90 books like Girls Who Run the World

By Diana Kapp, Bijou Karman (illustrator),

Here are 90 books that Girls Who Run the World fans have personally recommended if you like Girls Who Run the World. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of Girl Warriors: How 25 Young Activists Are Saving the Earth

Catherine Thimmesh Author Of Girls Solve Everything: Stories of Women Entrepreneurs Building a Better World

From my list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m someone who believes the accomplishments of women have been glossed over for far too long. I'm passionate about sharing the stories of women and girls that the world at large still tends to ignore. It’s critical to share these stores and to give face and voice to women. Social entrepreneurship, the topic of my recent book Girls Solve Everything, has fascinated me for some time:  creative problem solving, tackling problems in our communities and the world, creating a business to find and facilitate the solution. Representation matters. I’m determined to write about and share the stories of strong, innovative, creative women and girls. Our future depends on them.

Catherine's book list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers

Catherine Thimmesh Why did Catherine love this book?

By now, we all know the Earth needs saving. And most of us try to do our part – recycling, composting, using less plastic, etc. But it’s hardly enough...yet still, what more can we as individuals do? That question didn’t stop the young activists in Girl Warriors. These young women have Stepped Up! Over and over again, I found myself awed at the stories that included speaking at a UN Climate Change Conference (Isabella Fallahi) and organizing a Global Cleanup Day that included 27 countries (Lilly Platt). The young women profiled are not afraid to tackle large, seemingly insurmountable problems if it means saving the Earth. I loved how in-depth the profiles went on the various actions being undertaken. If they can do it, why not me? Or you?

By Rachel Sarah,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Girl Warriors as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"It gives me true hope to read about the phenomenal young women of Girl Warriors. Their fierce commitment to the future of our precious planet is as inspiring as it is vital." —Kate Schatz, New York Times bestselling author of Rad American Women A-Z and Rad Women Worldwide 

2021 Skipping Stones Honors Book in Nature and Ecology

Girl Warriors: How 25 Young Activists Are Saving the Earthtells the stories of 25 climate leaders under age 25.They've led hundreds of thousands of people in climate strikes, founded non-profits, given TED talks, and sued their governments. These young eco-activistspresenta hopeful picture of…


Book cover of Living the Confidence Code: Real Girls. Real Stories. Real Confidence.

Catherine Thimmesh Author Of Girls Solve Everything: Stories of Women Entrepreneurs Building a Better World

From my list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m someone who believes the accomplishments of women have been glossed over for far too long. I'm passionate about sharing the stories of women and girls that the world at large still tends to ignore. It’s critical to share these stores and to give face and voice to women. Social entrepreneurship, the topic of my recent book Girls Solve Everything, has fascinated me for some time:  creative problem solving, tackling problems in our communities and the world, creating a business to find and facilitate the solution. Representation matters. I’m determined to write about and share the stories of strong, innovative, creative women and girls. Our future depends on them.

Catherine's book list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers

Catherine Thimmesh Why did Catherine love this book?

It’s one thing to tell young girls (and women...and men and boys) to “be” more confident. To have confidence in themselves and their abilities. Easy to say. Harder to do. Living the Confidence Code bridges that divide in extraordinary fashion. I love how this is a compilation of real girls sharing their real stories of risk-taking, successes, and failures – and, most importantly to me – sharing their thought processes on why they did a certain thing or reacted a certain way. A very engaging and informative book. Empty platitudes are gone and what remains are relatable stories providing multiple templates for finding – and building – your own inner confidence. 

By Katty Kay, Claire Shipman, Jillellyn Riley

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Living the Confidence Code as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

AN INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

New from the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling authors of The Confidence Code for Girls!

The best way to understand confidence is to see it in action. That's why bestselling authors Katty Kay, Claire Shipman, and JillEllyn Riley have collected 30 true stories of real girls, pursuing their passions, struggling and stumbling, but along the way figuring out how to build their own special brand of confidence.

