Top Ten Tuesday | Girls in Historical Fiction

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, where book bloggers are invited to share their top ten lists centered on a certain theme.

March is Women’s History Month, and today (March 8) is International Women’s Day! I wanted to do a TTT post that commemorates this celebration, so today I’m sharing 10 YA historical novels about girls & women. I love that these books showcase girls throughout history pushing back against expectations and taking an active role in their own lives. This list highlights 5 books that I’ve read & loved, and 5 that are still on my TBR.

My Top ten
1. Last Night at the Telegraph Club

1. Last Night at the Telegraph Club by Malinda Lo: Hands down one of my favorite YA historical fiction books! It follows a Chinese-American girl in 1950s SF China Town discovering her queerness.

2. Blood Water Paint

2. Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough: Another favorite, this historical novel in verse set in 1600s Rome follows famed painter and sexual assault survivor Artemisia Gentileschi.

3. The Downstairs Girl

3. The Downstairs Girl by Stacey Lee: Set in 1890s Atlanta, this book follows Chinese-American Jo, who runs a secret advice column in the local newspaper. This book officially turned me into a Stacey Lee fan!

4. The Weight of Our Sky

4. The Weight of Our Sky by Hanna Alkaf: This novel touches on a historical event I wasn’t previously very familiar with–the 1969 race riots between the Chinese and Malay–and was soooo good! I loved the discussion of mental health & OCD rep.

5. In the Neighborhood of True

5. In the Neighborhood of True by Susan Kaplan Carlton: As a Jewish reader, I was so excited about this book because we finally got a historical novel about Jewish folks that isn’t centered around the Holocaust! This takes place in the South in 1958 and follows Ruth, a girl who’s just moved from NY and decides to hide her Judaism.

6. Angel of Greenwood

6. Angel of Greenwood by Randi Pink: This is one on my TBR! It follows a teen Black girl during the Tulsa race massacre.

7. Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know

7. Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know by Samira Ahmed: I’ve loved Samira’s other books but haven’t had a chance to read this one! I love books that have a historical timeline and a contemporary one, so this one’s at the top of my TBR.

8. Butterfly Yellow

8. Butterfly Yellow by Thanhhà Lai: This one follows a teen girl who is a Vietnamese refugee longing to reunite with her brother. I’ve heard amazing things about Lai’s writing and am hoping to read this one soon!

9. So Many Beginnings

9. So Many Beginnings by Bethany C. Morrow: This YA remix of Little Women sounds amazing! I won a copy a few months ago but haven’t had a chance to start it yet.

10. Saving Savannah

10. Saving Savannah by Tonya Bolden: This coming of age story about a Black girl in the early 1900s had been on my TBR since it released in 2020! I’m a sucker for a good coming of age story and this one sounds amazing.


Which of these have you read or do you have on your TBR?


Happy reading! (1)

22 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday | Girls in Historical Fiction

  1. Nice to see Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know with a better cover! I love it’s UK cover but was never a fan of the US cover, it looked like a generic contemporary. This cover is so much nicer.

    Liked by 1 person

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