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Recommendations > Books/Series with a female heroine suggestions

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message 1: by Teresa (new)

Teresa (confabulate-cookie) | 5 comments Does anyone have any recommendations of fantasy novels/series that have a woman as a main character or heroin? I am a big fan of these types of fantasy books. Here are the some that I have read so far:

Kushiel’s Legacy series & Naamah’s Kiss – Jacqueline Carey
The Southern Vampire Series – Charlian Harris ( I have also read some of her other series as well)
Anita Blake Vampire Hunter Series & Merry Gentry Series – Laurell K Hamilton
Rachel Morgan Series – Kim Harrison

There may be more I have read that I am just not thinking of at the moment but any suggestions would be great.

This Is Not The Michael You're Looking For A fantasy series about a woman as an addictive/deadly drug? Something starring a succubi, perhaps? meant heroine. That's a bit different.

message 3: by Sandy (new)

Sandy Here are the ones that I can think of.

Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs
Walker Papers by C.E. Murphy
The Negotiator series by C.E. Murphy
Jill Kismit series by Lilith Saintcrow
Dante Valentine series by Lilith Saintcrow
The OSI series by Jes Battis
Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews
The Weather Warden series by Rachel Caine

colleen the convivial curmudgeon (blackrose13) Of various styles, and various age groups, in no particular order:

Keeping It Real by Justina Robson (Book 1 of Quantum Gravity Series)
Tithe A Modern Faerie Tale, etal by Holly Black
Wicked Lovely, etal by Melissa Marr
Touch the Dark, etc by Karen Chance
Dhampir, etal by Barb Hendee and JC
The Witches Books of the Discworld series by Terry Pratchett
Monstrous Regiment by same
Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Fablehaven by Brandon Mull (this one's sort of a mixed bag because Kendra and her brother are both main protagonists, but Kendra seems to be the herione most often)
Wicked The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister by same
The Naming The First Book of Pellinor by Alison Croggon (I didn't particularly like this, but some others mights)
The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint
The Hunter's Moon, etal by O.R. Melling
Blood Engines, etc by T.A. Pratt (Dresden-ish type story)
New Amsterdam by Elizabeth Bear
Abarat by Clive Barker
Lirael Daughter of the Clayr by Garth Nix
and, for a touch of the graphic Courtney Crumrin & The Night Things, Volume 1 by Ted Naifeh
Nightmares & Fairy Tales Vol. 1 Once Upon a Time by Serena Valentino

message 6: by Teresa (new)

Teresa (confabulate-cookie) | 5 comments This Is Not The Michael You're Looking For wrote: "A fantasy series about a woman as an addictive/deadly drug? Something starring a succubi, perhaps? meant heroine. That's a bit different."

opps...forgot the e Heroine
Teresa wrote: "Does anyone have any recommendations of fantasy novels/series that have a woman as a main character or heroin? I am a big fan of these types of fantasy books. Here are the some that I have read so ..."

message 7: by Elise (new)

Elise (ghostgurl) | 653 comments Women of the Otherworld series by Kelley Armstrong.

message 8: by Rasmus (new)

Rasmus Rubæk (LordGothmog) The Black Magician trilogy by Trudi Canavan

message 9: by Sandy (new)

Sandy Dying Bites by D.D. Barant
Skinwalker by Faith Hunter
Diane Tregard series by Mercedes Lackey (OOP)
Moonheart by Charles de Lint
Greenmantle by Charles de Lint
Wicked Game by Jeri Smith-Ready
Enchantment Emporium by Tanya Huff
The Blood Books by Tanya Huff

message 10: by Chris (new)

Chris I'll second most of the other nods, and would add:

The Sun Sword series by Michelle West (women share time with men, but the women are strong in different ways)

The Cast in series by Michelle West

Elizabeth Ann Scarborough has several books with strong female characters, most in sequences of 2-4 books.

Barbara Hamblyhas several books with strong female leads.

Tiger and Del series by Jennifer Roberson. She also wrote two books focusing on Maid Marian.

You MUST read The Hero and the Crown as well as most of the works of Robin McKinley.

In addition to the Diane Tregard series, Mercedes Lackey wrote (and is still writing) a series call Valdemar. Several books in the series focus on heroines. In particular, By the Sword and the Oath books, such as . Oathbreakers.

