Joining in the folks over at The Broke and the Bookish for Top Ten Tuesday – Kick-ass Heroine edition. These are in no particular order, and definitely heavy on Mercedes Lackey characters. What can I say, Misty writes a lot of bad ass heroines!
1. Elspeth (Mercedes Lackey’s Mage Winds/Mage Storms) – Princess Elspeth starts out as a total brat when she’s first introduced, but by the time she becomes a teenager, she’s outgrown that, and becomes a strong-willed young woman with a strong sense of responsibility for her country and her people.
2. Kerowyn (Mercedes Lackey’s By the Sword and others) – Kerowyn is introduced after most of her family is brutally slaughtered and her brother’s bride-to-be is kidnapped. With her father dead and her brother wounded, Kerowyn decides it’s her responsibility to rescue her soon-to-be sister-in-law. With the aid of her grandmother Kethry and a magical sword called Need, she kicks ass big time. Which brings me to…
3. Tarma and Kethry (Mercedes Lackey’s Vows and Honor series) – A Shin’a’in and a sorceress, sword-sworn to each other, running about the countryside in a mercenary company and on their own – I’ve always loved Tarma and Kethry, particularly Kethry – enough that I used “Kethry” or “Kethryveris” as an online handle for a long time.
4. Diana Bishop (Deborah Harkness’ All Souls trilogy) – Diana is one tough chick – though she starts out as your typical reluctant hero. She discovers that she’s a witch, descended from Bridget Bishop, the first woman executed for witchcraft in the Salem Witch Trials. Then she falls in love with a Vampire, which is highly forbidden, not to mention all the witches, daemons, and vampires that want to kill her because of a mysterious manuscript known as Ashmole 782. She finds out that she’s stronger – and more powerful – than she thought possible.
5. Joanna Archer (Vicki Pettersson’s Zodiac series) – I’ve only read the first one, but just from that I know that Joanna is one tough chick. She’s superhuman – and supernatural – and gets sucked into a world of Light vs. Shadow. She loses her family, joins the Zodiac Troop as the sign of the Archer, where hardly anyone trusts her, but manages to ferret out the traitor in their midst.
6.Eve Dallas (JD Robb’s in Death series) – Eve overcomes a very traumatic childhood of being beaten and raped by her father, killing him when she was 6, and growing up in foster care, to become a Lieutenant Detective in the NYPD. She’s targeted by several psycho killers, not to mention has to go back to Dallas, TX and face her past which has haunted her all her life. It doesn’t get much tougher than Eve.
7. Yelena Zaltana (Maria V. Snyder’s Study series/Glass series) – Yelena is another character that overcomes torture and abuse and goes on to do amazing things. Kidnapped when she was very young and taken to Ixia, she’s imprisoned for murdering her torturer, though she doesn’t tell them that’s why she killed him. Eventually her magic flares, and one of the master magicians from the Southern kingdoms tries to kill her – though she eventually becomes Yelena’s mentor and takes her back home to her family. Everyone in the south believes Yelena is an Ixian spy, and nobody trusts her, but Yelena unfailingly tries to do what she believes is right.
8. Merit (Chloe Neill’s Chicagoland Vampires series) – What can I say? I LOVE Merit. She’s sassy, strong, and not scared of very much. Turned to a vampire without her consent, hunted by the Master Vampire of another house, madly in love with her own Master, trying to save the Supernatural population of Chicago from certain destruction by the Greenwich Presidium – Merit’s got everything a kick-ass heroine needs. Up to and including leather pants and a samurai sword.
9. Clary Fray (Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series) – Clary is your average, run-of-the-mill teenage girl – right up until she enters the Pandemonium Club and has an encounter with a group of Shadowhunters. She’s not even supposed to be able to see them – but she does, and watches them kill a demon. Eventually she finds out that the reason she can see Shadowhunters and Downworlders is because she is a Shadowhunter – and not only that, her father is the big bad evil. Even without a lifetime of Shadowhunter training, Clary manages to kick ass – mostly armed with a snarky sense of humor.
10. Stephanie Plum (Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series) – She’s unlucky, clumsy, and inept, but somehow, in spite of that, she manages to be pretty kick-ass. After losing her job as a lingerie buyer, she goes to work for her cousin as a bounty hunter. She’s even got a snarky sidekick, a former hooker named Lula. With the help of her on-again, off-again detective boyfriend, Joe Morelli, and a former-military security specialist named Ranger (who also wants in Stephanie’s pants) she actually manages to get her collars – most of the time.