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The Significance of Strong Female Characters in Literature

As we encourage girls to become strong young women, we should also encourage authors to write female characters that represent these girls in stories. Many authors have already done this and continue to as they write more, but those that haven’t need that extra push.

Empowering female characters in books is important. It gives women someone to admire, to aspire to be like. This isn’t to say that women can’t be admirable or strong on their own, because they can. However, reading about a strong female might help boost confidence, something modern society often lowers.

I daresay that strong heroines are especially important in Young Adult novels, specifically because of the targeted audience. Young Adult is meant for teenagers, though it can be read by anyone. Imagine a teenage girl with low self-esteem picking up a book impulsively, and reading about a girl saving the world or overcoming social obstacles. The fictional girl’s adventures are likely to increase the teenage girl’s liking and acceptance of herself. Both are extremely significant in life, and as time passes it seems fewer girls are truly self-confident.

75% of girls with low self-esteem reported engaging in negative activities like cutting, bullying, smoking, drinking, or disordered eating. This compares to 25% of girls with high self-esteem.

This is a statistic that needs to change, and strong female leads in books, as well as in TV and movies, are a step in the right direction.

Young Adult books with empowering heroines:

  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  • Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
  • Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
  • Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
  • Bloodlines by Richelle Mead
  • Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
  • Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton
  • Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves
  • The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
  • The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare
  • Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare
  • Crossing the Line by Meghan Rogers
  • Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout

All of these books have amazing stories, and leading ladies that will hopefully be helpful in increasing your self-confidence and self-love. Remember: you are important, you are pretty, you can do this!

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Olivia Hensley
Written By

I'm a 16-year-old girl living in the United States. I love reading, photography, and traveling, although I'm still learning photography and haven't done much traveling yet. I spend most of my free time reading Young Adult books or talking about them on my blog. I love Disney, the 2007 Hairspray, summer, and unicorns.


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