My Seven Favorite Bookish Heroines


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly list-making meme where we get to talk about my favourite thing: books! Today’s theme is “Top Ten Favorite Heroines From Books”. Or, you know, seven. Because seven is a good number.

Menolly from The Harper Hall trilogy by Anne McCaffrey. The thing I like about Menolly is that her “superpower” isn’t having a dragon or being able to shoot lasers from her eyes (for the record, no one can do that in the Dragonriders series). It’s that she is able to write popular, catchy songs in a culture where music is the vehicle for passing on traditions. She’s basically a band geek.

The Hunger GamesKatniss from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. It’s nice to see a heroine who doesn’t conform to all the stereotypes about likeability, but is largely likeable nonetheless. Although Katniss’s treatment of Peeta in the beginning isn’t exactly admirable, it is pragmatic for both of them, and there’s no doubt she grows to care for him.

Gaby from The Rephaim series by Paula Weston. Gaby manages to combine being sassy and fun with being broken, wracked with nightmares over the death of her beloved twin. She’s also struggling with a serious case of amnesia, all of which makes for a very complex character.

Tana from The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black. Tana is another wonderfully complex character. She manages to be reckless and courageous, capable and caring, all at the same time. If I had to sum her up in one word, it’d be “conflicted”. She’s scarred, literally and psychologically, by events in her past.

Cinder from The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. My favourite thing about Cinder is that she is a cyborg and a brilliant mechanic, and she manages to maintain her sense of self-worth despite her awful circumstances. I’m sure there are other female cyborg mechanics out there, but none that I’ve read about! I just loved it because it’s so far from the usual.

Yukiko from The Lotus War trilogy by Jay Kristoff. Yukiko is mature before her time; her father’s lotus addiction and her mother’s absence mean she’s had to grow up and be the responsible one in the family. When the mad emperor sets her father a seemingly impossible quest to capture a thunder tiger, she’s dragged along with him because, well, who else is going to do it?

And last but not least…

HermioneHermione from the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. Because duh. Hermione is “bookish” in all senses of the word. It’s so awesome to see a series where the studious, intelligent, empathetic female character is a role model for teenage girls and grownups alike. I wish these books had been around when I was a 12 year old.

Who are your bookish heroines?

13 Comments on “My Seven Favorite Bookish Heroines”

  1. lorellepage says:

    Out of all of those, Cinder would be my pick 🙂 I really like Holly Black’s books, but I haven’t read that one. But now I will be adding this one to my tbr pile. If I can reach the top of it…Do you have any adult urban fantasy favs? Mine would be Kate Daniels and although it’s more PNR, I’d say Charley Davidson.

    • I’ve been reading The Hollows books by Kim Harrison, and I quite like her heroine, Rachel Morgan. She’s possibly too reckles for my tastes, though; I just finished the second book in the series and at one point I wanted to grab her by the hair and bang her head into the wall. Still, I like her strength of will.

      I also liked Daisy Johanssen from Dark Currents by Jacqueline Carey, although it’s been a while since I read it. I’ve got the sequel sitting on my teetering TBR pile, along with everything else! 🙂

    • PS Paula Weston’s Rephaim series is also adult urban fantasy.

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Menolly, and her world, sounds interesting. I like why you chose her. Here’s mine

  3. Cait says:

    CINDER AND YES YES KATNISS AND TANA! These are all so epic. I blame Katniss for getting me started in YA. 😉 She was probably my first favourite heroine. Tana is amazing, but afjdklafsd Gavriel. *ahem* And Cinder? Marissa Meyer just writes the most fabulous characters and they’re all so incredibly different and complex. I relate to Cress the most, but Cinder and Scarlet are AMAZING. I cannot wait for Winter! Even if she’s crazy! I’m still excited! *flails*
    Here’s my TTT!

  4. I have Cinder and Hermione on my list as well! I feel that especially Hermione was a character I looked up to ever since I was little.

    Great list!

  5. Great list 🙂 I’ve seen a few of these characters today, need to up the books on my TBR.
    Cora @ Tea Party Princess

  6. ashleighrosie says:

    Oh man, there are so many choices on this list 😀 I love it!
    The Lotus War and the Rephraim series both look super interesting. What’s your favourite things about them? I’m trying to decide whether or not to check them out and read them 🙂

    My TTT (

    • The Lotus War series is set in the most awesome setting – it’s steampunk, but inspired by feudal Japan rather than Europe, which makes for a nice change. Kristoff’s writing style is lush; lots of evocative turns of phrase.

      As for the Rephaim, there’s a mystery to solve (what Gaby and her twin did to result in her losing their memory). This one is urban fantasy with angels, and both sides are determined to extract those memories from her. I like the shades of grey in it – the “good guys” are sometimes almost as bad as the bad guys. There’s also some sizzling romantic tension in this one. 🙂

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