I love books, but I especially love books that feature strong women. Now, that’s not to say that every time a book depicts a strong women it’s favorable. Women are human too. We make mistakes. However, it’s seeing various female experiences represented on the page that assures me that the future of publishing is bright. So many of the “classics” we are forced to read in school focus on male protagonists, but there are so many great books coming out in 2020 with female protagonists. Here’s a look at 10 of them across the genres that make up young adult literature. 

These books can also fulfill the “A Book Published in 2020” prompt for the FFL 2020 Reading Challenge.

Of Curses and Kisses by Sandhya Menon

This modern retelling of Beauty and the Beast is set at a Colorado boarding school for the elite and the royal. Jaya, the protagonist, is a princess who knows what she wants, stick to her morals, and is not afraid to stand up when others are being taken advantage of–including herself. 

Foul is Fair by Hannah Capin

This adaptation of Macbeth is perfect for the anger of the #MeToo era. After an assault, Jade decides to take matters into her own hands with the help of her friends. This book, with lots of death but amazing prose, is a must read. 

10 Things I Hate About Pinky by Sandhya Menon

If you love teen romantic comedies, strong women who stand up for what they believe in, and young love, you need this book. It’s a fresh take on the fake dating trope in literature with a summer lake setting and a strong female protagonist who learns to love herself and others. 

Woven in Moonlight by Isabel Ibanez

Princesses, decoys, body doubles and ancient curses all collide in this novel, when Ximena enters into a marriage of deceit in search of an ancient relic that just might save them all. 

Tweet Cute by Emma Lord

Social media lovers beware of this adorable romantic comedy, because you’ll want to start a tweet war with every brand you see. Two teens take to Twitter to defend their grilled cheese recipes, and chaos, cuteness, and wholesome family content ensues. 

Black Girl Unlimited by Echo Brown

A modern day wizard? That’s Echo, in this semi-autobiographical imagining of a New York City with magic everywhere. How can Echo navigate two worlds at once without losing who she is? This debut novel is getting a lot of buzz!

Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo

The award-winning author of The Poet X is back with another novel in verse. This time, two girls from different world find each other, and themselves, as they deal with the aftermath of a plane accident that killed their father. Acevedo always writes the best female characters, ones who make you curse and cheer for them simultaneously. 

Yes No Maybe So by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed

If you like politics, you’re going to want to read this (liberal leaning) story about two teens from different backgrounds who come together while working on a special election race in Georgia. It’s timely, and while the politics are a little heavy handed, it’s got a solid heart at its core and interesting protagonists. 

All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace

Magic, princesses, and mermaids? Adalyn Grace gives us a new female lead we can’t look away from: Amora. Come with Amora deep below the waves as she fights for her crown against the creatures of the dark and a new magic no one understands. 

Scavenge the Stars by Tara Sim

This genderbent retelling of the Count of Monte Cristo is perfect for female fans of the classics who think we need a little more representation on the page. Our protagonist, Amaya, can stand her own ground and get revenge, all with a little flirtation on the side.

Aryssa D
FFL Cabinet Member