Today's topic: favorite heroines from books. It was fucking hard! There aren't that many female heroines (as in leading ladies, protagonists) who are relevant enough to be even considered candidates AND that I like. I will do a favorite heroes, male-only version next week and maybe I'll go for a "characters from other media" list in the future.
#1 Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series (J.K. Rowling).
She's bookish and introvert but she always finds the courage to fight with Harry. Actually, without her help, the boy who lived might have not made it past the first book.
#2 Matilda from Matilda (Roald Dahl)
Probably one of my favorite children's books of all time. As a kid I admired Matilda for standing up to a bunch of stupid adults and I really, really wanted to have her powers.
Whether it's Sophocles's "canonical" play or any of the modern adaptations (I would personally go with Salvador Espriu's text), Antigone is probably one of my favorite characters from Greek mythology: she's willing to give up her life and actually dies for defending her ideals.
#4 Katniss Everdeen from the Hunger Games trilogy (Suzanne Collins).
I'll be honest: at some points during the first book I didn't like her that much and she never becomes 100% charismatic, but in a world where female characters are not so often allowed to be the hero that saves the day, she's some of the best we have.
#5 Eliza Doolittle from Pygmalion (George Bernard Shaw).
The play version, not the musical version. She rocks.
#6 Rose from Patron Saint of Liars (Ann Patchett).
The way I saw it, she's a sort of antihero, actually, but you empathise with her and her life choices even if you disagree with them. I like complex characters that fuck up their lives, what can I say...
#7 Mariam and Laila from A Thousand Splendid Suns (Khaled Hosseini).
Laila is a fighter in a world that is out to get her. Mariam resigns to follow its rules until she realises it's no longer possible. They share this entry because they are from the same book, but they would deserve separate entries.
#8 Bridget Jones from Bridget Jones's Diary (Helen Fielding)
This shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone.
#9 Brienne of Tarth from the A Song of Ice and Fire series (George R. R. Martin)
In this particular book series, women who are also protagonists have two roles to choose from: they're either two-faced bitches or by-the-book noble women. Brienne defies the traditional roles, which makes her awesome. Runner-ups for this place, from this series, were Sansa Stark (yes, I like her, and from book 1 despite, you know, everything) and Arianne Martell.
#10 Tita from Como agua para chocolate (Laura Esquivel)
Poor Tita sees her boyfriend get married to her older sister to stay close to her, which only brings more unhappiness to her life, leaving only the kitchen as her own space and the only place where she finds solace.