I designed Lantamyra to be a woman’s world, where females control most of the power. They undergo the process of mind expansion using myra crystals and are granted power because females are less likely to be corrupted by it.
The Liveship Traders series (‘Ship of Magic’, ‘The Mad Ship’ and ‘Ship of Destiny’) is set in the fantasy world of Robin Hobb’s The Farseer trilogy.
The Liveship Traders books feature engrossing and varied protaganists, most notably the female members of the Vestrit Trader family. Robin Hobb depicts a society that has become rigid with gender roles and increasingly tolerant of slavery, then populates this society with strong-willed characters who defy expectations and thwart their fates.
The protagonist in this book had a rough start as an orphan abused in a nunnery. Her tough-love father returns for her when she is eight years old. They both work for royals who use them. Despite this, Reveka holds no grudges, tries to do the right thing and works towards her impossible dream of becoming an herbalist. When a curse on the princesses of the castle starts hurting everyone, and the prize for breaking the curse would let her become an herbalist, she cleverly and sneakily takes matters into her own hands.
The most feminist aspects of this book are rather subtle. Reveka criticizes the status quo. She thinks of everyone’s well-being rather than trying to follow the rules. She is chastises the princesses for being selfish and using religious superstition as justification for letting others get hurt. There are no obvious male romantic interests. She admits to small attractions to a young boy and an older man, but those feelings are brushed aside in favor of practical matters. Reveka is even outraged by her father’s ridiculous love interest. This hero exhibits great critical thinking, independence and empathy.
Throughout the whole Sunrunner series, the reader can watch Sioned grow into a powerful sorceress and politician. She is also ruthless, but loyal, in her adoption of a child sired by violent means when she discovers she cannot have children of her own. The series is also populated with a variety of female characters that run the gamut of female experience, including battle hardened warriors, magicians, shades-of-grey leaders, and powerful political opponents.