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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Which heroine turns the pages for you?

Last time I looked at the types of heroes available in romance books. Today I thought it'd only be fair to check out the different types of heroines* within those same pages.

A crusader with attitude
So, who belongs to the sisterhood?

Let's begin with the kick-ass heroine. She's the modern day super-hero, independent, tenacious and head strong. If there's trouble she's the one in the thick of it all, sorting it out, taking on the world (or enemies) with a never-say-die attitude. Don't get in her way.

A compassionate nurturer
The sister who compliments her is the optimist. Someone who listens, a compassionate, empathetic woman who takes care of others in a highly capable fashion. She takes her duties seriously.

A damsel in distress
The typical damsel in distress tends to endure any situation she finds herself in, hoping someone else will solve the problem or rescue her from trouble. She can be a little insecure and might even be a little child-like, definitely the girly-girl of the sisterhood.

A spunky spitfire
Opposite her is the gutsy, just-one-of-the-guys, don't-make-me-wear-a-frilly-dress heroine. She has lots of friends and tends to be supportive as well as the reliable one of the family.

I'm the boss
The heroine who likes to call the shots tends to take life a little too seriously. She's the work-aholic, competitive one with a boatload of confidence that can sometime come across as arrogance. Failure is not a word in her vocabulary and taking charge is an integral part of her nature.

A survivor to the core
Let's not forget the cynic of the sisterhood. She's the one who'll size up everyone in the room at a glance, has an in-built sense of distrust for everyone and everything. She can be a little mysterious or hides her softer side behind a tough exterior.

The understated siren
The prim and proper miss is our self sufficient heroine. She prefers to use her brains instead of her body to her advantage but underneath what can be a rather sensible or even mousy exterior beats the heart of a passionate woman just looking for the right man to bring it out in her.

A lovable spirit
The last heroine thinks with her heart instead of her head. She's the free spirited, playful, fun loving sister. Well intentioned, whimsical but may be seen as a bit of a ditz.

Long gone are the days when every heroine sits back and let's the hero rescue her or sweep her off her feet (she's still around, but now she's joined by a bevy of sisters with different qualities). Readers demand a heroine with flaws and strengths they can identify with.

Which sister do you like to see in the stories you read?

* Some "titles" for the heroines in this post taken from All About Romance website.


  1. You know, I really don't think of types when I read or write a book. To me it's all about character and whether their actions are 'real' for that book. So there's a place for all the sisters. :)

  2. Oh, great post Kylie.
    I don't really like insipid, 'can't do anything' heroines, so I'll probably go with the strong, tough, but fragile exterior heroine =)
    Like the ones with a little of everything too!

  3. Hi Kylie

    I love any type of heroine - if she suits the story and is written well. It makes for a great romance genre

  4. Definitely the kick ass heroine! Though I read a lot of UF, so that explains it. Though I really hate the damsel in distress hiding behind kick-ass clothes, if you get what I mean.

  5. Looks like a good story and believability dictate a reader's interest in a heroine, not so much the "type".

    Thanks for dropping in, girls!

  6. Great post Kylie - agree with all the comments but identify most strongly with the lovable spirit, I'm the boss and compassionate nurturer. Can see how it would be fun to create the others!

  7. Hey Cassandra, I'm going to guess you like the feel good movies and perhaps category romances?

  8. I love 'em all, as long as they grow and overcome. There are many kinds of strength and beauty. I find it annoying when only one kind of heroine, like the Kick-Butt, is considered cool and all the rest are considered weak and stupid.

  9. There's something that appeal to everyone in this list, although it does seem the kick-butt heroine seems to have gained popularity in recent years.

  10. Hi Kylie! Sorry I missed this. Well I love kick-butt girls, but they need to have a touch of a soft side too. Not so much that she's hiding behind the kick-butt premise! She still has to be a strong lead. And her character traits has to fit within the story and plot too.

    (I'm adding you to my list of blogs I visit, so I won't miss your posts. I thought you were there, but I guess not!

  11. Kaye, glad to have you following! Enjoy the reading!