-7.
When her stepfather proposes adoption, Adela Ramirez decides to find her biological father and uncovers her legacy as a luchador in a history of powerful women wrestlers.

*Salazar, Aida. A Seed in the Sun. 2022. 255p. Penguin/Dial, $17.99 (9780593406601). Gr. 3-7. 
In this verse novel set during the 1965 farm workers’ labor protests, 12-year-old Lula defies the expectations of her gender and age to fight alongside her family and community.

Wolo, Mamle. The Kaya Girl. 2022. 336p. Hachette/Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, $16.99 (9780316703932). Gr. 4-9.
Two 14-year-old girls in Ghana from completely different walks of life form a close friendship that sustains them as they grow and work toward achieving their dreams.

Middle Grade-Nonfiction

Bolden, Tonya. Speak Up, Speak Out! The Extraordinary Life of “Fighting Shirley Chisholm.” 2022. 144p. National Geographic Kids, $17.99 (9781426372360). Gr. 5-8.
Chisholm battles racism and sexism to become the first Black woman in Congress as well as the first Black woman to run for US president.

Silverberg, Cory. You Know, Sex: Bodies, Gender, Puberty, and Other Things. Illus. by Fiona Smyth. 2022. 432p. Seven Stories/Triangle Square, $29.95 (9781644210802). Gr. 5-9.Puberty, consent, sex, relationships, and more are covered in this brightly illustrated graphic novel grounded in social justice and inclusion.

Zoboi, Ibi. Star Child: A Biographical Constellation of Octavia Estelle Butler. 2022. 130p. Penguin/Dutton, $16.99 (9780399187384). Gr. 5-12.A snapshot biography of groundbreaking science fiction writer Butler, written in verse and prose.

Young Adult-Fiction

Acevedo, Elizabeth. Inheritance: A Visual Poem. Illus. by Andrea Pippins. 2022. 48p. HarperCollins/Quill Tree, $16.99 (9780062931948). Gr. 6-up.
Acevedo’s poem “Hair” is adapted as a visual poem with art by Pippins, acknowledging prejudices and celebrating Black hair. 

Ahmed, Samira. Hollow Fires. 2022. 432p. Hachette/Little, Brown and Company, $18.99 (9780316282642) Gr. 8-12.
Safiya uses her skills as an aspiring journalist to uncover the full story behind the murder of a Muslim boy in her town. 

Allen, Rachael. Harley Quinn: Reckoning. 2022. 464p. Random/Random House Books for Young Readers, $18.99 (9780593429860). Gr. 9-12.
Harley Quinn’s origin story is set at Gotham University, where she interns in a psych lab, joins a girl gang, and exacts revenge for the misogyny running rampant in STEM.

Anderson, Lily. Scout’s Honor. 2022. 416p. Macmillan/Henry Holt, $18.99 (9781250246738). Gr. 9-12.
Three years after quitting the Ladybird Scouts, Prudence gets roped back in to train a new group of scouts and banish the monsters that killed her best friend.

Bledsoe, Lucy Jane. No Stopping Us Now. 2022. 272p. Three Rooms, paper, $15.00 (9781953103208). Gr. 9-12.
In 1974 Portland, Louisa becomes an activist when she demands her high school district comply with the newly passed Title IX law and set up a girls’ basketball league.

Bonnin, Elisa A. Dauntless. 2022. 384p. Macmillan/Swoon Reads $18.99 (9781250795618). Gr. 9-12.
After joining an army that slays beasts, Seri begins to question everything she’s been told and must confront difficult questions about herself, her people, and the world around her.

Brophy, Aislinn. How to Succeed in Witchcraft. 2022. 416p. Penguin/Putnam, $18.99 (9780593354520). Gr. 9-12.
In a magical world built seamlessly into contemporary times, Shay Johnson struggles with the pressure to win a prestigious scholarship at her magnet school and change her family’s life.

*Browne, Mahogany L. Vinyl Moon. 2022. 176p. Random/Crown, $18.99 (9780593176436). Gr. 9-12.
Angel moves from California to Brooklyn at the start of junior year and discovers home and belonging are more than just places.

Burton, Jessie. Medusa: The Girl Behind the Myth. Illus. by Olivia Lomenech Gill. 2021. 224p. Bloomsbury/Bloomsbury YA, $19.99 (9781547607594). Gr. 9-12.
A retelling of the classic Greek myth in which Medusa finds her own voice.

Chee, Traci. A Thousand Steps Into Night. 2022. 384p. HarperCollins/Clarion, $18.99 (9780358469988). Gr. 8-12.
After being turned into a demon, Miuko must figure out how to change back to her human form and save her friend while grappling with a new version of herself.

