Favourite Books for Girls Aged 7 and Above

Kelly asked “…any (book) recommendations for a 7 year old girl reader who has been reading a variety of novels but is in between books at the moment?”

I called my girls together and they came up with the following list of books:

  • Nim’s Island, Nim at Sea by Wendy Orr
  • The Tale of Despereaux, The Miraculous Journey of Edward
     by Kate DiCamillo
  • The Fleurville Trilogy and Monsieur Cadichon: Memoirs of a
    by Comtesse de Segur
  • Sophie’s Adventures and other books by Dick King Smith
  • Ballet Shoes, White Boots and other books by Noel Streatfeild
  • The Mitchells series and other books by Hilda Van Stockum. These can be found on the Bethlehem Books website where there are lots of other books the younger girls have enjoyed.
  • The Penderwicks series by Jean Birdsall
  • The Princess and Curdie and other books by George MacDonald
  • The Selfish Giant and The Happy Prince by Oscar Wilde

There are many old out-of-print girls’ series of books available as free ebooks such as…

  • The Campfire Girls
  • The Outdoor Girls
  • The Moving Picture Girls
  • The Bobbsey Twins

The links for these books can be found in my post More eBook Adventures.

A couple of years ago, the older girls put together a basket of books they thought Gemma-Rose might like to read (she was 7 at the time). They also gave their favourite book recommendations for Sophie. These lists can be found in my post Sophie’s Basket.

The books I read out loud to Sophie and Gemma-Rose over the last couple of years, can be found in the post Homeschool Registration Visit Part 1: Learning Activities. Gemma-Rose was aged 7-9 during this period.

Of course, all children read at different levels at different ages. Even if some of these books are too difficult for a 7 year old to read independently, she might still enjoy listening to them being read out loud. Being the youngest child of the family, Gemma-Rose had the opportunity to listen in when I was reading to her older siblings. I discovered she could understand and enjoy books I wouldn’t have thought she was ready for. She has also inherited a huge library of books. The older girls are always eager to share their favourite books with Gemma-Rose (and I am always coming across new titles.) Sometimes it must be great to be the baby of the family!

Disclaimer: Not all these books are Catholic. Some have secular themes, and some might even be frightening! I remember reading The Tale of Despeareaux to Gemma-Rose when she was about 5. Her eyes opened wide like saucers, and she clung to my arm while I read. But she didn’t want me to stop!! By the way, the book is MUCH better than the movie. The same is true for Nim’s Island.

What books would you recommend for a girl of about 7? Please stop and tell us your favourites.

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  1. Reply

    Hi sue. I used th mater amabilis recommendations when Brid was 7 to guide me through particularly as I had just begun homeschooling. I remember them being piled up next to s as we read through the list. Happy memories. God Bless

  2. Reply


    Thank you for your comment! I looked at the Mater Amabilis recommended book list. Yes! There's a few I'd forgotten about: E Nesbit, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, The Secret Garden and A Little Princess… So many good books.

    I will add the link here in case anyone wants to look: http://materamabilis.org/ma/level-1a/

    God bless!

  3. Reply

    MMM…the Betsy-Tacy Series, Baby Island, All-of-a-Kind Family series,Little house on the Prairie Series, you're right….soooo many good books!

    1. Reply


      I haven't heard of any of these books except for the Little House ones. A couple of friends on FB also recommended the Betsy Tacy series. I'm going to look them up. Thank you for your recommendations. We could read all day long and never run out of good books to read!

  4. Reply

    There's so many good books here. I can't really add much to it. Did anyone mention Little Women, Black Beauty, Charlotte's Web – and Enid Blyton. I hesitate to add Enid Blyton because I'm not sure about the stories. The girls have loved what they've read but, recently, I was reading Melanie a Famous Five story and I thought it was pretty awful. Name calling, mean characters, etc. What do you think? Does it follow the traditional fairy tale format with a clear right and wrong or do these books just not beautiful?