You might also want to check out the Sword and Sorceress series of short story collection. Several authors that have stories published there have series as well. The series started as being edited by Marion Zimmer Bradley, who has strong female characters in some of her work.

message 11: by Janny (new)

Janny (JannyWurts) | 761 comments The Isavalta series by Sarah Zettel.
The Spirit Ring by Lois McMaster Bujold.
Tea With the Black Dragon by R.A. MacAvoy.

The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley.

I would second Barbara Hambly, and spotlight her novel, Those Who Hunt the Night as both an incredible read, and a superbly done heroine.

message 12: by Heather (new)

Heather | 35 comments I would have to say the following:

The Wit'ch series by James Clemens
God Stalk by P.C. Hodgell
Marked by P.C. Cast
Through Violet Eyes by Stephen Woodworth

The Quickening by Fiona McIntosh is also a fantastic trilogy but it rotates more around the main guy. Still the central female character is pretty awesome.

message 13: by [deleted user] (last edited Sep 16, 2009 08:47PM) (new)

You have many to choose from but i shall add another.

Australian author Ian Irvine has many strong female characters who take lead roles in his series 'The Three Worlds' of which the first book is A Shadow on the Glass. The series is now 11 large volumes and he intends to write more.

Well worth a read of the first book in the series.

message 14: by Rob (new)

Rob Harper Blaine, the Greywalker series by Kat Richardson. Four books so far: Greywalker, Poltergeist, Underground and Vanished.

JG (The Introverted Reader) Really, almost anything by Charles de Lint.

Graceling--YA but fantastic

Guy Gavriel Kay has a lot of great female characters. They might not be the exact center of attention, but they'll be one of a group of central characters.

Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next books are great if you like his brand of humor, which is hard to describe.

Juliet Marillier's Sevenwaters Trilogy has a great female heroine. I like her book, Wildwood Dancing too.

Patricia C. Wrede is another YA author, but I loved her Enchanted Forest Chronicles when I read them years ago.

message 16: by Libby (new)

Libby | 242 comments I've really enjoyed these -

The Mists of Avalon - a slew of great female leads. The rest of the series is ok but this one is amazing.

The Eyre Affair - I'll second the nod for Thursday Next - she's great. These books are lots of fun - wacky adventure / mystery

ALong the more dramatice line - I love Charles de Lint's Jilly Coppercorn -
The Onion Girl (Newford, Book 11)

Widdershins (Newford Book 16)
I read both of these books with no prior Newford knowledge and loved them

message 17: by Leslie Ann (new)

Leslie Ann (LeslieAnn) | 224 comments No one has yet mentioned the fantastic Crown of Stars series by Kate Elliott. The first volume is King's Dragon.

message 18: by Literary Ames {Against GR Censorship} (last edited Sep 19, 2009 10:29AM) (new)

Literary Ames {Against GR Censorship} (amyorames) I quite like:

Once Bitten Twice Shy (Jaz Parks) by Jennifer Rardin - about a female assasin teamed up with a male vampire assasin.

Howling at the Moon (Tales of an Urban Werewolf) by Karen MacInerney - about a female werewolf who's grown up hiding from all other werewolves.

Stray (Shifters)by Rachel Vincent - about a pride of werecats.

The Safe-Keeper's Secret (Safe-Keeper's) by Sharon Shinn - about a safe-keeper who keeps people's secrets, a truth-teller who tells the truth no matter what and a dream-maker who makes dreams come true but suffers personal tragedy.

The Reckoning (Darkest Powers)by Kelley Armstrong - YA and part of the same universe as the Women of the Otherworld. It's about a group of genetically enhanced supernatural (necromancer, werewolf, witch, sorcerer etc) children who are being kidnapped and manipulated.

Poison Study (Study series) by Maria V. Snyder - also YA, about a woman with magical abilities condemned to death for murdering someone and given a reprieve to become the food taster for the Commander who hates magic.

message 19: by Heather (new)

Heather | 35 comments The Decoy Princess by Dawn Cook As far as I know there's only this book and Princess at Sea but they're both wonderful and I love the main character.

