This post originally appeared on Panels, which is now Book Riot Comics
With the holidays fast approaching, are you stressing out over what to get the little Geek Girl in your life? Well, fear not: here are some great gifts guaranteed to elicit screams of glee from your Geek Girl.
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl volume 1: Squirrel Power by Ryan North and Erica Henderson (List Price $15.99)
If by chance your Geek Girl is not already reading The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, you need to buy it for her posthaste. It’s absolutely hilarious, while presenting one of the best female role models in all of comicdom: though Squirrel Girl is certainly capable of kicking butts when necessary, she goes out of her way to solve the underlying problem instead of resorting to violence as a quick fix. (She’s also studying computer science, making her a great example of female STEM major.) There might be a few jokes that go over your Geek Girl’s head, but there’s nothing really questionable or age-inappropriate (unless you’re really worried about her saying “oh my god” and making lots of nut-related puns. Seriously, just go buy it already. (You should probably order volume 2 Squirrel You Know It’s True while you’re at it.)
Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson (List Price $12.99)
There’s a lot to like in Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson. It’s the story of 12 year old Astrid, who falls in love with roller derby after her mother takes her to a bout for an “evening of cultural enlightenment.” Astrid signs up for derby camp and eventually gets to play in a bout herself, but a lot goes wrong along the way. It’s a great story that touches on a lot of problems kids have to deal with—growing apart from friends, being terrible at the thing you always wanted to do, and getting in trouble with your parents. (It’s worth noting that Astrid has a single mom, though the book doesn’t make a big deal of it.) While Roller Girl is aimed more directly at the tween/middle schooler audience, don’t count it out for your slightly younger Geek Girl. Just be aware that you might have to watch a lot of roller derby videos on YouTube—or even find a local bout to take her to—after she finishes reading it…
Song of the Sea, directed by Tomm Moore (2014) (List Price $34.98)
A beautifully animated film from Tomm Moore and Cartoon Saloon, who previously brought us 2009’s The Secret of Kells, Song of the Sea is the story of Saoirse, a six-year-old Irish girl who—unknown to her or her family—is really a Selkie, and who finds herself the only person who can stop a plot by Macha the Owl Witch to turn all of Ireland’s fairy folk to stone in order to take away their pain. The story is largely told through Saoirse’s older brother Ben, who first resents his sister before learning her true nature. But while Saoirse does not speak for most of the film (a result of her Selkie skin having been taken from her), she is the heart of the story, and there’s a good chance your Geek Girl will demand you make her a Selkie skin of her own after she sees the film (as mine did).
Coraline, directed by Henry Selick (2009) (List Price $19.98)
Adapted from the young adult novel by Neil Gaiman, Coraline is the story of a girl who finds a strange door in her new house that leads to a parallel world where everything seems just a little bit better, except for the fact that the Other Mother she finds there wants to replace her eyes with buttons. Coraline is a fantastically spooky “be careful what you wish for” tale with a strong central female character, voiced by Dakota Fanning. The story is brought to life through amazing stop-motion animation by Henry Selick and the team at Laika (who also brought us Paranorman and last year’s The BoxTrolls). An excellent choice for Geek Girls who like things a bit on the scary side.
GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine (List Price $29.99)
You might have heard of the original GoldieBlox Kickstarter from a couple of years ago, but, if not, the idea behind GoldieBlox was to create an engineering/construction toy designed and marketed to girls. Since then, they’ve branched out and now have more than a dozen sets. It’s an absolutely fantastic line of toys, and I (and my daughter) highly recommend them. While they are all fantastic, the GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine set is of particular interest to Geek Girls interested in animation. The set comes with everything you need to build your own zoetrope, along with three sets of pre-drawn cards with mini-movies. But the real fun comes from making their own movies—there’s an app with animation tutorials (narrated by Kari Byron of Mythbusters fame) and a toolbox so kids can draw and print their own creations. (There’s also a blank set of cards in the set for kids who want to draw by hand.) If your Geek Girl has expressed interest in animation or how movies are made, you can’t go wrong with GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine.
Check out GoldieBlox creator Debbie Sterling’s TED talk on why she saw the need for a girl-focused construction toy:
“Brainiac Attack” LEGO set (List Price $24.99)
Has your Geek Girl recently become entranced by the televised adventures of a certain Kryptonian? Does she also love LEGO? Then you absolutely cannot go wrong with the DC Super Heroes Brainiac Attack LEGO set, since it includes the exclusive Supergirl minifigure. Here, let’s get a better look at her:
In addition to Supergirl, the set also comes with the aforementioned Brainiac (who is presumably attacking), Superman, and the Martian Manhunter. So, four minifigures and a creepy skull/octopus spaceship for $25. Or, if you could care less about the rest of the stuff and just want Kara, you can buy her on eBay or Bricklink starting at about $10 plus shipping. One word of advice: if you are thinking of buying this, do it soon, as the set is about a year old and I could see a run on the remaining stock by fans trying to get ahold of those Supergirl minifigs before they’re all gone.
Other LEGO sets your Geek Girl might like: Utility Shuttle (City theme; features a female astronaut!), Aira’s Creative Workshop (Elves theme), Park Animals (Creator theme), and, of course, Doctor Who (LEGO Ideas), assuming you aren’t already buying that one for yourself (even then, you’ll probably want to get a second set for her so that both the 11th and 12th Doctors can have their own TARDISes).
Catan Junior (List Price $34.99)
Settlers of Catan has long been one of the most popular Euro-style board games, but did you know there is also a version designed for kids and families? Catan Junior is just as fun, but the rules have been simplified for the younger ones and the game is given a pirate theme to draw their interest (the robber has been replaced with a ghost pirate, for instance). If you are looking for a fun game to play with your Geek Girl over her holiday break, Catan Junior is an excellent choice.
Clothes and Accessories
Schrödinger’s Cat Earrings ($19.99, on sale for $11.99)
If your Geek Girl knows about Schrödinger’s cat and has pierced ears, she will most definitely need these earrings from ThinkGeek. I mean, that’s got to be the most adorable dead cat ever. Even if she doesn’t have pierced ears, you should probably buy these preemptively for when she gets them pierced. Think of it as an investment towards Christmas/Hanukkah/whatever 2020.
Gamora Charm Bead ($24.99, on sale for $9.99)
You know what would look totally badass on your Geek Girl’s Pandora-style charm bracelet? This Gamora charm bead from ThinkGeek:
Or just go wild and get all of the Guardians of the Galaxy (Star-Lord, Rocket, Groot, Baby Groot, and Drax). They also have a ton of other superhero and pop culture charms if your Geek Girl doesn’t care for the GotG.
My Little Pony: Doctor Hooves t-shirt ($20)
Does your Geek Girl like My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic AND Doctor Who? Then you might consider this Doctor Hooves shirt from We Love Fine, which perfectly mashes up both fandoms. I cannot get over the cuteness of the Cyperpony and Weeping (Pony) Angel, or the sonic screwdriver in Doctor Hooves’ mouth.
Supergirl t-shirt ($9.99)
Here’s a good, readily available, and inexpensive option for your little Supergirl fan: this Supergirl t-shirt from Target’s Love + Art collection, which has been a great source of superhero shirts for girls the past couple of years. And you could even wrap this around the Brainiac Attacks LEGO set, if you’re into that sort of bait-and-switch gift wrapping.
Other things your Geek Girl might like: this Marvel “I’m my own hero” t-shirt featuring Spider-Woman (along with a bunch of men), this Batgirl baseball shirt, this Jem and the Holograms t-shirt (technically for the movie, but we’ll just pretend it’s comics merch), or this Star Wars Yoda shirt.