From Bali to Brazil, South Africa to Seattle, Australia to Afghanistan, these girls took risks, doubted themselves, and sometimes failed. But…


Book cover of Rad Girls Can: Stories of Bold, Brave, and Brilliant Young Women

Catherine Thimmesh Author Of Girls Solve Everything: Stories of Women Entrepreneurs Building a Better World

From my list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m someone who believes the accomplishments of women have been glossed over for far too long. I'm passionate about sharing the stories of women and girls that the world at large still tends to ignore. It’s critical to share these stores and to give face and voice to women. Social entrepreneurship, the topic of my recent book Girls Solve Everything, has fascinated me for some time:  creative problem solving, tackling problems in our communities and the world, creating a business to find and facilitate the solution. Representation matters. I’m determined to write about and share the stories of strong, innovative, creative women and girls. Our future depends on them.

Catherine's book list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers

Catherine Thimmesh Why did Catherine love this book?

Athletes, Activists, Achievers. Rad Girls Can is chock-o-block with engaging biographical sketches of girls and young women who have taken the world by storm in nearly every discipline. Whether they’re succeeding in traditionally male-dominated sports, fighting for climate action, or for education for girls, or accomplishing great things as scientists and inventors, each story is compelling and awe-inspiring. I wish this existed when I was young – it literally gives concrete examples of real girls doing just about anything they put their minds to. The wide-ranging topics and diverse women enhance the engagement factor. I loved how readers are free to browse and focus on the stories that most appeal to them (chances are good, that will be most, if not all of them). Comprehensive, engaging, inspiring. What more can you ask for?

By Kate Schatz, Miriam Klein Stahl (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rad Girls Can as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times best-selling authors of Rad Women Worldwide and Rad American Women A-Z, a bold and brave collection of stories and art about inspiring and accomplished girls who have made positive impacts on the world before the age of 20.

You might know the stories of Malala Yousafzai, Anne Frank, Jazz Jennings, and Joan of Arc. But have you heard about Yusra Mardini, a Syrian refugee who swam a sinking boat to shore, saved twenty lives, then went on to compete as an Olympic swimmer? Or Trisha Prabhu, who invented an anti-cyberbullying app at age 13? Or…


Book cover of The Startup Squad

Catherine Thimmesh Author Of Girls Solve Everything: Stories of Women Entrepreneurs Building a Better World

From my list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m someone who believes the accomplishments of women have been glossed over for far too long. I'm passionate about sharing the stories of women and girls that the world at large still tends to ignore. It’s critical to share these stores and to give face and voice to women. Social entrepreneurship, the topic of my recent book Girls Solve Everything, has fascinated me for some time:  creative problem solving, tackling problems in our communities and the world, creating a business to find and facilitate the solution. Representation matters. I’m determined to write about and share the stories of strong, innovative, creative women and girls. Our future depends on them.

Catherine's book list on you’ve-got-this-girl young readers

Catherine Thimmesh Why did Catherine love this book?

This lively middle-grade fiction series hits all the right notes: an engrossing, page-turner of budding friendships, strong girl characters, fun competition, and diverse characters that readers easily connect with and relate to. Throw in a common childhood experience – setting up a lemonade stand – but amp it up just enough so it’s more than a lemonade stand...it’s a startup business. I loved that The Startup Squad is a fun read that also manages to introduce business concepts and practices like: idea notebooks, brainstorming, marketing, sales, location, and quality merchandising. Readers can be forgiven if they take their time getting to the next book in the series – chances are, they’ll be a bit preoccupied dreaming up their own new businesses.

By Brian Weisfeld, Nicole C. Kear,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Startup Squad as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

The start of an exciting new series, The Startup Squad encourages the entrepreneurial spirit in young readers with a fun, accessible voice and a heartwarming story of friendship.

