Sep 29, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday (149)

is a weekly feature created by The Broke and the Bookish.

This Tuesday's theme is...

I struggled a little bit with this week's topic--Top Ten Books to Read if You Like (insert popular book or author here)--simple because I couldn't think of ten books that were similar to one. I was attempting to compile one list when I got an idea for another based on one of the books on said list: Code Name Verity. I couldn't possibly think of ten books (that I've read, at least) about war and strong friendships and that's written in letters and features flying and all that jazz. But I could think of ten books that, like Code Name Verity (which I loved, by the way) featured strong women in difficult situations who were able to fend/care for themselves and knocking down female boundaries. I've purposely excluded some bigger, more obvious books like Throne of Glass, The Hunger Games, and the Lunar Chronicles. The following ten books feature female characters who can kick ass and defy the standards placed on them.

Victoria Darling

[Goodreads | Review] Victoria exists in 1909 London, a time when ladies were married of for a good pairing and certainly didn't draw nudes--or pose as one herself--for art. But what Victoria wants is art, plain and simple. In A Mad, Wicked Folly, Victoria will push against society to do what she wants to do--not what they want her to.

Kate Thompson

[Goodreads | Review] Kate lives in a time where the dirty work is for the boys. But when her father is murdered, she decides to take matters into her own hands and head down the road for revenge. She'll pose as a boy to do it, but she'll do what it takes to seek vengeance.

Lila Bard

[Goodreads] Lila Bard simply wants to see the world before she dies. But that's hard to accomplish in her London and as a girl, so she masquerades as a boy, and wears an actual mask as she tries to get by on thievery. The thing about Lila, however, is that she doesn't take no for an answer.


[Goodreads | Review] Sophie is a young girl stuck in the war-filled Congo. In order to get to safety, she has traverse dangerous terrain, but with the help of a young bonobo named Otto. Together, they risk their lives in order to survive--and it's a remarkable story.

Elisa de Riqueza

[Goodreads | Review] I've always seen Elisa as a simple, somewhat average girl with the fortune/misfortune of having power and the potential for greatness stowed upon her. Throughout the entirety of this series, she defies and odds and fights. I love that she's simple and average, because she can be that and still kick some serious ass.

Penryn Young

[Goodreads | Review] Penryn is really just a human girl. But it just so happens that her world has been taken over by destructive angels of the apocalypse. Penryn doesn't like that, and she just wants to protect her sister, so she'll do what it takes in order to keep the people she loves safe (and she's a total badass).

Ismae & Sybella 

[Goodreads | Review | Goodreads | Review] (I still haven't read Mortal Heart, or it would probably be on here.) What I love about this series is that it pulls these girls from such shitty situation and teaches them to fight back. Ismae and Sybella kick ass in their own ways, and they are both such strong women who fight for what's right--and themselves.


[Goodreads | Review] Scarlet would probably fit in with the girls from the His Fair Assassins trilogy (above). She dresses like a boy--and pretends to be Will Scarlet--so that she can join be a member of Robin Hood's Merry Gang and play like the boys do. She can shoot an arrow and throw a knife and fight for the people, and, you guessed it, she's a badass.

Claire Danvers

[Goodreads] I almost didn't put Claire on this list, but then I realized she totally fits. I mean, she's like sixteen and already in college (hey, bullies), and she lives in a town run by vampires. But little Claire will still carry a stake and tell of the vamps, and she will go to school and get As, vampires be damned.

Lottie Fiske

[Goodreads | Review] Lottie might be the youngest girl on this list, but she might also be the strongest. You see, Lottie sacrifices a lot not so much for herself, but to try and save her dying best friend. And if you ask me, that's a whole other level of bravery and defiance.

(I totally forgot about the Gone series, so insert like every girl in that series here.)

Who are some of your favorite female characters who defy the odds?


  1. I've heard "Code Name Verity" was really good. Alas, it's yet another book I haven't read.

  2. I DO like CODE NAME VERITY but unfortunately I haven't read the other books on your list so now I have a new list of books to explore.
    My TTT

  3. Great idea! I just recently read (and loved) Code Name Verity! I'm actually reading Rose Under Fire right now and it's even more heartbreaking than Code Name! A Mad Wicked Folly has been on my TBR for a long time, so I'm glad to see it on your list. The Water and the Wild is new to me, but that cover is stunning! The premise sounds really heartwarming/heartbreaking. I will have to add it to my TBR!
    Mallory @ The Local Muse

  4. Heard so many great things about A darker Shade of Magic and Angelfall. I'll definitely add it on my TBR

  5. Great list!
    I can't believe that I haven't read any books in this list yet, despite my good intentions. I will definitely have to check these out. I talked about kick-butt female protagonists in my TTT this week too!
    My TTT
    Olivia @ Fluttering Pages

  6. I'm SO reading Vengeance Road soon. I keep seeing it pop up. Fantastic list! :)

  7. I love the way you spun this. Books about strong females in difficult ways who break gender barriers are some of my favorites. I love Code Name Verity of the books on the list I have read I also loved, the ones I haven't read are on my TBR. Great list!
    Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally

  8. I have heard good things about A Mad Wicked Folly but haven't gotten around to reading it. I'm currently reading A Darker Shade of Magic and I agree with your assessment :D Great list!

    My TTT

    Obsessive Compulsive Reader

  9. I love your theme for this week! So many awesome women in so many different times and places.

  10. Kate, Lila, and Penryn are great characters!

    Check out my TTT.

  11. Love the Morganville Vampire Series
    My ttt

  12. This is an AWESOME list, Rachel. I haven't read any of these except Scarlet and A Mad Wicked Folly but yay new books to devour!!!!!

    My TTT-

  13. Quite a few of these are on my TBR, including Code Name Verity itself!
    My TTT:

  14. I love Code Name Verity and I loved the His Fair Assassin trilogy. I just got A Mad, Wicked Folly from the library today and am looking forward to it.
    Thanks for sharing!

  15. This is a really great list! I'm always looking for books with strong women. I really can't wait to read Vengeance Road - a badass lady in the Wild West is definitely my kind of story.
    My TTT


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