Hiya! Cynthia here!
I am thoroughly ashamed to admit it took me so long to get to this amazing author, Tamora Pierce. I know, I know! How could it have taken me so long to start reading them? I don’t even know, some of my favorite authors list Ms. Pierce as their inspiration and I just never got around to picking up any of her many, many books. Now that I’ve started, I can’t stop. I’ve gone through 11 books and am working on the 12th one, which is the last book in the Protector of the Small series. I really want to promote all of her work but since I’m only working through it myself, I’ll only recommend the ones that I’ve read. The Song of the Lioness series includes Alanna: The First Adventure, In the Hand of the Goddess, The Woman Who Rides Like a Man, and Lioness Rampant. The Immortals series has Wild Magic, Wolf-Speaker, Emperor Mage and The Realms of the Gods. The Protector of the Small series contains First Test, Page, Squire and Lady Knight.
So far it’s been an amazing collection of books. All the ones that I have read take place in one universe, Tortall. It’s a wonderful place filled with magic and chivalrous knights battling for justice and protection of the innocent. A perfect place for young girls to fight for what they believe in and prove to the world that girls are more impressive than boys like to think. These 3 series have had amazing female roles who were determined and strong, standing back on their own two feet no matter how many times people knocked them down. The best part about the main characters—they were wonderfully flawed just like each and everyone one of us! Alanna for example, in Song of the Lioness series, was known for her temper. She was quick to anger and threw out harsh words, but it was the addition of these flaws that made her so likable.
I think the only complaint I have about Ms. Pierce’s books is that the love in these stories comes too slow. Haha, okay, I know that these aren’t romance focused books but they’re stories about believing in oneself, family and friends but I am just a sucker for love! I just wish the love part came a little bit faster! That hasn’t stopped me from speeding through her last 7 books though!
If you enjoy strong female characters set in a fantasy world like Graceling (Kristin Cashore) , or Crown Duel (Sherwood Smith), don’t hesitate to check these out. They are totally excellent! Happy Reading!