Darling Daughters



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Darling Daughters



Here is a selection of our family favourites. Age recommendations are a guide only. If you’re not sure what will suit your daughter, read or watch the title first yourself – you know your daughter best.


If you want more suggestions, There is a great website full of recommendations for darlings of all ages www.amightygirl.com



Little darlings (3–7 years)


All featuring strong, resourceful and independent minded female characters.




Frozen (Walt Disney Animation Studio, 2013)

Brave (Pixar Animation Studios, 2012)

Mulan (Walt Disney Feature Animation, 1998)

Mary Poppins (Walt Disney, 1964)

The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965)




Peace at Last by Joy Murphy Walker Books, 1980; Macmillan Children’s Books, 1999)


The Owl Babies by Martin Waddell and Patrick Benson (Walker Books, 1975)


Milly-Molly-Mandy by Joyce Lankester Brisley (Puffin, re-issued 1973)

A series of books about a fun, inquisitive and generous girl from a happy family.


My Naughty Little Sister by Dorothy Edwards and Shirley Hughes (First published 1952. Egmont, re-issue 2010)

A much-loved series of books. Follow the reading of a story with an empathic chat about annoying siblings!


The Deep by Tim Winton (Penguin Books, 1999) 

A great tale about overcoming fears, in this case swimming in the sea.


Who Made Me? by Malcolm Doney and Meryl Doney

A wonderful introduction to the facts of life!


Hair in Funny Places by Babette Cole (Red Fox, 2001) 

A beautiful tale of a girl and her teddy and what happens when Mr and Mrs Hormone wake up and cause havoc in the girl’s body.


Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman (Francis Lincoln, 2007)

A tale including a grandmother’s wisdom and a girl can be whoever she wants to be.



Older darlings (8–12 years)


Matilda by Roald Dahl (Puffin, re-issue 2013)

Book-loving Matilda is willing to be different and challenge her awful family!


Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery (Wordsworth Classics, first published 1908)

A good one for anyone teased for having red hair. Anne is a strong and lively girl who survives many mishaps and thrives in the academic world.


His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman (Scholastic, 1995–2000)

Lyra is headstrong, feisty and a questioner in this epic trilogy!


The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins  

Book trilogy and film series where the character Katniss Everdeen displays loyalty, toughness and intelligence.


The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank

The diary of a resilient, brave and resourceful girl hiding from the Nazis.


Whale Rider by Witi Ihimaera

The story is about a 12-year-old Maori girl who is a nature lover and follows her instincts and knows her own mind.


Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling (Bloomsbury Publishing, 1997–2007)

Hermione Granger, the main female character, is clever and a good friend.


Jacqueline Wilson

A prolific writer of children’s stories that tackle tough issues, such as adoption, divorce and mental health.



Young ladies (from 13 years)


The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey (Touchstone Books, 1998)

A very useful self-help guide for teens on developing life skills.


Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit (1985) and Why Be Happy When You Could be Normal? (2012) by Jeanette Winterson  

An excellent writer whose love of books and writing helped her overcome a sad and destructive childhood.


The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Penguin, 2013)

The story provides a good model for buildings relationships and dealing with adversity.


Divergent by Veronica Roth (HarperCollins Children’s Books, 2011)

A popular book and more recently a film where the heroine Tris Prior faces tough decisions on life, death and love.


To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee (First published 1960)

A much-loved coming of age novel that is centred on a 1930s rape case involving a white woman and a black man. The unfolding story is seen through the eyes of the defending lawyer’s young children.


Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë (First published 1847)

A moving classic in which Jane confronts her miserable childhood, stands up for strong feminist principles and deal with the complications of being in love with her employer.


Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë (First published 1847)

A complicated tale of love and revenge centred on the characters of free-spirited Catherine Earnshaw and tortured romantic hero Heathcliff.


Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (First published 1813)

 Elizabeth Bennet deals with love, morality and the role of a woman in nineteenth-century England.


Noughts and Crosses Trilogy by Malorie Blackman (Corgi, 2006)

Award-winning dramatic tales involving racial issues, adventure and romance.



Books for parents of daughters


Darling Daughters by Judy Reith (Vie 2015)

Raising Girls by Steve Biddulph (Harper Thorsons, 2013)

21st Century Girls Sue Palmer (Orion Books, 2013)

What Should We Tell Our Daughters? By Melissa Benn (Hodder & Stoughton, 2013)

Decoding Your 21st Century Daughter by Helen Wright, (emBooks, 2013)

Raising Confident Girls by Ian Grant and Mary Grant, (Vermilion, 2009)

Raising Girls Gisela Preuschoff (Harper Thorsons, 2005)

How Jane Won by Dr Sylvia Rimm (Crown New York, 2001)

The Wonder of Girls by Michael Gurian (Atria Books, Simon & Schuster, 2003)

You Don’t Really Know Me by Dr Terri Apter (W. W. Norton & Co, 2005)

How To Be A Woman Caitlin Moran (Ebury Press, 2012)

Your Daughter by the Girls’ School Association, (The Friday Project, 2011)

Secondary School – A Parent’s Guide by Glynis Kozma (Need2Know, 2013)

The Female Brain by Louann Brizendine MD (Bantam Books, 2008)

Confident Teens Gael by Lindenfeld (Thorsons, 2011)

The Curse of the Good Girl by Rachel Simmons (Penguin Books, 2009)

The Parent’s Toolkit by Naomi Richards (Vermilion, 2012)


I have included the following book as many readers will have sons and this is an excellent read.

Ten Conversations You Must Have With Your Son by Dr Tim Hawkes (Hachette, 2014)



Books for dads


Commando Dad by Neil Sinclair (Summersdale, 2010)


Fantastic First Time Father by Tim Mungeam (Quercus, 2013)

Top 50 tips for first time dads.


Fatherhood: The Truth by Marcus Berkmann (Vermilion, 2005)

This is a laugh out loud guide to becoming a dad.


Be A Great Dad by Andrew Watson (Hodder Education, 2010)

Teach yourself to be the world’s best dad.



Books for mums


Be Great A Mum by Judy Reith (Hodder Education, 2008)

Time Management for Manic Mums; Get Control of Your Life In 7 Weeks by Allison Mitchell (Hay House, 2012)

The Mum’s Guide to Returning to Work by Bekki Clark (Lulu.com, 2011)



Books for separating parents


The Guide for Separated Parents by Karen Woodall, Nick Woodall, (Piatkus 2009)

Family Breakdown by Penelope Leach (Unbound, 2014)