When their 6th grade class holds a fundraiser, four girls who barely know each other are tasked with starting a lemonade stand - and competing against their classmates to raise the most money. But Resa just takes charge without asking, Amelia keeps asking questions, Harriet keeps getting distracted, and Didi cracks under pressure. The recipe for success is tough to perfect, and there'll be some sweet and sour moments along the way…


Book cover of Get Your Career in Shape: A Five-Step Guide to Achieve the Success You Need, Want, and Deserve

Zakiya Akerele Author Of Dump Your Degree: How to Repurpose Your Education, Control Your Career, and Gain Financial Freedom

From my list on managing your career and finances after college.

Why am I passionate about this?

Many degree holders experience career and financial challenges they aren't prepared to handle. I know this first hand because after completing my Ph.D., I faced joblessness and massive student loan debt, and after becoming a professor, I saw my students encounter similar situations. This prompted me to write, Dump Your Degree: How to Repurpose Your Education, Control Your Career, and Gain Financial Freedom. My mission is to provide tangible solutions to students and early career professionals so that they stop solely relying on their degrees but instead learn how to use the sum of their knowledge, skills, and talents in unique ways to create meaningful, viable careers.

Zakiya's book list on managing your career and finances after college

Zakiya Akerele Why did Zakiya love this book?

This insightful guide gives readers relatable, practical advice on developing their careers. Its message is empowering and rooted in proven methods that lead to success. Dr. Steele Flippin's SHAPE framework presents the importance of having solid finances, the true meaning of hard work, how to be your own advocate in the workplace, perseverance, and continued learning. Get Your Career in Shape is an invaluable resource for career success. 

By Candace Steele Flippin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Get Your Career in Shape as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Instead of holding our careers down or back, women can rise―on our terms. Are you ready to own your power and take the next step in your career?

With groundbreaking research on women's leadership, Dr. Candace Steele Flippin's guidebook empowers women to "challenge the glass ceiling system within their own minds" (Tyree C. Daniels, executive chairman at Memphis College Preparatory).

Women's careers are held back by cultural norms, gender bias, sexism, and self-policing.

And too often, their self-efficacy―the belief in their ability to be successful―is at risk.

TEDx speaker Dr. Candace Steele Flippin has been recognized as one of the…


Book cover of Breaking Ice and Breaking Glass: Leading in Uncharted Waters

Sally Helgesen Author Of How Women Rise: Break the 12 Habits Holding You Back from Your Next Raise, Promotion, or Job

From my list on actually being a leader.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have spent the last 32 years of my life working with women leaders and aspiring women leaders all over the world and helping organizations to create more inclusive cultures. As a result, I’ve been exposed to extraordinary leaders and to terrible leaders and have seen up close the impact they have on people’s lives. This has inspired me to write 7 books and thousands of articles exploring different aspects of the leader’s journey and to deliver leadership workshops in 32 countries. What do I love? Sharing the stories that inspire me.

Sally's book list on actually being a leader

Sally Helgesen Why did Sally love this book?

Vice Admiral Stosz’s extraordinary career as a US Coast Guard leader culminated in her being the first (and so far only) woman to head a major service academy. I came away from her memoir hugely inspired by her honesty and courage. I also loved her vivid descriptions of long stints on the icebreakers that ply Arctic and Antarctic waters in order to prepare the way for scientific teams, often as the only woman. Her grace and goodwill in those adventure-filled situations come shining through– and sea narratives by women are very rare.

By Vice Admiral Sandra Stosz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Breaking Ice and Breaking Glass as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"A prime resource for any leader's library."

-James Mattis, General, US Marines (ret), and 26th Secretary of Defense


Today, our nation is like a ship being tossed in tumultuous seas. The winds and waves of change have divided and distanced our society, threatening to wash away the very principles our nation was founded upon. Now more than ever, our nation needs leaders with the moral courage to stand strong and steady-leaders capable of uniting people in support of a shared purpose by building the trust and respect necessary for organizations and their people to thrive.