Chesil. The Color of the Sky Is the Shape of the Heart. Trans. by Takami Nieda. 2022. 168p. Soho/Soho Teen, $18.99 (9781641292290). Gr. 9-up.
Growing up as a Zainichi Korean in Japan, Ginny grapples with the complications of being an ethnic minority while also being a girl. 

Cuevas, Mayra & Marie Marquardt. Does My Body Offend You? 2022. 432p. Random/Knopf, $18.99 (9780593425855). Gr. 9-12.
Two teen girls from different backgrounds form a new friendship and ignite a feminist revolution when they team up to tackle the sexist dress code at their Florida high school. 

Dean, Sunyi. The Book Eaters. 2022. 304p. Tor, $26.99 (9781250810182). Gr. 10-up.
Devon, a member of a reclusive family who eats books to absorb their knowledge, escapes and fights back against the systems of power she grew up in.

*Deo, Jesmeen Kaur. TJ Powar Has Something to Prove. 2022. 368p. Penguin/Viking, $17.99 (9780593403396). Gr. 9-12.
When TJ and her cousin become the targets of sexist memes, she fights back by growing her body hair.

Doll, Jen. That’s Debatable. 2022. 352p. Macmillan/Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $18.99 (9780374306045). Gr. 9-12.
Opposites fall in love: Driven, focused, financially struggling debate champion Millie faces entrenched sexism, while wealthy, principled Tag can afford to flout the rules while learning to be an ally.

England, Remi K. The One True Me and You: A Novel. 2022. 272p. Macmillan/Wednesday, $18.99 (9781250814869). Gr. 9-12.
When a beauty pageant and a fandom convention are held at the same hotel, two queer teens experience a whirlwind romance while exploring their own identities.

Fahmy, Huda. Huda F Are You?. 2021. 192p. Penguin/Dial, $22.99 (9780593324318). Gr. 7-12.
Huda has to figure out who she is aside from the “hijabi girl” when her family moves to Dearborn, MI where everyone is the “hijabi girl.”

Farol Follmuth, Alexene. My Mechanical Romance. 2022. 272p. Holiday House, $18.99 (9780823450107). Gr. 9-12.
When Bel joins her new school’s robotics team, she has to contend with sexism, her unclear future, and the annoyingly cute team captain.

Ferguson, Jen. The Summer of Bitter and Sweet. 2022. 384p. HarperCollins/Heartdrum, $17.99 (9780063086166). Gr. 9-12.
Lou spends the summer working at her family’s ice cream business, dealing with harassment, and learning more about her sexuality.

Gillman, Melanie. Other Ever Afters: New Queer Fairy Tales. 2022. 240p. Random/Random House Graphic, $24.99 (9780593303191). Gr. 6-12.
A colorful graphic novel that reimagines classic fairy tales in feminist and community-oriented utopian settings.

*Goffney, Joya. Confessions of an Alleged Good Girl. 2022. 368p. HarperCollins/HarperTeen, $17.99 (9780063024847). Gr. 8-12.
Monique, the daughter of a Black Baptist preacher in Texas, grapples with faith, shame, and purity culture; her boyfriend’s demands for sex; and finding a cure for her vaginismus.

Goka, Ruby Yayra. Even When Your Voice Shakes. 2022. 240p. W.W. Norton/Norton Young Readers, $18.95 (9781324017110). Gr. 7-12.
Amerley becomes a domestic worker for a wealthy family to provide for her three sisters and mother, but she reaches a breaking point when her boss’s son rapes her.

Hall, Leanne. The Gaps. 2022. 368p. Text, paper, $11.95 (9781922330482). Gr. 9-12.
When a 16-year-old is abducted, students at her private girls’ school are deeply affected by fears for her safety and their own as they live with uncertainty, suspicion, and speculation.

Hammonds, Jas. We Deserve Monuments. 2022. 384p. Macmillan/Roaring Brook, $18.99 (9781250816559). Gr. 9-12.
Avery explores family secrets, new love, and her own identity when she visits her maternal grandmother in Bardell, Georgia.

Haydu, Corey Ann. Lawless Spaces. 2022. 496p. Simon & Schuster, $18.99 (9781534437067). Gr. 9-12.
Mimi tries to understand her relationship with her mother and her mother’s role as accuser in a sexual assault case while unraveling the pasts of female relatives through their journals.

Hirahara, Naomi. Clark and Division. 2021. 312p. Soho/Soho Crime, $27.95 (9781641292498). Gr. 10-up.
After re-settling in Chicago following her family’s time in a Japanese American internment camp, Aki Ito works to figure out the events surrounding her sister’s unexpected death.

