10 Best Books for Young Women

What happens when a young woman reads (good books)? Something wonderful! She has a way to relax, be entertained, and gain knowledge – all at the same time. The best books for young women do more, however, since they build confidence, foster curiosity, engender a sense of empathy, develop critical thinking, and teach perspective.

Each book on our list definitely has all those bases covered. They are taken from a variety of genres and written in a range of engaging styles. Still, each book offers each young female reader the chance to explore different facets of her identity.

Things to Consider When Buying Books for Young Women

Here are a few clues for finding that perfect book-reader match.

  • Her Reading Habits. A young woman who reads widely will be easy to please with nearly any choice of book. It’s a little trickier, though, to select a book if she is a picky reader. A good book, however, that falls outside of her usual fare, maybe just a thing to help her broaden her literary horizon!
  • The Book’s Relevance. Selecting a book that directly speaks to the young woman’s life experiences or the issues she struggles with is often a wise decision. However, that said, there is nothing wrong with a little escapism every once in a while, and books are a great way to do that.
  • The Book’s Style. Whether fiction or non-fiction, different books can carry the same message in unique ways. Some readers prefer when the topic is dealt with factually and straightforwardly. On the other hand, some readers find it more enjoyable and relatable when the theme is woven into a good book’s fabric.

Top 10 Books for Young Women Chart

Picture Name Genre Price Rating (1-5)
1. Girl in Pieces Contemporary – realistic fiction $$$
  • 4.7/5
2. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks Historical biography and science $$$
  • 4.6/5
3. Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women Historical biography and science $
  • 4.5/5
4. 50 Things Every Young Lady Should Know: What to Do, What to Say, and How to Behave Self-help $$$
  • 4.5/5
5. Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail Auto-biography (memoire) $$
  • 4.4/5
6. Americanah Contemporary $$
  • 4.4/5
7. Lies Young Women Believe: And the Truth that Sets Them Free Christian non-fiction $$
  • 4.4/5
8. Adulting: How to Become a Grown-up in 468 Easy(ish) Steps Self-help $$
  • 4.4/5
9. Bossypants Autobiography and humor $
  • 4.3/5
10. Room Contemporary $$
  • 4.3/5

Books for Young Women Shopping Tips

We tend to think of the best books as classics (a.k.a. old and written by someone famous). However, an interesting thing happens once you start shopping around for the best books for young women. You quickly come to realize that the word “classic” begins to take on new meaning.

Many Classics

  • Are Not Old. Think about it – every old classic was new once, and the “classics” didn’t earn that title simply by being old. Give new books by new authors a try, and you could get in on the front end of identifying a “masterpiece.”
  • Have Not Won Literary Awards. Sure, literary awards are nice (for the author), but bestsellers lists are where you should be seeking out your next good read. Whether you decide to go with a bestseller or not, still be sure to go through reviews (like this one!) to get a feel of the book’s appeal.
  • Were Not Written by Someone Famous. Ever heard the phrase “everyone has a good book in them”? Some of the very best books you will ever read are true “one-hit wonders,” so don’t discredit a book because you have never heard of the author.
  • Are Not Tomes. Don’t judge the book by the number of pages it has. Some authors have such a wonderful way with words and stating things simply that they really don’t need all the extra words!

Top 3 Best Books for Young Women Reviews

1. Girl in Pieces

Girl in Pieces

Girl in Pieces is Kathleen Glasgow’s debut novel and it has been met with glowing editorial and reader reviews. As fans of this new writer await her next work, many admit that the themes she deals with in this book still haunt them.

17-year old Charlotte “Charlie” Davis is the Girl in Pieces. She has taken to cutting herself as a way to deal with the many emotional burdens she carries. Charlotte narrates her journey through pain, self-acceptance, and healing for us as we are drawn deeper into her world.

Skillfully and simply told, Girl in Pieces is the kind of book that you finish reading with a newfound appreciation for your own triumphs in life.

2. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks delves into how cells taken without permission from a poor black tobacco farmer (Henrietta Lacks) became prized possessions among the scientific community. Yet, Henrietta was buried in an unmarked grave.

The many important medical discoveries and developments that directly result from Henrietta’s cells being studied are laid out in stark contrasted to the fact that her descendants lived in poverty and were never compensated.

Once you start reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks you begin to realize how non-fiction based on science, politics, and race can be made into a riveting page-turner. Author Rebecca Skloot takes on these themes as she gracefully and skillfully leads us through what could easily have been an ethical minefield to write about.

3. Girls Think of Everything

Girls Think of Everything

Author Catherine Thimmesh takes her readers on a historical journey to learn about the lives and scientific creations of a range of female inventors.

Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women can be read and appreciated by anyone (young, old, male, and female). It is young women, however, who will perhaps gain the most benefit from it. It is definitely one of the best books for young women to read.

The book not only chronicles the achievements made by quite a few women of science, it also shows us the many obstacles they had to overcome along the way. Included among the inventions are some of the most commonplace items you can think of (windshield wipers and chocolate chip cookies). In this book, the female inventors did what every woman (and man, too) wants to do – make life simpler, easier, and tastier!