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The Extraordinary Heroine

Heather Massey is the guest at Dear Author today talking about the lack of extraordinary heroines in romance.

She’s absolutely right.  Think about all the paranormals and urban fantasies out there.  How many of them have powerful, alpha males with more interesting or unique powers than the heroine?  Can you name one where the heroine truly has a unique power that makes her extraordinary compared to the uber sexy and powerful male?

Which made me think about the Bechdel Test.  Many of our most popular SFF movies fail to have more than one female character.  Or if there are more women, all they do is sit around and talk about the hero.  It’s their only purpose.

How sad is that?

Which is totally why Lady Wyre and her universe was born.  I wanted women in control.  Strong, interesting, unique women who commanded not just Society but also government, sciences, you name it.  Lady Wyre is a scientist, whose research forms the foundational technology of the entire galaxy.  Queen Majel is the supreme ruler of Britannia, an antagonist in many ways but also sympathetic.  In Lady Doctor Wyre, the president of Americus (loosely based on Andrew Jackson) is a woman, and she’s desperately trying to save her colony from Majel’s wrath.  Even Jean Lafitte, the famous pirate, is a woman!

Cunning, intelligent, strong women.  They do more than sit around and talk about the men, because they’re all busy trying to save themselves, the ones they love, their trade, ship, colony, world…while looking fabulous at the same time.  :lol:

So what’s your favorite strong female character, whether from a movie or book?  And does that story pass the Bechdel Test?