21 Empowering Books For Tweens

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Find the perfect book for your tween from our list of top picks below. With a combination of fiction, nonfiction and a range of authors, there’s something to help every tween learn to take control of their own destinies and never give up. Take a look below. 

Building Automation by Laya Saul

This product was recommended by Muhammad Mateen Khan from PureVPN

It covers a lot of topics that teens need and want to read about: from sensitive areas like sexual abuse, pain, and hard times, to issues like understanding how to deal with peer pressure and making the right choice about drugs. These are the topics that teens asked Aunt Laya to write about. They also asked for inspiration and ideas about goals, life’s changes, and sex. Laya Saul does not shy away from any topic that can empower a young adult. She gives teens the tools to meet life s trials head on! Laya Saul encourages her readers to use challenges as stepping-stones. This comforting and strengthening book reads like a letter written from the heart. Although it was written with teens in mind, the book is finding its way into the hands of readers spanning generations! Wisdom is practical, timeless, and helpful.

Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren

This product was recommended by Jeremy Ong from HUSTLR

This book is just got the perfect sense of humor for tweens who ages 9-13. Pipa is an example of a self-reliant, funny, and strong girl. Both boys and girls can read and enjoy this book. Moreover, they will learn good vocabulary and new phrases, it would be great if parents share reading Pippa Longstocking with their children so they can talk about the adventures and lessons learned.

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

This product was recommended by Mollie Newton from Pet Me Twice

Ella Enchanted is quite the classic when it comes to teaching children to find their own path. The story is about a girl who is given the ‘gift of obedience’ by a foolish fairy. Since she was born, Ella is trapped with obeying any order no matter how ridiculous. Her stepfamily is quick to pick up on the spell and took advantage of it by ordering Ella to do whatever they want. But Ella decides she’s not having it and embarks on a journey to return her ‘gift’ to her fairy godmother. The entire story sends a meaningful message to tweens: that they must take control of their destiny and find their own happiness. There may be many voices telling them what to do and where to go, but they must continue to follow their inner voice.

The Diary Of a Young Girl by Anne Frank

This product was recommended by David Harling from Keystone English

Anne’s diary has always been an inspiring read, but it’s particularly poignant this year as many of us struggle with life in lockdown. Anne’s frustrations with her life in lockdown seem eerily familiar, yet she maintains her sense of humour and looks to the future with hope. Knowing how it ends for her, brings a melancholy sense to the whole book. It makes you appreciate the freedoms we currently have, and want to live your life to the fullest extent possible.

Life Lessons from a 40 something by Pamela Sommers

This product was recommended by Pamela Sommers from PamelaSommers

This book is full of big-hearted advice to help you through everyday life and empower you to feel your very best. It will motivate you to step out of your comfort zone and unlock your highest potential.

Escaping Into the Night by D. Dina Friedman

This product was recommended by D. Dina Friedman from DDinaFriedman

This is an inspiring tale of a young girl who escapes her ghetto during the Holocaust and lives in a community of Jews in the forest. It is modeled the story of the Tuvia Bielski settlements, which were featured in the movie Defiance.

Witch Wars by Alane Adams

This product was recommended by Alane Adams from AlaneAdams

Abigail continues to be a fantastical role model for young girls in the third instillation of the Witches of Orkney series. In the first two books, Abigail must learn to wield her powers for good and overcome the forces threatening her and her friends. Witch Wars is no different. It’s Abigail’s second year at the Tarkana Witch Academy and she must unsuspected allies and trust her intuition to prevent a war that could mean the end to all of them. Tweens will find themselves empowered by the wit and strength Abigail carries, and maybe they’ll even want to enroll in the Academy this fall to join Abigail and her friends on their next adventure.

Changing Ways by Julia Tannenbaum

This product was recommended by Julia Tannenbaum from Wacky Writer

I published my debut novel Changing Ways two years ago when I was eighteen. The story, which follows a high schooler’s journey to overcome mental illness, is largely based on my personal experiences and provides an authentic, thoughtful portrayal of an issue so many young people battle every day. The protagonist is flawed yet strong and reliable, and the lessons she learns on her journey from sickness to health are universal. Written for youth by a youth, Changing Ways saved my life and I’m confident it will be able to help, educate, and, at the very least, entertain others as well.