In Breaking Ice and Breaking…


Book cover of Hit Refresh: The Quest to Rediscover Microsoft's Soul and Imagine a Better Future for Everyone

Ruchira Chaudhary Author Of Coaching: The Secret Code to Uncommon Leadership

From my list on uncommon/exceptional leadership.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm an executive coach, adjunct faculty at several top-tier business schools, and run a boutique firm consulting firm focused on organizational strategy solutions. My diverse and eclectic background in mergers & acquisitions, organization effectiveness, and strategy execution, coupled with two decades of experience in emerging markets in Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa, helps me grasp challenging people issues. I'm passionate about the topic of leaders as coaches having written several papers and columns. My research, and writing led Penguin to commission my book Coaching: The Secret Code to Uncommon Leadership that, released globally in late 2021 to much acclaim, is recommended by several academics as an essential read for aspiring and experienced managers. 

Ruchira's book list on uncommon/exceptional leadership

Ruchira Chaudhary Why did Ruchira love this book?

Hit Refresh is such a fascinating tale – its Satya Nadella’s life story – his childhood in India, immigrating to the U.S. and the life lessons learned to lead along the way.

He succinctly and candidly tells the inside story of how a company rediscovered its soul and transformed itself. 

My favorite part is how Nadella describes his role at the helm of Microsoft: The C in CEO for Nadella stood for culture. He liked to believe the CEO is the curator of an organization’s culture.

"Anything is possible for a company when its culture is about listening, learning, and harnessing individual passions and talents to the company’s mission. Creating that kind of culture is my chief job as CEO. The culture change I wanted was centred on delivering a growth mindset, to be customer-obsessed, diverse, and inclusive, and working as One Microsoft to get us there."

He devoted much…

By Satya Nadella, Greg Shaw, Jill Tracie Nichols

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hit Refresh as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"At the core, Hit Refresh, is about us humans and the unique quality we call empathy, which will become ever more valuable in a world where the torrent of technology will disrupt the status quo like never before." - Satya Nadella from Hit Refresh

"Satya has charted a course for making the most of the opportunities created by technology while also facing up to the hard questions." - Bill Gates from the Foreword of Hit Refresh

The New York Times bestseller Hit Refresh is about individual change, about the transformation happening inside of Microsoft and the technology that will soon…


Book cover of I Shouldn't Be Telling You This: How to Ask for the Money, Snag the Promotion, and Create the Career You Deserve

PeggySue Wells Author Of The 10 Best Decisions a Single Mom Can Make: A Biblical Guide for Navigating Family Life on Your Own

From my list on being a single mom and staying sane.

Why am I passionate about this?

“Eminently quotable, PeggySue Wells is a tonic — warm like your favorite blanket, bracing like a stiff drink.”

History buff and tropical island votary, PeggySue parasails, skydives, scuba dives, and has taken (but not passed) pilot training. The bestselling author of 30 books including the What To Do series, The Slave Across the Street, Bonding With Your Child Through Boundaries, Homeless for the Holidays, Chasing Sunrise, and The Ten Best Decisions A Single Mom Can Make, PeggySue’s most challenging and rewarding adventure was solo parenting seven children. With one in four homes single mom-led, PeggySue teamed with Pam Farrel to offer practical help and tangible tips to moms navigating parenting solo.

PeggySue's book list on being a single mom and staying sane

PeggySue Wells Why did PeggySue love this book?

A spunky and accomplished businesswoman and author, Kate White carved her own highly successful career and provides a practical and proven how-to for women to follow. Women wear many hats simultaneously (Think Seuss’ Ten Apples Up On Top) and Kate gives witty, wise, straight-talk for moms on how to balance parenting and craft a career you enjoy. You have talents and potential, I Shouldn’t Be Telling You This is step-by-step guidance to hone your abilities and navigate challenges. These are essential tips from the gutsy innovator who helped increase Cosmopolitan Magazine's circulation by half a million copies per month.

