Hi, in the light of the last post that you reblog, about writers and female characters, do you have any recommendation of book, fantasy or others, that treat well their female characters?
1. Garth Nix
Always and forever my favourite in terms of male-writer-writing-female-POVs. In his Old Kingdom saga, Nix has given us some of the richest, most fully realised women in high fantasy, simply because he treats them with the same respect and belief in their capabilities as most writers treat their male protagonists. Sabriel, Lirael, and Clariel are vastly different from one another, tied together only because of magical ties, and those ties do not ever influence characterisation.
In his Keys to the Kingdom books, we get another cast of excellent female characters - the protagonist here is male, but his primary supporting cast is predominantly female, including two of my favourite ever gals, Leaf and Suzy Turquoise Blue.
Beef though I have with Gaiman over my zombie wife (ily more than he does Laura), he writes incredibly realistically real women. Coraline is probably the best portrayal of a nosy, too-clever-for-her-own-good but essentially good natured unhappy girl I’ve ever read, and I’ve read a lot of them. Yvaine is (literally) a goddess (kind of). They occupy dominant roles in their narratives, do not depend on the men around them, and are generally really great.
3. Philip Pullman
Lyra Belaqua is the best goddamn character in the world fight me.
Now that I’m slightly calmer: Pullman treats all his characters the same. Mrs Coulter is evil, and probably insane on some level, but is just as human as Asriel, who is also probably evil and insane, just on a bigger scale. Lyra is absolutely perfect, in that she’s an often mean-spirited little witch who lies like it’s going out of style but who cries because the Harpies have never been loved but have good in their souls anyways. Serafina Pekkala!! Xaphania! MARY MALONE!!
Also: They get swept under the rug but the Sally Lockhart Mysteries are absolutely excellent Victoriania mystery novels and Billie Piper was perfect as Sally, which I think is all you should need to convince you. Billie Piper’s face touches JJ Feild’s in the BBC adaptation. Love yourself. Give this to yourself.
4. Lian Hearn
I will rec these books from hell, so you should have expected this: PLEASE LOVE YOURSELF (and me) AND READ THE TALES OF THE OTORI.
Hearn restricts herself per the culture she’s writing, and the women are all intensely influenced thereby, but they’re all still amazing. They’re all incredibly strong, they all survive so many horrors and pains, and they all come through it as these just really wonderful characters. You’ve got angels (Shizuka) and demons (I c u Hana), and everything in between (my first ever wife, Shirakawa Kaede), and there are so! Many! Female POVs! In the sequel novel (the primary trilogy is split between two POVs, one of which is Kaede’s). I just!! Please read them. Love me. Please.
5. Terry Pratchett (GNU)
PLEASE. Discworld is vast and it contains multitudes (of kickass ladies). The women of Discworld are as varied as its influences, and like. I honestly don’t know how to convince you of the necessity of your reading Discworld??
Imagine it like this: Every fantasy archetype you’ve ever wanted to read is contained (and subverted) in a world that acknowledges itself as ridiculous, a world which dabbles with all kinds of modern marvels but which tends to find itself a little in danger of destruction, a world on the cusp of an industrial revolution.