Celebrating Sisters in YA Lit

Sisters—they may embarrass or infuriate you from time to time, but they’re always there to help in trying times like when when you need money to buy some tasty pickled limes to share with your buds at school, or when your government wants you to fight to the death for sport. You can never trust anyone the way you trust a sister!

August 6th is National Sisters Day 2017. Celebrate the day by letting your sisters know you love them, and by sharing one of these great sister stories:

*Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen

It is a truth universally acknowledged that when you have four sisters, they’re going to cause you some grief. In Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth Bennet must navigate her relationship with Mr. Darcy, while also looking out for her four sisters. The Bennet Sisters—Jane, Elizabeth, Mary, Kitty, Lydia—are the OG sister crew.


*Little Women – Louisa May Alcott

The March sisters are personal favorites of mine. Little Women follows Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy, four sisters living in Concord, MA at the end of the Civil War. Like the Bennets, their relationships with each other are complex, and though they are all wildly different, their sisterly bond always pulls them back together no matter how far apart they may drift.


*Angus Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging – Louise Rennison

Although Georgia’s relationship with her 3 year old sister Libby is not the focus of this story, the way Georgia lovingly puts up with Libby’s quirks nicely illuminates her character. Plus who can forget the hilarious scene in which Libby tells Georgia’s crush Robbie that “Georgia did a big poo this morning.” Ah, the joys of having a little sister!


*Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins

Though Katniss and Prim Everdeen have opposing personalities, they are obviously devoted to each other. When Prim is selected for the Hunger Games, big sis Katniss sacrifices herself and volunteers for the job in order to keep Prim safe.


*To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before – Jenny Han

The Song Girls—Margot, Lara Jean, and Kitty—are a big part of what makes this series by Jenny Han so appealing. Since their mom passed away, Margot and Lara Jean have served as surrogates for their precocious younger sister Kitty. When Margot goes off to college, Lara Jean and Kitty have to learn to care for one another without her stabilizing presence.


*American Street – Ibi Zoboi

When Fabiola moves from Haiti to Detroit to live with her cousins Chantal, Donna and Pri (aka the Three Bees for brains, beauty, and brawn), they immediately take her in and treat her like a fourth sister. Everybody knows that the Bees have each other’s backs, and Chantal, Donna and Pri make sure she knows that they’ve got her back too.


*Fangirl – Rainbow Rowell

Twins Cath and Wren have always been extremely close. Though Cath is an introvert and Wren is a little more wild, since their mom took off they’ve stuck together in order to care for each other and for their dad. Their love for the Simon Snow fandom further strengthens their bond. In Fangirl, the sisters are starting college and their relationship experiences some growing pains.


*The Passion of Dolssa – Julie Berry

In The Passion of Dolssa, Botille, Sazia and Plazensa are three sisters doing it for themselves in 13th century France. They run a tavern in which Plazensa brews beer and draws the eyes of all the men who pass through, Botille works as a matchmaker, and Sazia is a fortune teller. When they come across Dolssa, an accused heretic on the run, the brave trio takes her in.

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