Engaging Adventure Stories Featuring Girls

While I don’t like to put things in boy and girl categories, the reality is that this naturally occurs in our everyday lives. We often view boys as the tough, rugged, adventurous ones (and often read adventure stories featuring boys), and girls are viewed as more dainty –  having tea parties and playing with dolls. But how great is it when we can find something that breaks the mold and shows our children they can do and be anything!

Engaging Adventure Stories Featuring Girls: Check out these reprinted books from the 1900s that give a glimpse into life back then and adventure for girls! Combine history, adventure, and girls to help make learning more fun! Includes FREE Printables

About a year and a half ago my youngest daughter and I started particpating in a book club called Mighty Girls where all the books we read are books that feature a strong female character. This is a great way to build up our girls and show them how strong they can be and open up their world to the many things they can accomplish themselves!

More recently I was introduced to a grouping of historical adventure stories that feature girls from Aunt Claire Presents, published by Laboratory Books! These are already published books from the 1900s being brought to life again for our daughters (and sons) to enjoy!

{Disclaimer: I received a copy of The Automobile Girls at Newport and Grace Harlowe’s Freshman Year at High School for review and was compensated for my time in writing this review.  All opinions are my honest thoughts and I was not required to write a positive review. Please see my full Disclosure Policy for more details.

“Beginning around 1910, American publishers issued dozens of inexpensive hardcover series for girls—school adventures, outdoor and scouting adventures, and adventures centered around exciting new technologies, like the automobile and moving pictures.”

What Aunt Claire has done is select the adventure stories she finds to be the most fun and historically interesting. She then republishes them with new cover art (cover art, I might add, that is so fun and appealing!) What we thought was pretty cool though is that the original cover art is on the hardcover book underneath the dust jacket that contains the new cover art! So you get the best of the new and the history of the old!

Aunt Claire Presents, published by Laboratory Books Cover Art

Using Historical Adventure Stories for Homeschool History Studies

It is no secret that I LOVE using historical fiction for history studies in our homeschool. What I am enjoying about these republished books from Aunt Claire Presents is that they are super fun adventure stories that feature girls!

I often pick books based on a historical time period or event we are studying in our homeschool. This method, while more fun than just straight textbooks, still leaves my daughter knowing (and feeling) as though she is “doing schoolwork”. With these books I simply set them out for her to read. She actually chose Grace Harlowe’s Freshman Year at High School all on her own when she needed to read a historical fiction book as a part of her English curriculum!

The Aunt Claire Presents Adventure Stories:

Books out now:

  1. Vol. 1: The Automobile Girls at Newport by Laura Dent Cran – In this book, you will meet Ruth, Barbara, Mollie, and Grace, the four explorers who take to the road in Ruth’s bright red car, affectionately called Mr. A. Bubble. They are heading for Newport, Rhode Island, a resort town famous for mansions and millionaires.
  2. Vol. 2: Grace Harlowe’s Freshman Year at High School by Jessie Graham Flower, A.M. – In this book, you will meet Grace ― confident and athletic, a natural leader and a true friend. Then there’s the new girl, Anne―quiet, smart, and quite determined to win the freshman academic prize. There’s also Nora, who’s funny and sharp, and Jessica, who is rather good at detective work. And then of course there’s the mean girl, Miriam, who’s not about to let Anne take her place at the head of the class.

Books to be published in the Spring of 2018:

  1. Vol. 3: The Girl Aviators and the Phantom Airship by Margaret Burnham – In this book, you will meet Peggy Prescott and her brother Roy, two orphans who drop out of school and spend every last dollar they have to fulfill their father’s dying wish—to construct a new type of aeroplane, better and more reliable than any other. With the help of their best friends Jess and Jimsy, can they get their Golden Butterfly in the air and win the $5,000 Young Aviator’s Prize before the scheming banker Simon Harding forecloses on their aunt’s farm? Or will Simon’s son Fanning carry off the prize with the Phantom Airship he’s constructing in secret with his unsavory helpers?
  2. Vol. 4: Grace Harlowe’s Sophomore Year at High School by Jessie Graham Flower, A.M.

Extending the Adventure Stories Learning

At the beginning of each one of the Aunt Claire Presents, published by Laboratory Books you will find an illustrated introduction that gives historical background and context to the story you are about to read. It’s like a combination of your lovable granny telling you a story and an encyclopedia providing you period images and details!

Vintage image from The Automobile Girls at Newport from Aunt Claire Presents, published by Laboratory Books.

Another great learning resource can be found on the Aunt Claire Presents. There you will find Writing Prompts and Discussion Questions for each one of the books. These are a great way to help us homeschool moms extend the learning!

One more thing we found useful was to keep a vocabulary list. Since these books were written in the 1900s there were terms that my daughter was unsure of. For instance, “mam’s flat”, refers to where she lived, or the term suffragettes which refers to a woman seeking the right to vote through organized protest. I had her write down the words as she went so we could talk about them and come up with a definition she could understand.

Learning About the Packard Automobile featured in The Automobile Girls at Newport

Beyond reading the illustrated introduction and using the Writing Prompts and Discussion questions, let me show you how we dug deeper and learned a little more history!

The bright red car known as Mr. A Bubble in The Automobile Girls at Newport is a Packard Touring car. We found this video that shows one up close and personal and talks a little bit about it.

Then I created printables (see the images below and right click and save as to print them for yourself) related to the Packard Touring Car for my daughter.

The first one is a Packard Touring Car Coloring Sheet:

Packard Touring Car Coloring Sheet from Starts At Eight

The second is for those of you that notebook and would want your student to be able to add some details they learned about the Packard Touring Car. It is a Packard Touring Car Notebooking Page:

Packard Touring Car Notebooking Page from Starts At Eight

All in all these engaging adventure stories from Aunt Claire Presents make fun read alouds or read on your own books for girls ages 9-13, as well as allow us homeschooling moms to “sneak in” a little history learning too!

Other Books for Girls

10 Glitzy Chapter Books for Girls from Starts At EightFavorite Books For Girls