Urban Fantasy discussion

BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS > Looking for Recommendations: Original Heroines

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message 1: by Betelgeuze (new)

Betelgeuze | 114 comments The UF genre appears to be saturated with white heterosexual women in their twenties. They are also almost always culturally North-American, and if religion is mentioned they're christian.

Does anyone know of books in which the heroine differs in at least one way from the above description?

The only series i have read in which the main characters are more diverse is the Sisters of the moon series, which has a bi-sexual character and the sister's (fictional) culture is different.

message 2: by new_user (last edited Feb 25, 2011 11:46AM) (new)

new_user Good to see someone else notices and is searching. :)

Offhand, Elizabeth Phoenix from the Phoenix Chronicles, (Any Given Doomsday) comes from what is an indeterminate heritage initially, but you eventually learn the truth. Just a warning, that series is discontinued.

Margrit Knight, lead of the Negotiator series (Heart Of Stone), considers herself black.

Janet Begay, heroine of the Stormwalker series, is Native American.

Evangeline Hollis from the Marked series (Eve of Darkness) is first generation Japanese-American.

I think Mercedes Thompson may also be Native American.

You might also look at Marjorie M. Liu or Nalini Singh, who tend to write multicultural characters.

message 3: by Galla (new)

Galla | 32 comments In The Iron Duke, the heroine is multiracial. Her race figures heavily in the book, because her mother was raped by a member of the Horde, which occupied England for centuries. Meljean Brook does a good job with it (and the rest of the book, for that matter!).

message 4: by Lisa O. (new)

Lisa O. | 48 comments Jane Yellowrock from the Skinwalker series is Native American. A really good series too.

How sad is it that that's the only one I can think of right now.

message 5: by Julia (last edited Feb 25, 2011 03:49PM) (new)

Julia | 615 comments new_user wrote:

I think Mercedes Thompson may also be Native American.

She is, but like Janet Begay she was not raised Indian. Janet has a grandmother on the reserve, but I think we're going to meet Mercy's Indian family in the book that'll be out 3/1 or so... . River Marked (Mercedes Thompson, #6) by Patricia Briggs

Please check out Octavia E. Butler. Her heroines, like her, are black. But she didn't write urban fantasy. Her books are often categorized as science fiction, but that's not always the case.
Check out Kindred by Octavia E. Butler , Wild Seed by Octavia E. Butler , Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler , Parable of the Talents by Octavia E. Butler . Fledgling by Octavia E. Butler , her most recent book, is about vampires that are very different.

Tanarive Dueis usually shelved in horror, but she is also an author to check out.

Also check out Nnedi Okorafor .

message 6: by new_user (new)

new_user Oh, and I just remembered Minion, first book in the Vampire Huntress series.

She is, but like Janet Begay she was not raised Indian. Janet has a grandmother on the reserve, but I think we're going to meet Mercy's Indian family in the book that'll be out 3/1 or so...

Yeah, Janet's heritage figures a little more prominently than Mercy's, I think -I think it's basically a line in Moon Called- but I've only read the first two books in the Mercedes Thompson series.

message 7: by Dawn (new)

Dawn (dawnv) | 367 comments Here are a few more:

Jane Lindskoldwrote Thirteen Orphans (Breaking the Wall, #1) by Jane Lindskold which are Asian influenced (Chinese I think but not sure)

Eileen Rendahl Don't Kill The Messenger (Messenger, #1) by Eileen Rendahl is also Asian influenced.

Mario Acevedo The Nymphos of Rocky Flats (Felix Gomez, #1) by Mario Acevedo (sorry this one is a guy) and Marta Acostawrote The Bride of Casa Dracula (Casa Dracula, #3) by Marta Acosta both have Hispanic vampires.

Charles de Lint has a ton of Native American characters.

Then there is Laura Anne Gilman who wroteHard MagicI forgot what she was.

I recall someone on their blog listing a bunch of these if I find it I will let you know.

message 8: by Julia (last edited Feb 26, 2011 03:44PM) (new)

Julia | 615 comments Betelgueze in her OP said: and if religion is mentioned they're christian.

In the final story in Zombies vs. Unicorns the POV character is Zorastrian. That made me sit up! I don't believe I've ever read a character with that religion.

And the collection's pretty delightful, too.

Diane ~Firefly~ | 35 comments Lily Yu from the World of the Lupi series by Eileen Wilks is Chinese-American. First book is Tempting Danger

message 10: by new_user (new)

new_user Well, after reading the third Mercy book, I take back what I said about her, LOL!

message 11: by Julia (new)

Julia | 615 comments NU, the sixth book River Marked that just came out 3/1/11 deals extensively with this...

It's not fiction, but in the BBCA series "Being Human" George is Jewish. (Josh could be in North American production, of the series of the same name, but it hasn't come up yet if he is.)

