Girl coders

Coding is such a cool skill to have. But I’ve never been very mathy and I’m afraid I’m hopeless with this sort of thing. So for those of us who don’t know the first thing about programming, fiction books are the only way to enjoy this super power vicariously. Here’s my list of great children’s and YA novels with girl computer whizes and math geeks.

rubyHello Ruby: Adventures in Coding by Linda Liukas
A lovely picture book for 5 to 8-year-olds who want to learn about coding. The story is charming and the tasks at the end of the book are a nice introduction to thinking like a computer programmer.


clickdClick’d by Tamara Ireland Stone

Coding isn’t an easy topic to write about, especially when the target readers are tweens. Tamara Ireland Stone manages to find the perfect balance in Click’d so that the details about coding are realistic but not overwhelming.

But Click’d isn’t really about coding. It’s about a smart girl, Allie, who’s a computer whiz. Her motivation and dedication were inspiring. My heart broke for her when her app crashed, but she’d proven to be strong throughout the story and even her failure didn’t break her. Instead, it made her question her motives, pick up the pieces and start from scratch, fixing not just the app but also her friendships.

Click’d was a fast-paced, fun, geeky read. Every middle-grader should read it for how empowering the story is.


squareThe Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Hapgood
What do cosmology and grief have in common? Wormholes!
This book is such an extraordinary, unexpected read. The protagonist’s voice is memorable. The intertwining of cosmology, mathematics, time travel, relationships, family, grief, love makes it for a captivating read. If mathematics and physics are not your thing, there’s still plenty of other goodies in this one.


illumi Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
While Kady is an incredibly smart hacker, it was her relationship with Ezra which completely hooked me. They were so funny, cute and sweet together (er … apart). At 600 pages, I read it in one sitting!



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