Ho, Joanna. The Silence That Binds Us. 2022. 448p. HarperCollins/HarperTeen, $17.99 (9780063059344). Gr. 9-12.
Maybelline Chen mourns her brother’s death by suicide while also enduring racist attacks on her family following this tragedy.

Huerta, Lizz. The Lost Dreamer. 2022. 384p. Macmillan/Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $18.99 (9781250754851). Gr. 9-12.
Dreamer Indir and seer Saya have to decide what roles they will play as a cycle ends and chaos comes for them both.

Hur, June. The Red Palace. 2022. 336p. Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends, $18.99 (9781250800558). Gr. 9-12.
Nurse Hyeon must work quickly to clear the name of her teacher and discover who has been killing women in the palace.

Kandic Torres, Christine. The Girls in Queens. 2022. 304p. HarperCollins/HarperVia, $26.99 (9780063216778). Gr. 10-up.
The friendship between two young Latinas is challenged when a neighborhood athlete is accused of sexual assault.

Kulper, Kendall. Murder for the Modern Girl. 2022. 352p. Holiday House, $19.99 (9780823449729). Gr. 9-12.
Ruby uses her mind-reading skills to track down and dispose of monstrous men, discovering a government plot in the process.

Lainoff, Lillie. One for All. 2022. 400p. Macmillan/Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $18.99 (9780374314613). Gr. 7-12.
A re-imagining of The Three Musketeers, in which a chronically ill girl trains as a Musketeer, seeking justice for her father’s murder and uncovering more secrets along the way.

*Moore, Natalie Y. The Billboard. 2022. 100p. Haymarket, paper, $16.00 (9781642595734). Gr. 9-up.
Black women activists on the South Side of Chicago work to combat toxic public messaging about abortion during a local election.

Nunn, Malla. Sugar Town Queens. 2021. 320p. Penguin/Putnam, $17.99 (9780525515609). Gr. 7-12.
A mixed-race South African girl growing up in poverty in a township with her white mother discovers family secrets in a richly layered coming-of-age story about the strength of community.

Oh, Axie. The Girl Who Fell Beneath the Sea. 2022. 336p. Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends, $18.99 (9781250780867). Gr. 7-12.
Mina will have to make her own fate in order to save her village from deadly storms and end the Sea God’s curse.

Onoseta, Rimma. How You Grow Wings. 2022. 336p. Algonquin/Algonquin Young Readers, $18.99 (9781643751917). Gr. 9-up.
Two sisters in rural Nigeria navigate favoritism embedded in patriarchal norms and colonial beauty standards and the personal tolls of both open rebellion and obedient acquiescence.

Owen, Margaret. Little Thieves. 2021. 512p. Macmillan/Henry Holt, $18.99 (9781250191908). Gr. 9-up.
In this retelling of “The Goose Girl,” Vanja knows how dangerous it is to be loved by the wrong people; she is less certain how to find the right people.

Parks, Amy Noelle. Lia and Beckett’s Abracadabra. 2022. 304p. Abrams/Amulet, $17.99 (9781419753442). Gr. 7-12.
When her former magician’s assistant grandmother creates a stage-magic competition, Lia and her male competitors are drawn into a long-standing rivalry with roots in deeply embedded industry sexism and biases.

Reyes, Sonora. The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School. 2022. 400p. HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, $18.99 (9780063060234). Gr. 8-12.
Yamilet struggles to fit in at her new school as one of two Mexican American students, especially while pretending to be straight.

Romero, R.M. The Ghosts of Rose Hill. 2022. 384p. Holiday House/Peachtree Teen, $18.99 (9781682633380). Gr. 8-12.
After being sent to Prague by her parents who want her to focus on her studies, Ilana finds herself in a haunting fairytale with a ghost boy and a monster.

Rowser, Jamila & Robyn Smith. Wash Day Diaries. 2022. 192p. Chronicle, paper, $19.95  (9781797205458). Gr. 9-up.
Four best friends’ stories intertwine in comic segments that revolve around hair, romance, mental health, self-care, and friendship.

Safi, Aminah Mae. Travelers Along the Way: A Robin Hood Remix. 2022. 352p. Macmillan/Feiwel & Friends, $18.99 (9781250771278). Gr. 7-12.
In 1192, Rahma al-Hud builds a band of merry misfits and a reputation for helping those in need in Jerusalem during the Third Crusade.

Schneider, Robyn. The Other Merlin. 2021. 432p. Penguin/Viking, $18.99 (9780593351024). Gr. 9-12. In this remixed Arthurian legend, Emry Merlin disguises herself as her twin brother to become the next great wizard of Camelot.