Alex and the Ironic Gentleman by Adrienne Kress Only one book but I believe the author is thinking about more.

message 20: by Martha (new)

Martha (tilla) | 180 comments Oh, if you want funny - there's the whole Undead and . . . series by Mary Janice Davidson - Undead and Unwed, Undead and Unemployed, etc. They're a hoot!

message 22: by Marc (new)

Marc (AuthorGuy) | 374 comments My own books feature several strong women, although they don't become major players until the second book. The first book focuses on the hero and his own transformation, with many female supporting characters who become primary characters in the next book.

message 23: by Terence (new)

Terence (Spocksbro) | 89 comments I am dismayed - has no one read C.J. Cherryh's Morgaine novels? :-)

There's also her standalone, The Paladin with Taizu, which I enjoyed immensely. And, though not Fantasy, there's Signy Mallory and Ariane Emory from her Alliance/Union universe (especially Downbelow Station).

Also in the Fantasy genre is Jessica Salmondson's The Swordswoman, another favorite.

message 24: by Marc (new)

Marc (AuthorGuy) | 374 comments Lois McMaster Bujold's Paladin of Souls (there are two books in this series).

There are three books. The Curse of Chalion is the first, and by far the best book, followed by Paladin of Souls, which explored and developed one of my favorite characters from Chalion, and the third book, The Hallowed Hunt, which is in the same universe but in a different time period and none of the same characters. I hope for two more books, as she's got 5 gods in this world and only written about three of them.

message 25: by Teresa (new)

Teresa (confabulate-cookie) | 5 comments Wow! Thanks everyone for all the great recommendations. Keep them coming if you have them! Some of the suggestions I have read but forgot to mention, but most of these I have never heard so this has been a wealth of information.
Thanks again!!

message 26: by Michael (last edited Sep 22, 2009 05:30PM) (new)

message 27: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Dobbs | 121 comments There's an excellent series by Elizabeth Haydon, starting with Rhapsody Child of Blood.

message 28: by Laurel (new)

Laurel Two of my favorite heroines, are Thursday Next from the series by Jasper Fforde and Kim from The Fionavar Tapestry. Fionavar is an ensemble cast, but the character of Kim comes to the fore. She is integral, spans the worlds, wise, impetuous, funny, and deeply human. If I ever had to pick who I would be from a novel, I would hope that I was close to her.

message 29: by Kelly (new)

Kelly Flanagan | 55 comments The Black Jewels Trilogy: Daughter of the Blood, Heir to the Shadows, Queen of the Darkness (The Black Jewels, #1-3)

message 30: by Shanon (new)

Shanon (Boban) One of my favorite series is the Weather Warden series by Rachel Caine. The first book is Ill Wind. It is one of the most addictive and unpredictable series I've read.

message 31: by Robin (last edited Oct 14, 2009 11:21PM) (new)

Robin (RobinSullivan) | 629 comments I'll second Chris's recommendation for the Griffin's Daughters book. The first two are very good and the third one (I have an ARC) is fantastic! A great finish to a good series. The main character Jelena is a great female lead. I think Library Journal summed it up for me:

"Her strong male and female characters and their abiding feelings of love and honor bring a sense of true heroism to their struggles against their obstacles."

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Literary Ames {Against GR Censorship} (amyorames) Kelly wrote: "The Black Jewels Trilogy: Daughter of the Blood, Heir to the Shadows, Queen of the Darkness (The Black Jewels, #1-3)

I second this. Brilliant trilogy.

message 33: by Shelley (new)

Shelley I also love fantasy books with strong female lead, and was browsing the net for some new ones when i stumbled upon this, so i'll share my favourites.

The Obernewtyn Chronicles by Isobelle Carmody
The Witches of Eileanan by Kate Forsyth
Rhiannons Ride by Kate Forsyth
Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead
Anything by Tamora Pierce (is YA but fantastic all the same)

message 34: by Amanda (new)

Amanda You should check out the Green Rider series by Kristin Britain. I really enjoyed them!

message 35: by Kristen (new)

Kristen (krisnd08) | 13 comments I'll second the Juliet Marillier suggestion, and would like to add pretty much anything by Sharon Shinn. She's what really got me into reading fantasy. I started with Mystic and Rider (the first novel in the Thirteenth House series, all of which are great), then moved on to Archangel (which is the first of the Samaria novels, also great).

message 36: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (Tail-KinkertoEnnien) Winter of Fire

I really enjoyed this book as an adolescent. The lead is a female who challenges all the male-dominated and other oppressive traditions within her society.

message 37: by Lady (new)

Lady (BestNewFantasySeries) | 9 comments Persephane, in my own The Persephane Pendrake Chronicles is a 13 year old girl, just coming of age and growing into her powers. She will mature with the series, a planned nine books (3 trilogies).

