Latest post

New Balance Sneakers for the entire family!

* This post is sponsored by Superbalist. It's the beginning of a new school year and the start of all kinds of extra-murals and sports for our crew... That means shoe shopping. More specifically, sneaker shopping! Growing feet need new trainers for netball, hockey,...

New Balance Sneakers for the entire family!

* This post is sponsored by Superbalist. It's the beginning of a new school year and the start of all kinds of extra-murals and sports for our crew... That means shoe shopping. More specifically, sneaker shopping! Growing feet need new trainers for netball, hockey,...

read more

Book Club: 10 inspiring books every girl needs to read

by | Feb 24, 2021 | Just Kids, Reading | 3 comments

It’s 2021 but somehow women all over the world are still being stereotyped, still being told what they can and should do. What they should wear and what’s considered appropriate and ladylike. Individuality is rarely celebrated. And with social media rising, the pressure to conform to what’s popular is at an all-time high. It’s hard to remember your worth and see your own beauty when you’re constantly being rated by likes, followers and trends. Now, more than ever, girls need fierce, female role models that they can identify with and look up to! What better place to start than with storytime and this list of books every girl needs to read…

10 inspiring books every girl needs to read

Starting with the book that inspired this post…

1. BOLD BIBLE GIRLS – Lauren Jacobs

A powerful new children’s book written by pastor, author and radio host, Lauren Jacobs. Each chapter tells the story of a courageous, strong Christian woman – most of whom we’ve never even heard of before. Each chapter is followed by an insightful devotional section helping us guide our girls into a better understanding of what it looks like to be a fierce female.

bold bible girls

  • Where to buy: Only available online via the Lauren Jacobs website. CLICK HERE to order. (I would recommend ordering a few with friends and saving on courier costs.)

2. The Little People, BIG DREAMS Collection – Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara

Little People, Big Dreams is a series that celebrates the important life stories of outstanding people of the world. All of them went on to achieve incredible things, yet each of them began life as a little child, with a big dream. What started as a collection of female role models, now also includes amazing men. These books make the lives of these role models accessible to children, providing a powerful message that inspires the next generation to change the world. We hope to own every single book one day!

* The “Little People, BIG DREAMS” series is available in hardcover for older girls (5years+) and also a “My First” toddler cardboard edition (perfect for little one 3years+).

little people big dreams 1

3. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls: 100 Tales of Extraordinary Women – Elena Favilli & Francesca Cavallo

An empowering read every girl needs to own! The true-life stories of 100 heroic women (from Queen Elizabeth 1 to Serena Williams) have all been reinvented into modern-day fairy tales. One page per woman, along with the most incredible illustrations – each created by 60 females from all over the world. This book tells the story of countless women who changed the world by taking action. Whether it’s through living out their passion, taking a stand against injustice or being a pioneer in a male-driven world. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls encourages little girls to chase their dreams, stand up for what they know is true and dream about their futures.

good night stories for rebel girls

4. A to Z of Amazing South African Women – Ambre Nicolson & Jaxon Hsu

Almost like a local edition of “Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls.” This is no ordinary A to Z. With each letter of the alphabet this book honours the contribution of women to South Africa’s past, present and future. Using short, easy-to-read biographies and illustrations that are as bright and bold as the women they depict, this book shares the life stories of 26 South African rebels, artists, troublemakers, athletes, dancing queens and freedom fighters. Good for girls ages 5years+.

a to z of amazing south african women

Not all inspiring read need to be based on true life. Some of the most inspiring ladies are completely fictional…

5. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carrol

I remember reading Alice in Wonderland for the 1st time and over the years I have actually built up quite a collection of different versions and publications. The value this book has added to my life can’t be put into words. Alice represents every girl as we grow up and start to understand and make our own way through adolescence and adulthood. Alice taught me to believe in myself and my own capabilities, to be fearless and trust in my gut instinct because sometimes, nothing else will make sense. She also reminds me to look for the odd, the interesting and the hidden beauty we often overlook.

Some life lessons I still cling to include:

“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

“‘Who in the world am I?’ Ah, that’s the great puzzle!”

“We’re all mad here.”

Current favourite edition: Alice in Wonderland – Irena Trevisan & Nadia Fabris

This was part of Eliana’s birthday gift this year (we prefer giving a book instead of a card). A very condensed version of this much-loved classic. Alice follows the white rabbit into a fantastic world populated by bizarre and outlandish characters. All our favourites are there… The Cheshire Cat, the blue caterpillar, the March Hare, Mad Hatter, the Red Queen and her playing cards. The only difference, this time the illustrations have been taken up a notch with the use of delicately die-cut pages. Each page is even more beautiful than the previous and keeps all our girls (including mama) fixated! This book is such a special find and a perfect addition to every little girl’s home library. Best for ages 3years+

sassi alice in wonderland

  • Where to buy: I have seen this book at boutique book stores but the easiest way to buy would be online via Timeless Toys. They stock a huge variety of other beautiful books and toys as well as the Sassi Collection.

