There may be a shortage of fluorescent pink paint, but that hasn’t stopped people from finding other creative ways to “Barbiefy” their bathrooms, bedrooms, and kitchens. And as far as bookworms are concerned, you really only need one thing to build and organize a bookcase fit for Barbie Dreamland: books with pink covers, of course!
As evident in books, Barbie can be whoever she wants to be. She can be a doctor or teacher, a single mom who is also a secret spy, a writer, or a biochemist. In other words, books give us the opportunity to read about all types of Barbies! Barbies who are like us, or who come from different backgrounds, or who inspire us to be better versions of ourselves. Much like Margot Robbie’s character in the movie Barbie, protagonists (and often even the antagonists) go on a journey of self-healing and discovery within a story. It’s those journeys that challenge us to look at the world through a different lens and reflect inward.
So, whether you’re looking to gain a fresh perspective or are just in need of a little pink on your bookshelf, here are 10 novels with Barbie pink covers to page through.
1. American Mermaid by Julia Langbein
A novel within a novel, American Mermaid follows broke-English-teacher-turned-best-selling-author Penelope Schleeman as she navigates the disturbing (and sexist) trenches of Hollywood in the pursuit of her — and every other feminist, no-bra-wearing woman’s — own success. Penelope’s book was a hit among the masses for a reason. When the sharks on Sunset Boulevard begin to reap the consequences of their “creative changes,” the movie’s future, not to mention Penelope’s career, gets thrust into the limelight.
2. Lady Secrets by Keltie Knight, Jac Vanek, and Becca Tobin
A coffee table book of sorts, Lady Secrets would be the it book of Barbie Dreamland. Inside its pages, you’ll find raw, ridiculous, and real AF confessions and conversations about what it’s like to be a woman in today’s world. Women of the world are baring their souls, and you’ll find yourself laughing and nodding along in unison.
3. Flawless by Elsie Silver
If two-people-one-bed is your romance trope of choice, add Elsie Silver’s Flawless to your TBR pile ASAP. Professional bull rider Rhett Eaton needs to clean up his act, according to his agent at least. The one benefit to being assigned a full-time supervisor for the summer? She’s funny, attractive, and single. The downside? Her father is Rhett’s agent, and she’s totally off-limits. But rules are meant to be broken, right?
4. The Blonde Identity by Ally Carter
This Barbie is a confused woman with amnesia who learns that her twin sister is a rogue spy. Unbeknownst to Zoe, her sister has been two-timing a criminal organization and an intelligence service for quite some time. And now, with Alex nowhere to be found, Zoe is their primary target. Thanks a lot, sis! The Blonde Identity is as hilarious and action-packed as it sounds — and Ken comes along for the ride, too.
5. Happy Place by Emily Henry
Despite calling it quits five months prior, exes Harriet and Wyn agree to put aside their differences and hide their fractured relationship for the sake of their friend group’s annual Maine getaway. For seven days, they’ll share one bed, go back to being goo-goo about each other, and put on a convincing charade that all is fine. How hard can it be?
6. The Book Proposal by KJ Micciche
A drunk email to her college crush turns out to be the solution to Gracie’s severe case of writer’s block. The last thing Gracie expected was a reply from Colin Yarmouth, the campus hottie who is now a successful (and still hot) attorney, let alone a response doused in charm and — dare she say? — flirty banter. An in-person rendezvous breaks Gracie’s creative dry spell, but when their real-life connection begins to seep into her fictional characters’ lives, it becomes harder and harder for Gracie to decipher what’s real and what’s her imagination.
7. Pink Lemonade Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke
This Barbie can solve crimes and bake a mean pink lemonade cake. The annual Tri-County Summer Solstice Celebration comes to an abrupt, morbid halt when someone comes across a deceased body belonging to a once-famous professional MLB player. The protagonist’s mother soon becomes the prime suspect, leaving the townspeople unsettled. If Hannah’s mother is capable of killing, what is Hannah capable of putting in her scrumptious desserts?
8. The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas
Desperate and dreading her nosey family’s solemn stares and inquiries about her nonexistent dating life, Catalina hatches a plan to bring her “American boyfriend” as her date to her sister’s wedding. With her family off her back, now Catalina can focus on finding a guy to pose as her plus one. Enter: Aaron. He’s tall, handsome, and her number one enemy at work, but she would be foolish to turn down his offer of playing her make-believe boyfriend for the weekend. A weekend getaway filled with love and a healthy dose of competition threatens to complicate their professional relationship back in New York.
9. Greta & Valdin by Rebecca K. Reilly
Dubbed the perfect book for fans of Schitt’s Creek (Alexis would be Barbie’s BFF, and you know it), Greta & Valdin is a queer literary novel about a multiracial sibling duo whose lives are anything but dull and easygoing. Prepare for lust and heartbreak, and lots of family drama and self-imploding chaos.
10. The True Love Experiment by Christina Lauren
A romantic at heart, writer Felicity “Fizzy” Chen has never been head over heels in love. When she crosses paths with a filmmaker named Connor, it’s as if her prayers have been answered. Connor is looking to cast the lead for his new reality dating show, and who better to fall in love on live TV than a popular romance author? It’s a win-win for everybody until Fizzy’s romantic connection takes an off-screen turn.
11. My Magnolia Summer by Victoria Benton Frank
If you were a fan of Southern lit icon Dorothea Benton Frank (aka “Dottie”), slide this sunset-pink gem to the top of your TBR pile — it’s the debut novel from Dottie’s daughter, Victoria Benton Frank. You’ll be transported to the dreamy coastal town of Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina, the hometown of Maggie, who’s currently working in the fast-paced foodie world of New York City. When her beloved Gran falls ill, Maggie returns to complex family dynamics and — could it be? — some spicy relationship drama, too.