Thursday, October 6, 2011

Not every heroine has to be an assassin

I love a good Urban Fantasy. One that carries me away to a world where things are possible - and impossible.

But there is a common denominator in many of the books in this genre whenever I am drifting through the aisles of the bookstore - all the females on the cover are armed! Knives, grenades, guns...they're killers! I guess that's one way to have action in the book, but do all female heroines have to be an assassin?

That's where I was going with "Sterling" when I first sat down and started to hash out an idea. But then I put myself in her situation. She was recently a mortal and I couldn't imagine myself kicking ass and chewing bubble gum just because of the simple fact I was immortal. Plus, what would be her purpose in life? This is the beginning of her journey and who knows how a lifetime of struggle may shape the person she will become.

She is learning that she CAN be tough, but it's within her limitations of learning what her skills are. Life among Breed is not easy, you don't wake up in the morning, sip your coffee and pay taxes. There's a current of tension stirring below the surface - many of them are centuries old and harboring old prejudices and a distaste for one another and for the fact they're forced to live in secrecy. It is a complex and dangerous world in which one has to learn to fight and toughen up. But there is also a risk of losing your humanity along the way.

A heroine can be brave through intelligence and learning from her mistakes. She can be a warrior through selfless decisions, using her heart as a weapon and trust as her shield. Many of the books i read I wonder "What was this girl like before she was a heartless killer? How did she get to that point?"

I always liked the before and after.

I still love the books where the girls wearing head to toe leather and have more knives on them than a culinary parade - but I'm always on the lookout for a strong, intelligent and witty lead who doesn't necessarily have to slay 30 men in the first 4 chapters.

Personally if I were a guy, I don't know if I'd want to hook up with the girl who might have a grenade in her panties.

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