Color Me In by Natasha Díaz

This product was recommended by Nicole Garcia from Most Craft

This is a story about a Nevaeh, a sixteen-year-old girl who discovers her voice amidst the social prejudice surrounding her biracial roots. All while experiencing what it’s like to be in love for the first time.

Strong Is the New Pretty by Kate T. Parker

This product was recommended by Nicole Garcia from Most Craft

This is a powerful book that celebrates the strength and authenticity of what it means to be a girl through a series of pictures with powerful messages of affirmation and self-worth.

The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill

This product was recommended by Dave Pedley from Your Cub

This beautifully written fairytale covers themes such as love, loss and identity. It’s compelling and with a heartbreaking ending but one that could endear any young boy and girl to the story.

The Best Man by Richard Peck

This product was recommended by Dave Pedley from Your Cub

This coming-of-age story is perfect for a young boy. It tells the story of a kid who’s looking for positive male role models in his life.

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang

This product was recommended by Dave Pedley from Your Cub

This all-American boy story is about a young man’s quest to deal with his feeling of conflicting identities – a Chinese family raised in America.

Stella By Starlight By Sharon M. Draper

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The heroine, Stella, in this story is relatable and her actions inspire those around her in the story as well as the reader. The world seems stacked against who Stella is, but she doesn’t let anything stop her from fighting for what’s right and fair. Through reading the story, tweens will also learn some of the history surrounding race relations and voting rights and how progress is something that must be worked for.

Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai

This product was recommended by Sonya Schwartz from Her Norm

This is a picture book written by Malala Yousafzai which showcases her autobiography as a child. It tells how she dreamt of having a magic pencil to draw things into reality, things that she experiences like problems, events like wars, etc. that how she has wished she can just draw the solutions and make them come true. It is empowering in a sense that it shows that children at this age have such imaginations and still pursue their principle when they grow older. The writer became a global campaigner for education rights.

The Solar System’s Prophecies by Varak Kaloustian

This product was recommended by Varak Kaloustian from The Legend of V

The Solar System’s Prophecies has a central theme of figuring out who you are. In an era where social and online distractions dominate teen life, finding the answer to your soul can be a grueling task, but this book, written and published while the author himself was a teen, provides personal and direct insight into this matter and more, all while delivering a simple, fun, and engaging story.

I Like Myself! Written by Karen Beaumont

This product was recommended by Yaniv Masjedi from Nextiva

The tween stage in people’s lives is confusing. Tweens are no longer children, but they’re still too young to officially join the older teenagers, making this phase a challenging and delicate time for people. Luckily, this book can help tweens navigate through this stage by embracing their individuality so they can enjoy their journey towards self-discovery. Beaumont beautifully captures the essence of insecurities and how tweens should handle these negative emotions. The book boasts a Dr Seuss-like artwork, making the experience more enjoyable. The literary ode helps encourage a sassy way of handling insecurities so tweens can practice self-love and self-acceptance after finishing the book.

A Sweet Smell of Roses by Eric Velazquez

This product was recommended by Arash Fayz from LA Tutors 123

This book includes an incredible introduction to the Civil Rights movement for young teens who may not have an understanding of the topic. By following two sisters who secretly join a nearby rally led by Dr. King, it inspires youth advocacy and speaking up for causes you believe in.

Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes

This product was recommended by Arash Fayz from LA Tutors 123

This book looks at Hurricane Katrina’s disasterous aftermath through the eyes of a 12 year old girl who must re-learn and re-prioritze her surroundings. It details early teenage friendships and relationships as they evolve around massive changes.

Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin

This product was recommended by Arash Fayz from LA Tutors 123

This book follows a 12 year old girl with autism who loses her dog during a massive thunderstorm. After learning her beloved dog may in fact belong to someone else, she begins a journey of self-discovery as she chooses between keeping her dog or returning him back home. Along the way she confronts major social challenges and soon becomes empowered by letting go of control..

Song For A Whale by Lynne Kelly

This product was recommended by Arash Fayz from LA Tutors 123

This book tracks a 12-year-old girl who is often made fun of in school for being the only deaf person in the class. She soon feels less lonely once discovering a specific whale 3,000 miles away is also deaf. Using radios and tech gadgetry, she puts her mind to communicate with the whale and along the way learns determination and grit can carry her beyond her own expectations.

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