    God bless, Sue:-)

    1. Reply


      I remember enjoying many of Enid Blyton's books. There was one series about some children who sailed to an island, that I particularly enjoyed. I guess most children like to dream of going off on adventures like the characters in these books. They aren't deep reading but they are fun while the phase lasts. I don't know about the negative elements. Weren't there some mean spirited children in the Magic Faraway Tree? Sophie lost interest because she didn't like the characters.

      I haven't read Black Beauty for years. I must hunt out a copy.

      Thank you for your comment!

  5. Reply

    The Polish American girl series by Anne Pellowski – so much traditional Catholicism running throughout. We also loved the Ramona books by Beverly Cleary. Lissa Wiley's Martha series is wonderful as is the Golden Key by George MacDonald. We also still enjoy picture books here and bring them home by the armload. Many of them have very challenging vocabulary in a non-threatening format 😉

    1. Reply


      I read all the Ramona books with my eldest daughter. They have been favourites for many children for a long time. You've mentioned a couple of books we've never read. More for our wish list!

      We are still collecting picture books although our youngest is now 9. We love sitting together, turning pages and enjoying the illustrations, together with the story. One of our favourite author/illustrators is Tomie dePaola. An Australian author/illustrator we love is Alison Lester.

    2. Reply

      I'll have to check out Allison Lester 🙂 Recently we fell in love with Mies Van Hout's Happy. The girls had a blast using chalks on black construction paper to draw their own emotional fish 😉 Lita Judge is another 'new' illustrator we've enjoyed. Hmmm, I will have to post something on pic books so I'll remember new favorites! Atm we're reading First Farm in the Valley – one of the Pellowski books. They've been re-issued and I'm not sure what has been edited out. We managed to find the originals used several years ago.

    3. Reply


      Some new illustrators for us to check out. PLEASE post about your favourite picture books!

      I found the Pellowski books at the Book Depository and Bethlehem Books. Three of them are available as eBooks from Bethlehem Books too. Just bookmarked them!

      I hope you like Alison Lester!

  6. Reply

    We love "The Courage of Sarah Noble" and "The Hundred Dresses." They are both sort of simple stories- Pretty easy to read but they have deep meaningful messages. Oh- and "Sarah, Plain and Tall" too

    1. Reply


      I've heard of these books but we haven't read them. Actually, I think my friend Lisa might have reviewed The Hundred Dresses recently. I shall have to return to her blog and read her posts again.

      Thank you for your suggestions!

  7. Reply

    Thank you Sue! So many books to track down, some of them we have on our shelf and some I haven't heard of, so this gives me a great start. I love the idea of having a "book basket", my girls would all love that idea.
    God bless you 🙂

  8. Reply

    I've just been on the Bethlehem books website – it says they don't ship outside the US?

    1. Reply


      I buy the Bethlehem ebooks from their website. These can be downloaded instantly. You are right: they don't ship paper books outside the US. I have bought many of the Bethlehem books from the Book Depository instead. I also think they are available from Amazon but their postage costs are quite high. I hope this helps!

      I also hope you find some interesting books to fill baskets for your girls. Enjoy!

    2. Reply

      We don't "do" the whole e book thing, but I'll definitely have a look on the book depository – I often buy from them.
      I've also got a couple of your recommendations now on hold at the library and Gemma is nagging me to pick them up so she can get started 🙂

      Thanks again Sue.

    3. Reply


      I'm glad you were able to find some books at your library. It sounds like Gemma is an enthusiastic reader! I hope she enjoys the books.

  9. Reply

    I just noticed that we haven't read Return to Nihm's Island. I'll have to check it out – I loved the first book. Have you read Remember the Applewhites?

    1. Reply


      I've just remembered the book has a different title to the movie. It's called Nim at Sea. I liked it! From what I remember it had a good family theme.

      "Remember the Applewhites"? My friend Lisa reviewed "Surviving the Applewhites" on her blog recently: http://multi-tasking-mama.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/surviving-applewhites-book-review.html

      Maybe the two books are in the same series. I will check!

    2. Reply

      Oops – you're right! It is Surviving the Applewhites. So unschooly 🙂

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