By Kate White,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I Shouldn't Be Telling You This as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Whether you've just settled into your first work cubicle, getting back to work after taking some time off for kids, or are looking to get that corner office, I Shouldn't Be Telling You This gives you all the secrets you need to become a success, go big with it, and savor every second. Here, Kate White shares the five essential secrets every woman needs to know, as well as the crucial lesson you need to achieve your dreams: go big or go home-do what's unexpected and always keep your career trajectory in mind. Jam-packed with insider strategies, interviews with women…


Book cover of The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story

Jeff Davidson Author Of The 60 Second Innovator

From my list on becoming more innovative.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am the recognized expert on work-life balance, harmony, and integrative issues, and since 2009, hold the registered trademark from the USPTO as the “Work-Life Balance Expert®." My books have been featured in 68 of the top 75 American newspapers and, in two instances, advertised in Time Magazine and The Wall Street Journal. In all, 16 of my books are published in Chinese, among them Simpler Living, appearing as a 3-volume set, Everyday Project Management, The 60 Second Innovator, The 60 Second Organizer, The 60 Second Self-Starter, Ten Minute Guide to Time Management, and Ten Minute Guide to Project Management. I also have 13 books published in Arabic.

Jeff's book list on becoming more innovative

Jeff Davidson Why did Jeff love this book?

It is easier to say what the ‘new, new thing’ is not than to say what it is. It is not necessarily a new invention. It is not necessarily a new idea – most everything has been considered by someone, at some point. The author explains that the new, new thing is a notion, poised to be taken seriously in the marketplace. It is an item that is a tiny push away from general acceptance and when it gets that push, will change the world.

In 1921, Thorsted Veblen predicted that engineers would one day rule the U.S. economy. He argued that the economy was premised on technology and that engineers (in today’s terms, ‘computer science majors’) were the only ones who understood how technology worked. So, inevitably they would use their superior knowledge to seize power from the financiers, captains of industry, and other business elites.

New growth theory…

By Michael Lewis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The New New Thing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the weird glow of the dying millennium, Michael Lewis set out on a safari through Silicon Valley to find the world's most important technology entrepreneur. He found this in Jim Clark, a man whose achievements include the founding of three separate billion-dollar companies. Lewis also found much more, and the result-the best-selling book The New New Thing-is an ingeniously conceived history of the Internet revolution.


Book cover of Can You Keep a Secret?

Victoria Browne Author Of Gut Feeling

From my list on vacation reads about love and friendship.

Why am I passionate about this?

Romance and chick-lit books hooked me as a young adult. It was this genre that inspired me to write. Since publishing my first book Gut Feeling in 2012 I’ve since written three chick-lit novels and a holiday rom-com screenplay. The fiction world of perfectly unperfect romance never fails.   

Victoria's book list on vacation reads about love and friendship

Victoria Browne Why did Victoria love this book?

This was the book that inspired me to write chick lit and romance novels. After reading Can You Keep a Secret?, I went on to read every book Kinsella wrote. Timeless. But there’s something about this one that is special. A touch of excitement us romance readers love when a bigshot highflyer falls in love with the normal girl on the street. Classic.

By Sophie Kinsella,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Can You Keep a Secret? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The hilarious romantic comedy from NUMBER ONE BESTSELLING AUTHOR Sophie Kinsella . . . soon to be a major motion picture!

Emma is like every girl in the world. She has a few little secrets.

Secrets from her mother:
1. I lost my virginity in the spare bedroom to Danny Nussbaum while Mum and Dad were downstairs watching TV.

... From her boyfriend:
2. I'm a size twelve. Not a size eight, like Connor thinks.
3. I've always thought Connor looks a bit like Ken. As in Barbie and Ken.

... From her colleagues:
4. When Artemis really annoys me…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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