I loved Kate Mosse's books Labyrinth and Sepulchre. Very strong female protagonists in both.


message 38: by James (new)

James (nfwolfboy) | 6 comments Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare
Mercy Thompson series by Patrica Briggs
Maximum Ride series by James Patterson
The Kiesha'ra series by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes

message 39: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Also check out the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews. Really strong heroine. Loved this series and I am eagerly anticipating the 5th installment!!

message 40: by Brittany (new)

Brittany (bnleake) I would recommend reading some Tamora Pierce. She's a YA author, but i love her books.

message 41: by Carmen (last edited Sep 30, 2010 11:26AM) (new)

Carmen | 50 comments Hi Teresa,

I just saw your post.

Two Moon Princess has a female protagonist.

Starting tomorrow, you can check the discussion of Two Moon Princess here at The Fantasy Book Club.

message 43: by Tiphaine (last edited Oct 09, 2010 01:30AM) (new)

Tiphaine | 3 comments You should have a look at the "Urban Fantasy" group, you'll find plenty of good books with a strong female heroine. I'm sure you would enjoy this group!

message 44: by Charles (new)

Charles (charliewhip) | 235 comments Teresa wrote: "Does anyone have any recommendations of fantasy novels/series that have a woman as a main character or heroin? I am a big fan of these types of fantasy books. Here are the some that I have read so ..."

The Morgaine Saga (3 vols) by C.J. Cherryh

Mike (the Paladin) (thepaladin) | 741 comments Hi, a couple of my favorite series are :
The Deed of Paksenarrion, this is the omnibus edition of the trilogy made up of:
Sheepfarmer's Daughter, Divided Allegiance, and Oath of Gold.

I also like Green Rider, followed by First Rider's Call and The High King's Tomb.

There are others of course these are two of my favorites that jumped to mind.

message 46: by Christine (new)

Christine Chapman I didn't think anyone mentioned:

The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
Catching Fire & The Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

Dark Divine by Bree Despain

His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman

message 47: by Julie (new)

Julie Man, I have alot of books to add to my "to be read" file after this post. Others have mentioned but one of my favorite books is The Mists of Avalon LOVED this book and have read it many times. It just gets better and better with every read. I would also recommend The Firebrand by Marion Zimmer Bradley. Someone mentioned the Crown of Stars series by Kate Elliott which was a great series, a VERY long series as well. I would recommend on of her earlier series The Novels of Jaran specifically the first one Jaran. I just really liked those books. Haven't read them in a while though.

message 48: by Emma (new)

Emma I second *third?* The Mists of Avalon, it's a great choice and has a strong female vibe.
I believe no one has mentioned Daughter of the Forest, which is absolutely amazing.

message 49: by Lyle Kimo (new)

Lyle Kimo Valdez (eskablong) Succubus Blues (Georgina Kincaid series) by Richelle Mead. And I think Ill Wind (Weather Warden series) by Rachel Caine has a female protagonist.

message 50: by Robin (new)

Robin (RobinSullivan) | 629 comments I do most of my book buying online but was in the bookstore for several hours the other night and was amazed by the number of women on the cover's in the fantasy section - they all looked the same: thin, wearing a mid-drift and some weapon in hand. It seems like there is a big trend in fantasy that is actually thinly veiled romanace or this true? Or am I under a misconception?

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Books mentioned in this topic

Sabriel (other topics)
Kitty and the Midnight Hour (other topics)
The Deed of Paksenarrion (other topics)
Griffin's Daughter (other topics)
The Final Empire (other topics)

Authors mentioned in this topic

Garth Nix (other topics)
Carrie Vaughn (other topics)
Leslie Ann Moore (other topics)
Elizabeth Moon (other topics)
Brandon Sanderson (other topics)