*Sutanto, Jesse Q. Well, That Was Unexpected. 2022. 352p. Random/Delacorte, $18.99 (9780593433973). Gr. 7-12.
Two Chinese Indonesian teens—a biracial California girl and a Jakarta boy—reckon with catfishing, gender roles, toxic masculinity, meddling families, social media scrutiny—and unexpectedly falling in love.

Sylvester, Natalia. Breathe and Count Back From Ten. 2022. 352p. HarperCollins/Clarion, $17.99 (9780358536864). Gr. 8-12.
Seventeen-year-old Peruvian immigrant Verónica finds freedom in swimming; she lives with chronic pain from hip dysplasia, hiding her boyfriend from her overprotective parents and her surgery scars from the world.

Tian, XiXi. This Place Is Still Beautiful. 2022. 368p. HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, $18.99 (9780063086029). Gr. 9-up.
When an anti-Asian slur is painted on their garage door, two biracial Chinese American sisters must grapple with the aftermath, their identities, and their relationship.

Woodfolk, Ashley. Nothing Burns as Bright as You. 2022. 288p. HarperCollins/Versify, $18.99 (9780358655350). Gr. 9-12.
A novel in verse about an explosive and complicated teen romance between best friends.

Young Adult-Nonfiction

Beaton, Kate. Ducks: Two Years in the Oil Sands. 2022. 436p. Drawn & Quarterly, $39.95 (9781770462892). Gr. 10-up.
A graphic memoir of Beaton’s experiences as a young woman working in the Canadian oil sands to pay off her student loans.

Burke, Tarana. Unbound: My Story of Liberation and the Birth of the Me Too Movement. 2021. 272p. Flatiron, $28.99 (9781250621733). Gr. 9-up.
Burke, the founder of the Me Too movement, tells the story of her life and how it led to the founding of an intersectional feminist movement.

Charles, Shavone. Black Internet Effect. Illus. by Ashley Lukashevsky. 2022. 64p. Penguin/Penguin Workshop, paper, $8.99 (9780593387535). Gr. 6-up.
Part of the Pocket Change Collective series, this book gives space for Charles to share her experiences as the first Black woman to enter many spaces in tech.

Cronn-Mills, Kirstin. Gender Inequality in Sports: From Title IX to World Titles. 2022. 120p. Lerner/Twenty-First Century, $37.32 (9781728419473). Gr. 8-up.
Filled with case studies of notable women and nonbinary people, this book is packed with information on Title IX, its impact on women’s sports, and recommendations for the future.

Eismann, Sonja, Maya, & Ingo Schöningh (eds). Movements and Moments. Illus. by various. 2022. 264p. Drawn & Quarterly, $29.95 (‎9781770465619). Gr. 7-up.
A graphic novel anthology that chronicles Indigenous feminist rebellions and resistance from the Global South.

Elhillo, Safia. Girls That Never Die: Poems. 2022. 144p. Penguin/One World, paper, $17.00 (9780593229484). Gr. 10-up.
A collection of poetry on Muslim girlhood that includes family storytelling and news reports on the shame and violence that plague women while honoring how women and girls fight patriarchy.

Ewing, Rhea. Fine: A Comic about Gender. 2022. 336p. W.W. Norton/Liveright, paper, $21.00 (9781631496806). Gr. 9-up.
A graphic narrative of over fifty individuals’ experiences, varying in gender, age, and race, with the nature of gender and its intersections with sexuality, culture, and race.

*Jallow, Toufah with Kim Pittaway. Toufah: The Woman Who Inspired an African #MeToo Movement. 2021. 320p. Steerforth/Truth to Power, $16.95 (9781586423001). Gr. 10-up.
The true story of Jallow’s journey from fleeing the Gambia to becoming a fierce advocate for victims of sexual violence.

Michaud-Skog, Summer. Fat Girls Hiking: An Inclusive Guide to Getting Outdoors at Any Size or Ability. 2022. 250p. Timber, paper, $19.95 (9781643260396). Gr. 6-up.
This guide includes an overview of fat activism, body neutrality, hiking logistics, and personal testimony about the power of the outdoors from a diverse range of fat folks.

Shire, Warsan. Bless the Daughter Raised by a Voice in Her Head: Poems. 2022. 96p. Random, paper, $17.00 (9780593134351). Gr. 9-up.
Shire’s poems deftly follow girlhood to womanhood through the lived experiences of Black women and refugees.

Sánchez, Erika L. Crying in the Bathroom: A Memoir. 2022. 256p. Penguin/Viking, $27.00 (9780593296936). Gr. 10-up.
Sánchez recounts the struggles and triumphs of growing up as a daughter of immigrants near Chicago.

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