This book list has been brewing in my mind for a long while now. If you are anything like me, when you have questions about a particular subject, you reach for a good book. for your convenience, this post contains affiliate links
A few years ago I was in one of those unknown situations. I knew my daughters were growing and I knew that I needed to figure out an easy way to help them understand what was happening to their minds and bodies – FYI puberty isn’t only a physical thing. So, I did some research (asked some moms) and pulled together a few great puberty books for girls.
I have always been a very reality based mom…when grandma was diagnosed with cancer, my preschooler learned all about colon cancer. When frank questions are asked, I answer them as honestly as possible – with age appropriate responses. My girls have always known words like vagina, penis, they know where babies come from, etc. Even with all this openness, I knew that a good book can be a wonderful way for someone to discover their own answers, read questions they might not have thought of and provide them with a private opportunity to learn.
So, I went and picked up a couple of books at the library, brought them home and told my then 9 year old that the books were available, if she wanted to check them out. Guess what? She totally checked them out. She was super curious. She read them and (the best part) she asked me questions. When my youngest daughter turned 9, I brought out the same stack of books and she gave them a read.
The Best Puberty Books for Girls
The Care & Keeping of You 1 : The Body Book for Younger Girls This book comes from the American Girl publishers. Yes, that American Girl. I had no idea that American Girl has a line of books! Let alone books about puberty. These are the best books. Book 1 is written for a pre-pubescent audience. Topics like personal hygiene, body hair, changing emotions and the beginning talk of periods are covered here. This is the perfect book for young curious minds.
The Care & Keeping of You Book 2 : The Body Book for Older Girls With Book 2 comes a deeper look into puberty. Building off the foundation of the first book, this book explores the physical and emotional side of puberty. We are talking menstruation, peer pressure, body hair, body odour, big emotions and more. I really liked the light attitude expressed in these books – they present puberty as an everyday part of life. Many young girls may fear puberty, this book is reassuring.
The What’s Happening My Body? by Linda Madaras This book is a long time classic and parent favourite on the topic of puberty. Recently updated to reflect changing issues facing girls, this books covers it all. I especially liked the focus on body image issues, eating disorders, homosexuality and the peer pressure to experiment with drugs and alcohol. If this is scaring you, read the book first and then pass it along to your 10-13 year old. These issues will resonate with your kid. Author Lynda Madaras presents the information in a factual manner, which can help in homes where parents aren’t comfortable talking with their daughters about puberty. All the answers, to all the answers, can be found inside.
Discovery Girls Guide to Growing Up…Everything You Need to Know About Your Changing Body The folks behind Discovery Girls magazine have put together this book on puberty. This book incorporates what the magazine does best – which is bringing the voices of girls into the information. All of the basics of puberty are covered, changing bodies, periods and body image. Young readers will like reading questions other girls are asking, which are highlighted throughout the book. The book helps girls know that they are not alone.
Ready Set Grow! by Lynda Madaras The beginning stages of puberty can be really confusing for girls. It might take months and years between a girl noticing small changes and her first period. There is a lot of stuff that needs to be explained in between. Thus, author Lynda Madaras has put together a book for younger girls. This book looks at topic like breast buds, the beginning of body hair, body odour and more. This book is great for curious, young girls.
Sex, Puberty and All That Stuff by Jacqui Bailey Do puberty and sex go hand-in-hand? As changes come to bodies, changes come to minds – so, it is important to not ignore the realities and consequences of sex. Author Jacqui Bailey covers information around puberty, sexual arousal, pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Presented in a graphic novel style, this book is a great resource to have on hand for the tough topics and navigating more challenging questions from tweens and teens.
Puberty Girl by Shushann Movsessian Positive, bright and cheerful, a few of the words I would use to describe this book. Tweens and teens love Instagram and this book is put together like a colourful feed on Instagram – totally appealing to most girls. Author Shushann Movsessian covers all the topics with a conversational approach, using images and language that young girls can easily relate to. I know that many girls will really enjoy this book and will undoubtably hold onto this book for many years.
The New Puberty: How to Navigate Early Development in Today’s Girls by Louise Greenspan and Julianna Deardorff This one is for the parents. It has been widely reported that girls are entering puberty at younger age than any other time in history. The authors of this book explore why this is happening. The book helps parents understand how to navigate early puberty and how to help their daughters navigate early puberty. A really helpful resource for parents with daughters.
Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret by Judy Blume So, a non-fiction book to end my list?! I don’t know many women who made it through tween/teen years without reading Judy Blume’s most famous and loved book. When any young girl I know turns 12 I gift them with Blume’s book. There is something amazing about listening in on another girl’s experience with changing emotions, changing body and finally getting her first period. I really feel like this book is essential reading for every pubescent young girl.
Well, I’m glad I got this list out of my head and into the computer. So, do you have any books to share? What books did you read or pass on to your daughter to read. Now, I didn’t tackle puberty in boys because, frankly, those books aren’t really on my radar. I wanted to present books I had read and could truly speak to. However, I will say that many of the authors who wrote these books for girls have written companion books for boys. Maybe that’s a post for another day?
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