Kick Butt Women of Fantasy LiteratureFemale characters rock. This, of course, is a no-brainer. Women have always rocked, and most readers love a great female protagonist. These days, we have a lot to choose from. I recently wrote a post on the role of the modern female protagonist as depicted in film and television, you can read about it at Girls Gun Wild. But in celebration of our Kick Butt blog hop, I thought I would compose my top ten list of Kick Butt female characters from fantasy novels. Below you'll read about my favorites, and I have asked you to share some of yours. I can't wait to hear those you've enjoyed. On my list are YA characters, cross-over YA/New Adult, and some are classic characters. I hope the list gives you a few new titles to add to your to-read list. Here are some of my favorites:
Kick Butt Character Giveaway: Featuring Layla Petrovich
Check out the Kick Butt Giveaway Pictured Below
(details on how to win at end of post)
Novel: "The Harvesting"
Author: Melanie Karsak
Bio: Layla Petrovich, ancient weapons expert, is called home to Hamletville just before a pandemic turns the world into the undead. It soon falls on Layla to save the people of her home town. But Layla soon finds out we were never really alone. The death of humanity reveals other creatures--some on our side, some who wish to end mankind--living in our world. Standing between them and us is Layla.
Now . . . on to the Kick Butt Ladies of Fantasy Literature!
The Top 10 List
10. Kick Butt Character: GuenevereBook Title: Guenevere, Queen of the Summer Country
Author: Rosalind Miles
9. Kick Butt Characters: Niobe and OrbSeries Title: Incarnations of Immortality Series
Author: Piers Anthony
I am including Piers Anthony's series on the list because it is the first fantasy series I ever read. I remember being entralled by the idea of Death, Time, Fate, Earth conceived as human incarnates. The first book in this series, which focused on Death, was really fantastic. I particuarly loved Niobe, who was fate, and Orb, depicted above, as Mother Earth. Both of these ladies kicked butt because they wielded power and fought the the incarnate of Evil. While my older, wiser self does detect some sexist themes in the work (why do all of Anthony's female characters have jiggly breasts?), this is a great "starter" series for anyone who wants to read a fantasy classic.
8. Kick Butt Characters: Susan and LucySeries Title: The Chronicles of Narnia Series
Author: C.S. Lewis
No list of kick butt female characters of fantasy can be complete without the ladies of Narnia. The siblings in this tale use wit, strength, and purity of heart to defeat an evil queen and save the land from the clutches of evil and Turkish delight. Kick butt indeed!
7. Kick Butt Character: SorchaSeries: The Sevenwaters Series
Author: Juliet Marillier
6. Kick Butt Character: Mina HarkerWorks: Dracula and The League of Extrodinary Gentleman
Authors: Bram Stoker and Allan Moore & Kevin O'Neill
Mina is fantastic. Her role in Dracula depicts her as an educated and independant woman in a time period where women were usually neither educated nor independant. This, of course, makes her kick butt. In her reprisal in the League of Extrodinary Gentleman, she has turned vampire and uses her taste for blood as a weapon to aid Allen Quartermain in a quest to save the world.
5. Kick Butt Character: Alexia TarabottiNovel: The Parasol Protectorate Series
Author: Gail Carriger
In addition to League of Extrodinary Gentlman, let me make one other Steampunk nod. I think you will really enjoy Gail Carriger's character Alexia. She may be kick butt, but she doesn't have a soul. This makes her pretty amazing at fighting vampires and werewolves, all while toting a parasol and having good manners. If you like your Steampunk prim and elegant with a side of kick butt, check out this series!
4. Kick Butt Character: Katniss EverdeenNovel: The Hunger Games
Author: Suzanne Collins
You just can't include a list of kick butt females without Katniss. Our dystopian heroine WINS the freaking Hunger Games because she can shoot a bow and uses her wit to survive. If we describe kick butt as beauty and brains, Katniss has plenty of both!
3. Kick Butt Character: MorgaineNovel: The Mists of Avalon
Author: Marion Zimmer Bradley
The Mists of Avalon is a coming of ace story all young women should read. Like Miles' work, it tells the King Arthur story from the perspective of many of the women in the tale. The most powerful storyline, however, comes from Morgaine. Morgaine, better known as the evil sorceress Morgan le fey, takes us on her journey to become a Priestess of Avalon. While she has her faults, her exploration into ancient matriarchial religion and her mastery over the ancient art is admireable. She is, hands down, one of my favorite characters of all time.
2. Kick Butt Character: ArwenSeries: The Lord of the Rings
Author: JRR Tolkien
There is something special about Arwen. Sure, she is an elf. Sure, she can do magic. The character of Arwen, and Eowyn for that matter, are unique. In The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien wrote female characters that were wise, loving, and powerful. In the midst of the 1950s where the women were, for the most part, relegated to housework, Tolkien envisioned a world where women could control the elements, fight in battles, and still be feminine. Arwen is one of the best kick butt females of all time.
1. Kick Butt Character: HermioneSeries: The Harry Potter Series
Author: JK Rowling
Is it an exaggeration to suggest that JK Rowling is the Shakespeare of our day? I suspect that one day the Harry Potter series will be considered canon literature. Until then, we can all bask in the glow that was Potter. In my opinion, Hermione is the most kick butt female character in all of fantasy literature. She is brave, smart, strong, wise, compassionate, and loyal. She represents ever quality we value in our society. She did't fall for the hero, she helped him--WITH HER BRAIN. She is an admirable heroine for any young woman and most definitly a kick butt character!
Now, Giveaway Time!
What the Prize-Pack Includes:
1 - Undead T-Shirt, Book Cover on Front, Back Shown
1 - Autographed copy of "The Harvesting". Check out my tab on the novel for more details here: The Harvesting Series
1 - "The Harvesting" Bumper Sticker
10 - Signed "The Harvesting" postcards
How to Win?
1) Follow this blog
2) Post a comment below telling us about your favorite Kick Butt female protagonist!
Domestic and International Entries Permissible!
The Kick Butt Characters Blog Hop runs from March 23rd to 28th. I will randomly draw a winner at the end of the hop and email you with the details. Thanks to Good Choice Reading and I'm a Reader, Not a Writer for organizing the blog hop. Please check out the link list to the right for other great giveaways!