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Recommendations for good epic fantasy with female lead?


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Initial post: Jul 24, 2012 6:09:51 AM PDT
J. Goldstein says:
I have read most of the major epic fantasy series (Wheel of Time, Song of Ice and Fire, Sword of Truth, Shannarah, Mistborn ).
Can anyone recommend a well written series or even standalone novel with a strong female lead. Mistborn was unique to me in that sense, as I enjoyed reading about a world primarily through the eyes of a female character.

Are there any major works that may be up my alley?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 24, 2012 10:10:26 AM PDT
I confess I haven't read it, but I do have it on my shelf, ready to be read, and I have heard good things about it: The Deed of Paksenarrion: A Novel.

Posted on Jul 24, 2012 11:29:38 AM PDT
M. Carole says:
If you don't mind lots of romance in your epic fantasy, I'd recommend Jacqueline Carey: Kushiel's Dart. Great books, but the protagonist is a courtesean so I'm not sure if that's what you'd be interested in.

Posted on Jul 24, 2012 1:22:45 PM PDT
StriderNeo15 says:
The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive)

Maybe give this a shot since you enjoyed Mistborn.

It's not entirely from a females perspective, but out of the 3 main characters one is a female whose storyline is pretty good.

The Book itself is incredible though, imo.

Posted on Jul 24, 2012 2:05:51 PM PDT
Chance says:
I'd suggest Son of Avonar (Bridge of D'Arnath) by Carol Berg.

Posted on Jul 25, 2012 5:29:54 PM PDT
Ann P. says:
I'm personally a fan of The Black Jewels: Trilogy: Daughter of the Blood / Heir to the Shadows / Queen of the Darkness.

Posted on Jul 26, 2012 3:39:13 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Jul 30, 2012 5:47:22 AM PDT]

Posted on Jul 26, 2012 4:29:39 AM PDT
The Deed of Paksennarion is good another stronge female lead is C J Cherryh's "The Chronicles of Morgaine"

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 26, 2012 5:31:02 AM PDT
Oh yes, I'd forgotten about Morgaine. (Although I'm not surprised - I've had a copy for about 20 years, and never read it. I ought to rectify that!)

Posted on Jul 26, 2012 5:37:54 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 26, 2012 5:38:18 AM PDT
BethW says:
Many of Mercedes Lackey's Valdemar books have strong female leads. Arrows of the Queen (Heralds of Valdemar). By the Sword (Kerowyn's Tale) is pretty much a stand alone. Otherwise she tends towards trilogies.

Posted on Jul 26, 2012 6:11:43 AM PDT
D. Wilkins says:
Epsilon Eridani 1: Our Children On MeadBarr

Posted on Jul 26, 2012 7:42:02 PM PDT
I've just made this recommendation in a another thread- but Fire Logic is the first in the trilogy (followed by Earth Logic and Water Logic). The main character is a lesbian, and it's a gay-friendly world- as in it doesn't really matter who you fall in love with, but there is no sexual content except innuendo. The novel is a new take in fantasy with great world-building and a fresh and innovative magic system.

Philip Pulman's The Golden Compass and its sequels are all in the point of view of Lyra, who is a little girl, but a female MC nonetheless. IMO, the other books in the series don't compare to the first, which is highly original and extremely well-written,but I usually feel that way about most series.

The Princess Series by Jim C. Heines is what I would call a YA growing into the adult realm style. There are four books in the series and they eventually grow darker, more serious and heartbreaking towards the last novel- The Snow Princess' Shadow, which is a bitter-sweet endgame. All in all, it's a refreshing new tale on the traditional fairy tale. Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White retell their "true" stories and have to overcome very adult traumas, some girly issues and generally test the mettle of their friendship.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 27, 2012 4:53:19 PM PDT
Joolz says:
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Posted on Jul 27, 2012 8:45:56 PM PDT
Try "Firebird: A Trilogy" by Kathy Tyres. The one I have is all three books in one, I don't remember what the individual books are called but they're fantastically written. They do have a strong religious twist to them, but it's not preachy.

Posted on Jul 29, 2012 6:35:29 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Jul 29, 2012 10:31:26 AM PDT]

Posted on Jul 30, 2012 12:11:40 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Jul 30, 2012 5:44:40 AM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 30, 2012 12:12:03 PM PDT
Jenster says:
Do you know who the author is?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 30, 2012 12:48:43 PM PDT
C.J. Cherryh's "Gates of Ivrel" series. Don't be put off by the bimbo-graphic on the front of the papergraph. The main character, Morgaine, is rock-solid. My favorite Morgaine quote is:

"I no longer have the luxury of honor."

There is NOTHING cliche about what Cherryh writes, especially her Morgaine work.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 30, 2012 12:49:33 PM PDT
I 100% agree.

Posted on Jul 30, 2012 2:00:14 PM PDT
I recently read the Touchstone trilogy by Andrea K. Host. It was very interesting. I believe it was written for YA but caught me and held me through all three books.

Posted on Jul 30, 2012 9:06:51 PM PDT
Jacob King says:
I really enjoyed Trudi Canavan's The Magicians Guild series but it is very YA. Another good one is the Obernewton Chronicles by Isabelle Carmody - its more postapocalyptic than high fantasy but is an engrossing quest epic series that builds as it goes along.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 30, 2012 9:16:31 PM PDT
Joanna Fay says:
Also, you could try Juliet Marillier's Sevenwaters series, for beautifully written fantasy with an atmospheric Celtic setting.
Or if you enjoy crossover into space opera epics, Margaret Weis' Star of the Guardians quartet has interesting, complex female and male leads.

Posted on Jul 30, 2012 9:18:24 PM PDT
I would recommend any books by Juliet Marillier. Most of them are completely from the female's perspective and the couple that aren't share between the male and female. The Sevenwaters series is my all time favorite. I have read the books so many times! If you want to try her out with a stand alone book first instead of getting into a series though, you can try Heart's Blood. Again, I recommend all of her books though. I have got many people into reading her and they all have loved her writing.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 30, 2012 9:46:12 PM PDT
Joanna Fay says:
Yes, she's great. And her new novel Shadowfell is out now, although not as an e-book yet, I think.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 31, 2012 7:26:19 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 31, 2012 7:27:56 AM PDT
I don't think you could call it epic fantasy, but it is excellent in terms of world-building, character development, and plotting. "The Wizard of Earthsea" series has two books, "The Tombs of Atuan" and "Tehanu" that are told in limited third person from the perspective of a woman.

You should read the first and third books so as to get the narrative thread. "Tombs of Atuan" is a gripping narrative about the nameless one, a priestess to the old gods. She gives up her name and identity, serving the dark primordial forces that dwell in an elaborate network of caves.
When a stranger from the west comes, the girl whose life is dictated by older priestesses, finally has power over someone. They cannot discover that she has allowed this Western wizard to live in and desecrate this holy place.
"Tehanu" is I think a distinctly feminine series, about the violence men do to little people, and it is a meditative read without the sprawling adventure of the rest of the series, but full of meaning.
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Discussion in:  Fantasy forum
Participants:  56
Total posts:  69
Initial post:  Jul 24, 2012
Latest post:  Sep 29, 2012

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