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March 2018, Part 1

Teen Board Monthly Question

March 2018, Part 1

As you may or may not know, March is Women’s History Month, a time when we celebrate all the rockin’ ladies who gave their lives and efforts to making the world a much better (and more equal) place. With that in mind, we asked our Teen Board members about some of their favorite female authors or heroines, whether they are endlessly witty, fiercely strong, or always writing the perfect endings to complicated storylines. Read below to find out who they're celebrating this month.

Two of my all time favorite female characters are the two that Sarah J Maas created. Both Feyre Archeron and Celaena Sardothien. I think this goes without saying but both of these women are strong and independent. They manage to impress me whenever they are in a scene. Reading about them makes me feel strong and unstoppable. While these two main are very different they are both very inspiring and kick butt characters. These women are definitely a representation of strong females. --- Abigail D.

One of my all time favorite female characters is Elizabeth Bennet in Jane Austen's PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. She is one of the few strong and inspiring characters I have encountered in realistic fiction. Even though the book was written in the 19th century, Lizzy has a remarkably modern outlook. She speaks her mind and defies societal expectations. Despite the fact that we live in totally different worlds, I found it easy to identify with Lizzy. --- Alice D.

The most important female writers are the ones who paved the way for the female writers of modern times. From Jane Austen, the the Bronte sisters, to even the more modern writers like Margaret Atwood, these women have established a literary tradition for the present female authors to add to. Without the fight early female writers had to endure, female authors would not be considered as equal as their male counterparts in current times. So shoutout to all of the female authors in the previous centuries for paving the way for all of the awesome authors and female-centered stories that are growing increasingly normalized! --- Anna Kate L.

I have so many favorite female authors and heroines it’s hard to choose just a few, but here are some female authors and heroines I love! J. K. Rowling will always be important to me, as the Harry Potter series meant (and still means) so much to me. Marie Lu is another one of my favorites, the Legend trilogy is one of my all-time favorite series and The Young Elites series and WARCROSS are also fantastic. Cassandra Clare is also an amazing female author, she has created such a unique and interesting world and has written a spectacular selection of books. On the subject of heroines, my favorites would have to include Hermione Granger and Ginny Weasley, these two characters were really the first female characters I ever looked up to and I cherish them so much. I also absolutely love June Iparis from the Legend trilogy, she showed me how a girl can be tough, smart, and be allowed to care about things like what she looks like all at the same time. Isabelle Lightwood again showed me that you can be interested in fashion and still be strong, something that I feel like was important for me to see when I first read The Mortal Instruments. Last but not least, Tessa Gray is also so important to me, she likes to read, she cares about others so intensely, and she’s just an all-around super powerful, amazing woman. --- Ansley K.

Some of my favorite female authors would have to be Gayle Forman, Cassandra Clare, Lois Lowry, Laura Ingalls Wilder and Tamara Ireland Stone. All of these authors have written books that are so inspiring and truly captivated me. --- Ashley D.

Ok I can't answer this question with anyone else other than Hermione Granger, from Harry Potter. Why is that? Because she's amazing. She's the smartest witch, and she's not afraid to show it off. She stays true to herself, even when that gets her friends mad. And as the Yule Ball proves, she can look completely bomb if she bothers to try, she just prefers to be her natural self. I totally admire all of these qualities and Hermione has many of the traits I strive to have. --- Becky N.

I have SO many favorite strong female heroines that it’s hard to pick just a few. However, I really enjoy all of the main female characters from The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. When I first discovered the series, I had no idea how Meyer would manage to combine fairy tale characters with science fiction. I soon read the books and discovered that not only was it possible, Meyer completely nailed it in creating strong and independent characters who weren’t perfect. To me, Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter are some of the best female heroines in YA fiction. --- Breck G.

Some of my favorite female writers are Leslye Walton, Rainbow Rowell, and Laini Taylor. These three amazing writers have one of many things in common: they all write well-rounded, dynamic, and inspirational female characters. Not only are these characters strong, they are also real. A female protagonist does not have to be fighting against a dystopian regime to be strong; they can be strong just by being open, honest, and kind. In my life, I look to these female authors and characters for inspiration and comfort in a sometimes complicated world. --- Bryn D.

In honor of not only Women’s History Month but also the release of OBSIDIO, I have to shine some appreciation on one of my favorite female authors, Amie Kaufman. No matter what book I read by her, Amie always writes an entertaining plot with amazing characters. Along with her two frequent coauthors, she’s amazing at collaboration and always crafts perfect twists to her books. However, no only is her writing flawless, but she’s also an amazing and kind person. Plus her dog is super super cute which of course makes her even better. --- Brynn S.

