This is response to Shanah, the Bionic Book Worm‘s weekly challenge, with a bit of a more family-friendly title. 😉
1. Mara Jade, Emperor’s Hand, and so much more.
This lovely lady is no one to mess around with, and IMHO, the best person outside of the original films. We meet her first in Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn. These books and the many that followed to continue the saga of Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo and all our favorites are just wonderful. I still remember standing in a bookstore decades ago now reading it. (Vision of the Future is much further on. I love the picture of her here.) This young woman makes it perfectly clear to Leia she is there to assassinate her brother. Luke willingly gives her several opportunities to do so, but she does not take advantage of them. What stops her? This woman has a fascinating character arc. I did not keep up after I moved to the Shire in 2004, but still she remains a favorite of mine. Maybe one day I will go back and read more. The first time I saw Black Widow from the Marvel movies, I said, “There’s Mara Jade!” I wish the newer Star Wars movies decided to follow these stories rather than the nonsense they did.
I do not understand anyone who stands by the ridiculous assertion Tolkien does not have strong females in his stories. This lovely lady is half-Elf and half-Maia and is beloved of Beren, a man. Her father, Thingol, is not wild about this match, and so sets before Beren, an impossible task: retrieve a Silmaril from the devil himself, Morgoth, and then you can have my daughter. Thingol is confident this will end Beren’s silly talk about a mere mortal seeking the hand of an Elf maiden, not to mention the end of Beren himself. But Thingol does not know the strength of true love or the lengths his daughter and her love will go to make this quest successful. This is my favorite part from The Silmarillion.
See above first sentence. Two strong females! “I am no man!” One of my favorite lines. You do not want to be on this shieldmaiden’s bad side, as the Lord of the Nazgûl discovers. His surprise does not last long. She is also the luckiest lass in all Middle-earth because she marries Faramir. A win-win situation. 🙂 Art by Ted Nasmith. I imagine St. Joan of Arc looking like this, just as fiery and defiant in the face of her enemy.
4. Princess Leia
This strong lady takes no gruff from anyone. She fearlessly and saucily stands up to her enemies, fights against all the evil they represent, suffers much but nothing stops her from being a major pain to her greatest adversaries.
This is another fiery princess, this time from The Chronicles of Prydain. She has zero interest in being a lady or a princess. She wants to be a warrior and is a much valued companion of Taran, Assistant Pig-Keeper, through many perils. Picture credit: http://prydain.wikia.com.