And Jay is Chinese- American in The Painted Boy. Jay's friends, and foes for that matter, are Mexican- American and Mexican.

message 12: by K (new)

K | 20 comments I think that at least one of main characters in both The First Days and Black Blade Blues have non heterosexual orientations.

oh and Silver Phoenix: Beyond the Kingdom of Xia is asian inspired

message 13: by new_user (new)

new_user Thanks, Julia. I'll look forward to River Marked. :)

Also, not urban, but the heroine of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is a PoC, and the book also deals with some themes of colonialism, cultural imperialism, etc.

message 14: by Maggie (new)

Maggie (ceodraiocht) | 17 comments I enjoyed these - all non-Christian heroines, urban fantasy.

Urban Shaman Joanna is half Native American, half Irish. Brought up Native American and learns to use her animal guide in early books of series. C.E. Murphy mentioned above for her Negotiator Series.

Dead Witch Walking Rachel Morgan is a witch. Predominantly goes out with men but (spoiler) she and her roomate Ivy are incredibly attracted to one another (2 of later books repeat episodes).

Bitten first book of Women of the Otherworld heroine is blond american. Later books in the series (generally the ones with magic in the title) highlight the witch Paige as heroine.

Marjorie Lui already mentioned. Also Charles de Lint already mentioned. He's prolific in urban fantasy and I don't think any of his heroines are Christian (could be mistaken ...

message 15: by Maggie (new)

Maggie (ceodraiocht) | 17 comments Should have added for your "at least one way from the above" regarding Christian - there is a list for wiccan/pagan:

I've actually not read or heard of most of the list and the ones I mention above aren't yet there.

Also, Alex Craft Grave Witch is an additional fantasy witch heroine.

message 16: by mlady_rebecca (new)

mlady_rebecca Beyond those already mentioned, Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake is half Mexican.

message 17: by AlbertaJenn (new)

AlbertaJenn Artist Arthur writes a YA UF series about characters that are visible minorites. I know that the main character in Manifest (Mystyx, #1) by Artist Arthur is black, but I don't know about the heritage of the other characters.
Mystify (Mystyx, #2) by Artist Arthur is the sequel.

message 18: by Betelgeuze (new)

Betelgeuze | 114 comments Thanks for the recommendations. Some of the books i've read, others i will definitely check out.

message 19: by Omi (last edited Jun 03, 2012 08:54AM) (new)

Omi | 9 comments It is a tough one, I fit into that category (bar the American part) but am a bit sick of reading about it. I will have to take a look at some of the recommendations here. The only things I have read that stand out in the slightest way are these;

The shifter series by Rachel Vincent does not mention the race of the protagonist but she comes across as maybe Latino to me. Maybe it is just the way I read it but she did not seem white. The love interest is Mexican too which was a nice change.

The Hollows series by Kim Harrison has a bit of a bi-sexual undertone to it but it really is only subtle. The room-mate/partner is mixed race and bi-sexual though.

The white trash zombie series is about a white heterosexual woman however there is the big change of class so it does offer a refreshing change to the standard protagonist in one way.

I am sorry I could not give better recommendations though.

message 20: by Pogue (new)

Pogue (nulaanne) Silver Moon is about a woman who later in life (menopausal) comes out of the closet. Lunatic Fringe while the girl is just in college she is LGTB. Witch Wolf is LGTB.

message 21: by Charles (new)

Charles Verhey (charlesverhey) | 11 comments You may also want to check out Firecracker. Aideen Cassidy is a red-headed Scottish American who has low self esteem, a somewhat lanky physique, zero grace, is a bit of a dork, and is an emotional time bomb who can go from laughing to crying in the blink of an eye (which earns her the nickname "Firecracker").

It's what every secret agency needs -- an over-emotional psychic fire starter.

message 22: by Brandy (last edited Jun 05, 2012 01:37AM) (new)

Brandy | 19 comments Kendra wrote: "I think that at least one of main characters in both The First Days and Black Blade Blues have non heterosexual orientations.

I'm reading Black Blade Blues. Sarah Beauhall (main character) has a girlfriend and Loup Garron in Santa Olivia's book too :)

message 23: by ☀Rachael☀ (new)

☀Rachael☀ (jimbunni) Maria Lima's Matters of the blood series I've only read the first one and they haven't revealed who or what Kiera is yet!

message 24: by Mark (new)

Mark (Mark_N) | 14 comments Check out Karen Marie Moning's FEVER series, thee Heroine Mackayla Lane travels to Dublin Ireland after her sister is killed there, she find that her roots are from there. Great series.

message 25: by Therese (new)

Therese (jellymonstergirl) Zoo City was the first book that I thought of, but I also agree with everyone who recommended Charles de Lint. And maybe have a look at Palimpsest and Mockingbird too.

message 26: by carol. (new)

carol. As a fair warning, I wouldn't consider the Fever series to have an original heroine at all. She's quite standard for the UF field, at least in the first book.

message 27: by Julia (new)

Julia | 615 comments I haven't read it yet, but I like some of the author's other series, in Santa Olivia the main character is a lesbian, I think. Heads up: the book may or may not be UF.

message 28: by Robert (new)

Robert Taylor | 2 comments Cirocco Jones of the Titan trilogy by John Varley is of Arabic extraction, I think, and is bisexual

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