A strong female lead almost immediately pulls me to any book, but one in particular I love is Emma Carstairs from THE DAR ARTIFICIES by Cassandra Clare. Emma is a fiercely brave and willing to take any risk to do good. She’s an unbelievable warrior, whose strength does not mar her femininity when she chooses to embrace it. And of course I love her creator Cassandra Clare. She has created countless books I adore, with diverse characters and a world I will never get bored of. --- Caitlyn K.

As a teenage girl and a fellow feminist, it’s no secret that I am obsessed with strong heroines and female authors. One that always stuck with me was Linh Cinder from The Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer. She is sassy, awkward, caring, and just done with life! She was exactly who I am and also who I inspire to be. Another character would be Inej Ghafa from Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. She is passionate and kick-butt, and she takes no trash from anyone! While I can go on forever, I would like to also mention Luna Lovegood from Harry Potter. What sticks out the most to me is that she is witty, curious, and she isn’t afraid to be herself. She shows that kindness and individuality are just as important as physical strength and sassiness. As for authors, personal favorites include Sarah J. Maas, Leigh Bardugo, Marissa Meyer, Laini Taylor, and Victoria Schwab. All of these women do a magnificent jobs at creating all kinds of diverse, strong female characters and dynamic female friendships and romantic relationships. If I am ever lucky enough to write a novel, I wish to write female characters the way they do and the way they deserved to be represented. --- Daniella R.

There are so many amazing female characters in YA these days that it's almost impossible to pick a favorite (which is an awesome problem to have btw!). One of my all time favorite heroines is Tessa Gray from The Mortal Instruments Series. She overcomes so many obstacles both with entering a new world and forging relationships between her past and present. Tessa also shares the love for reading that we all do! It was amazing to read about a character who appreciated stories while being in the mist of a fantastical world full of demons and shadowhunters. I definitely learned a lot from Tessa and look up to her as one of the strongest female protagonists out there in YA! --- Danielle F.

My favorite female heroine is Carly Vega from JOYRIDE. She's incredibly fierce and cares a lot for her family, which I admire. --- Dylan C.

Recent years have brought an upsurge in female authors, female characters, and female themes to YA. One of my favorite books that combines all three is MY LADY JANE. Co-written by three fiercely female authors, MY LADY JANE brings the history of Lady Jane Grey to life, but with a twist. Not only does this story show that females have been kicking butt since before the 16th century, but the main character Jane is witty, intelligent, and very, very relatable. The story is written with grace and humor and is certainly something to be celebrated! --- Ellie T.

My all time favorite female author is Sarah J. Maas. I just think that she is so brilliant with her writing. She is always keeping her readers on the edge of their seats and leaves them wanting more! She knows how to include a strong and powerful female heroin in all of her stories. They are very empowering and they give other girls the courage to stand up for what they believe in and feel confident in themselves. --- Emily F.

One of my favorite authors is Danielle Paige, author of the DOROTHY MUST DIE series. Her series and antecedent prequel series is a refreshing take on the classic Wizard of Oz story. She perfectly balanced the romantic aspects, a difficult task in YA fiction, while allowing the protagonist, Amy Gumm, to hold her own against the dangerous evils of Oz. In fact, every character was independent and capable of fending for themselves. Even though I recently read this series I can already tell I will reread it many times in the future. --- Emily G.

My favorite female author -as far as creating awesome female characters goes- is Julia Alvarez. Her books have been around for a long time but I discovered their magic about two years ago. My all time favorite book is IN THE TIME OF THE BUTTERFLIES. Julia Alvarez took the time to research the true stories of the Butterflies and let her imagination take hold. Seriously, this is a must read for people that love history, government conspiracy theories and most of all strong, fearless heroines. As for YA, Victoria Aveyard is definitely the author to follow. Victoria Aveyard keeps up with societal trends while retaining her voice. I think that is one of the most admirable traits in anybody, especially an author with enough reach to influence an audience. I know that all RED QUEEN fans are excited to read the conclusion to the series and know that Ms.Averyard will find a way to make it perfect. --- Flor H.

