Teens’ Top Ten is a “teen choice” list,where teens nominate and choose their favorite books of the previous year! Nominators are members of teen book groups in fifteen school and public libraries around the country. Nominations are posted on Support Teen Literature Day during National Library Week, and teens across the country vote on their favorite titles each year. Each day during the month of May, The Hub will feature a post about Teens’ Top Ten. Be sure to check in daily as we visit past winners and current nominees!
Lately, I’ve been thinking about imaginary girls the girls who dramatically and colorfully fill the stage of teen literature. Mia Cabana’s excellent blog post of a few weeks back mentioned the emerging â€œnoteworthy trend in butt-kicking girl heroinesâ€ like Katniss from The Hunger Games and Katsa from Graceling. It’s great to see the girls in teen literature coming into their own and being seen as powerful characters, but, as a hippy peacenik myself, I often wonder if the focus on martial strength in these books is entirely healthy. Can a teen-lit heroine be strong and capable, without being a grim and gritty action girl? Of course she can! This post will spotlight the variety of heroines in TTT books, whose power comes from other sources than bows and kung fu skills.
Nancy and Minerva are both trapped â€“ Nancy by her impending marriage to a rich but cruel Brazilian, Minerva by her place as a slave on Nancy’s father’s plantation. The usual course of action for a girl in the 1700’s would be to give up and make the best of a bad situation, but Nancy and Minerva decide to buck the norm and run away together to become pirates.
The Power: As pirates Nancy and Minerva do their share of pistol-shooting, sword-brandishing, dueling, pillaging, and the rest â€“ but the girls’ true strength is not in their ability with weapons. It’s their bravery in going into the unknown, their determination to pursue the lives they want instead of accepting the lives they were given, and their loyalty and love for each other as friends. It’s like the ultimate bromance story, but with girls. What would that even be called? Sistermance? Continue reading 31 Days of Teens’ Top Ten Butt-Kicking Babes Without Bows