6. Sulwe – Lupita Nyongo

Sulwe is darker than everyone in her family and everyone at school. She wants to be bright and beautiful like her mom and sister but then a shooting star takes her on the most magical journey… Soon Sulwe learns to see her own beauty. The stunning Lupita Nyong’o wrote this book and shares the struggles she faced growing up in the Authors note. Reading this and the story of Sulwe opened our eyes to a world we did not know but now understand a little bit better. My favourite quote from the book is when the star explains to Sulwe

“we need them both, on their sunniest day and their darkest night, and every shade in between. Together they make the world we know, light and dark, strong and beautiful.”

All girls need to read this book, no matter their race. Sulwe teaches us to see ourselves and others (no matter how different from ourselves) as beautiful, strong and valued.

Sulwe Lupita Nyongo

7. Hetta Elizabetta en die wêreld op haar Skouers – Milan Murray

Like most women, Hetta Elizabetta has a natural tendency to “carry the worries of the world on her shoulders”. The weight of the world becomes too much for Hetta to bear… This wonderful story, with its fantastical illustrations, teach children to let go of what’s not important or within their control while also reminding us, we aren’t in this world alone. We are allowed to lean on one another, support each other and carry our burdens together.

hetta elizabetta en die wêreld op haar skouers milan murray

8. Moenie met ‘n Prinses mors nie! – Rachel Valentine (Vertaal deur Kobus Geldenhuys)

In a kingdom far away an ogre is making a big mess and everyone (especially the knights) are scared! Meet the three determined, brave princesses – “Prinses Blaar, Prinses Bloeisel en Prinses Blom”. These 3 fearless sisters show the entire kingdom, including their dad how to “slay” an orgre with kindness, compassion and a few dazzling dance moves! A book that shows girls can do anything a boy can do, maybe even better! An ideal read for little ones 0-6years old.

moenie met 'n prinses mors nie rachel valentine vertaal deur kobus geldenhuys

9. Sprokies met Lesse Reeks: Sneeuwitjie, die Sokkerster – Sue Nicholson (Vertaal deur Kobus Geldenhuys)

* Also available in English: Snow White Star Striker. 

Snow White is one of the best players on the village football team. But the trouble is, she wants to score all the goals herself. How can she become a team player instead? Such an important life skill for all but especially little girls. Society still tends to pit women against one another instead of encouraging support and encouragement of one another. In this adaptation of Snow White, little ones are taught about the value of teamwork. The book also includes discussion points and an activity to do with your little one – just to help them remember what it’s all about. An ideal read for little ones 0-6years old.

Sprokies met lesse reeks sneeuwitjie die sokkerster sue nicholson vertaal deur kobus geldenhuys

10. Ouma Hester Reeks – Janie Oosthuysen

Granny Hester isn’t like most grandmothers. She is fearless, adventurous and never backs away from any challenge. The “Ouma Hester” series is a fun, Afrikaans reader for little ones 9-12 years. Written in a very casual manner. These stories keep you at the edge of your seat while laughing at everything Grandma Hester gets up to.

ouma hester lees reeks

Do you have any books to add? We want to keep growing our collection of real-life and fictional “she-heroes” keeping us inspired. Add your favourite books every girl needs to read in a comment below. It will be much appreciated.

For more of our top reads, CLICK HERE and visit our READING SECTION.

10 inspiring books every girl needs to read

approved banner eots rect a


  1. Caley

    So many beautiful books – thank you for sharing, my friend x

  2. Carina Jansen

    Thank you Mari-Louise. This is exactly what Alexia and I was looking for this weekend. Love your informative blogs!

    • Mari-Louise

      Thank you so much Carina, may you girls enjoy the new reading.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join the sisterhood

of motherhood

Just a Mamma

Just a mamma

is a space for Mammas by a Mamma. Intended to inspire, motivate and be helpful. No judgement or expert advice – just gorgeous photo shoots, fun celebrations, great finds for mamma and baby, inspirational moms I have come across, places to go and vacations to have, as well as my own journey of motherhood and family life.

Best Parenting Blog Winner
Best Parenting Blog Winner
SA Parenting Blog Awards BEST TRAVEL BLOG
south african mom blogs finalist

Seen on CapeTownInsider

Posts you may also like

Christmas gift ideas for tweens

Christmas gift ideas for tweens

I love a good gift guide! Especially for those "less than easy" to buy for loved ones. So, this year, I roped in our 10year old and together we came up with a few gift ideas for tweens... Categorised according to the “4 gift rule“, also known as the “Wear, Read,...

Party inspiration | 40th Birthday party, for him!

Party inspiration | 40th Birthday party, for him!

We love a good celebration and putting together a pretty party has always been my thing. So when Mr. Perfect turned the big FORTY this year, I knew we'd be doing something special... BUT planning a 40th birthday party for him would be very different from anything else...

FREE Resurrection eggs printable + “Local” Easter Finds

FREE Resurrection eggs printable + “Local” Easter Finds

As our girls grow older we consciously move towards incorporating more Biblical meaning and symbols into our Easter celebrations. All in an effort to keep Jesus the focus. Resurrection Eggs are anything new. A quick google search renders millions of results. I however...

Easy label making with the STAMP ‘n STICK + Giveaway

Easy label making with the STAMP ‘n STICK + Giveaway

Easy label making is a MUST in our home. With 3 kids, all in school, I often forget to order everyone's labels in time and we always seem to be running low on clothing labels... Plus, labels are EXPENSIVE! Until I've found a DIY "one-for-all" stamp kit that saves me...