There are a countless amount of female authors that I look up to for their constant display of determination, compassion, and intellect. Because of their words, I have been able to become a stronger person by having more confidence in myself and my abilities. There are three particular ladies that I need to thank here. For one, I wouldn’t be where I am today without Cassandra Clare. I know that I can never shut up about her and her brilliant works, but there is clearly a reason. I have met Cassie twice and both times she has been nothing but wonderful to me in the brief moments we have shared. I picked up The Shadowhunter Chronicles at a very important time in my life, which truly shaped my identity as a reader. Tessa Gray from The Infernal Devices has become one of my favorite literary characters to date because I see so much of myself in her---- not only who I am now, but who I want to be in the future. Recently, I was given the opportunity to interview Ashley Poston for her release of HEART OF IRON. Leading up to the interview and throughout the entire event, Ashley was nothing but supportive of me and my content. I am so honored that I had the opportunity to speak with such a fearless fangirl. She truly helped me to find a new passion and determination as a YouTube creator. There is nobody else that I would have wanted to interview first. Her and her beautiful books have spoken to me in a way that no others have. Over the past few years, I have developed a relationship with Emily France, the author of SIGNS OF YOU. I read her debut in a time where I really resonated with the focus of the novel: grief. I was about three months away from losing my grandfather and the Pulse shooting had just taken place. I was in a really dark mindset, but her words helped me to find light in a dark situation. Her sophomore release, ZEN AND GONE, comes out in July. She recently sent me an ARC of it with the sweetest note. I could not be more grateful to have connected with her in the manner that I did. --- Gabby B.

As a hardcore feminist, I have a lot to say about Women’s History Month. March is one of my least favorite months of the year because of the weather here in Connecticut, but Women’s History Month is of the utmost importance to me. I have plenty of favorite female authors: the books I read are almost EXCLUSIVELY written by awesome women. Leigh Bardugo, Jennifer Matheiu, Sarah J. Maas, Marie Lu, Becky Albertalli; the list could go on forever. As for incredible female characters, there are hundreds of names that could go on this list. The first that comes to mind is Feyre from the COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES series. She is incredibly powerful with her different types of magic, but her biggest girl power comes from her standing up to her overbearing, straight-up tyrannical fiancé and getting herself out of a horrible relationship. One of my absolute favorite feminist characters comes from MOXIE by Jennifer Mathieu- Viv is a political powerhouse that starts a FEMINIST REVOLUTION in her high school. If there is one character I have ever looked up to, it’s her. The infamous Inej Ghafa, ms. “I will have you without your armor or I will not have you at all” also comes to mind almost immediately, because have you ever seen a girl be so powerful? Escaping human trafficking and becoming a mind-blowing assassin seems pretty powerful to me. And of course, the “brightest witch of her age,” Hermione Granger! In terms of things other than books, because I am a Marvel fanatic, I have to throw a couple of my favorite MCU baddies in: Valkyrie, the angelic warrior from Asgard, who helps lead the fight against the evil Hela, and looks incredible while doing it. Shuri, King T’Challa’s little sister, smarter and more technologically advanced than TONY STARK at only 16 YEARS OLD. And of course, Peggy Carter, who faced so much adversity, being a woman in World War II, who went on to found S.H.I.E.L.D. and prove her haters wrong. There are tons more ladies I could talk about, but these are my absolute favorite. I hope everyone has an incredible Women’s History Month, and always remembers to FIGHT LIKE A GIRL! --- Gabby V.

The young adult genre is fortunate enough to be full of diverse and talented authors who happen to be wonderful women. I especially appreciate female authors who use their writing to make the world a more empathetic and educated place. Recently, I have been incredibly delighted by the works of Marie Marquardt, Amber Smith, and Reshma Saujani. With strong female authors, books can include more strong female characters. Some of my recent favorite characters are Kate Harker from THIS SAVAGE SONG, Nova from RENEGADES, and Diana from WONDER WOMAN: WARBRINGER. I am so thankful for all of the amazing female authors who have written stories that have influenced my worldview and made me a better person. --- Grace P.

Some of my favorite female authors include Angie Thomas, Marissa Meyers, Sarah J. Maas, J.K Rowling, Cassandra Clare, and Colleen Hoover. The list is endless really, I love all of these authors and so much more because of the way their words and characters make me feel so much emotion. My favorite heroines include Isabelle Lightwood, Celaena Sordothien, Starr Carter, Claire Fraser, Jenny Fraser, Hermione Granger, Inej Ghafa (from SIX OF CROWS) and Annabeth Chase. I love these female characters for how badass they are and for how much I look up to them for their strength. There are obviously so many more characters I could list but these are the ones that stick out to me right now. --- Ilona K.

I have so many favorites! For favorite authors, I have to say Cassandra Clare, Sarah J. Maas, and Mackenzi Lee. They have all done amazing jobs pushing forward YA literature, and they also produce books which are must-reads for me! My favorite heroines are all over the place! I love Clary from The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare because she is both nerdy and kick-butt at the same. Women are often thought of as one or the other. I love that Clary can be both. Juliette from the Shatter Me series by Tahereh Mafi is also a favorite of mine. She has been through so much over the course of those books, with so much more happening in the new series. She has been abused, locked up, and tortured, and she still found the strength to do everything she did. That said, there is one thing I would like to see more of. In the future, I hope we get more heroines with mental health differences. As someone with depression and anxiety, I would love to see a heroine outside of an 'issues' book that can kick butt. --- Isabel C.