Thursday, February 08, 2007

Strong Girls in Children's Books

Little Willow ponders the question of who the great "strong female protagonists" of children's books are. Alice in Wonderland and the His Dark Materials series provide a few examples, but here's my favorite from Little Willow's list:
The Anne Shirley series by L.M. Montgomery - She's an orphan. She's spunky and sassy. She's a dreamer and a daredevil. She's Anne of Green Gables. Read the eight books in order and see Anne grow up. From her days as a student in a one-room schoolhouse to going to college to becoming a teacher, her school smarts are just as important as her people smarts.

I'd add these....

Trixie Belden - So much cooler than Nancy Drew. She's a career-woman detective first and above all else. She has a temper, a strong will, an independent spirit, and a nose for mystery and trouble.

Meg Wallace - Especially in book 2 (A Wind in the Door), I think Meg comes into her own powers and finds her strength.

Turtle Wexler (The Westing Game) - Anyone who can inflict that many shin bruises in one book -- while solving a mystery and striking out on her own path in life -- is okay by me.

And of course, don't forget about this great Cool Girls list from Jen Robinson.

Who would you add?


dshep said...

How about Dicey Tillerman in Cynthia Voigt's Dicey's Song? She lead her younger siblings on a long journey to a possible new home when they were abandoned by their mother.

Little Willow said...

Dshep: Dicey is a GREAT addition. I think that she would be friends with Zoe from A ROOM ON LORELEI STREET by Mary E. Pearson, don't you?

Journey Woman: Thanks! I posted that booklist last May at SheWalks' request, then re-posted it yesterday when more folks asked for a similar booklist. I must add Turtle right this minute. I adore her.

Erin said...

I would add Hermione Granger, Aravis (Horse and His Boy) and Violet Baudelaire - my three favorites!

Stidmama said...

Jo March, for sure; my favorite, "Muggles" from The Gammage Cup; probably Sara Crewe and Mary Lennox (A Little Princess and A Secret Garden protagonists) for managing to become or remain kind and strong despite tremendous upheaval.