Here’s a post by Sam Maggs at tor.com that caught my eye for a couple of reasons.
a) The title is “Five Books About Kick-Ass Chicks in Space,” but
b) Maggs immediately shifts from “kick-ass” and “strong” to “complex.”
What’s better than a book with a complex female protagonist? I’ll tell you what’s better: a book with a complex female protagonist in space.
I am actually perfectly fine with any complex, well-written protagonist — female, male, or something else — but I definitely do prefer the term “complex” when applied to protagonists, versus “strong” or “kick-ass.” Not every female (or male!) protagonist needs to be great at physical battle! It’s fine if they’re not!
Ahem, well, anyway, that’s a fine topic for a post, but what particularly made me want to mention this post is this bit:
Easily my favorite book of 2015, Chambers’ debut novel [A Long Way to a Small Angry Planet] is equal parts Firefly and Mass Effect, a perfect combination. On the run from her past, Rosemary joins a rag-tag space crew on their wormhole-tunneling ship as their on-board accountant – but life catches up quick in the darkness. With a diverse cast of fully-realized characters (human, alien, and robot alike), it’s hard to not fall in love with every single member of the Wayfarer. The follow-up, A Closed and Common Orbit, is out this month, and it will break your heart. I know you’re into that.
See there? A sequel. Yay! I knew Chambers had a sequel coming along, but I had no idea it was coming out so soon.
It probably won’t surprise any of you that this sequel focuses on Lovelace:
Lovelace was once merely a ship’s artificial intelligence. When she wakes up in a new body, following a total system shut-down and reboot, she has no memory of what came before. As Lovelace learns to negotiate the universe and discover who she is, she makes friends with Pepper, an excitable engineer, who’s determined to help her learn and grow.
Together, Pepper and Lovey will discover that no matter how vast space is, two people can fill it together.
Sounds good — well, at least, I doubt this would sound like my kind of thing except I really loved the first book. I’m looking forward to this sequel.
Some of the other books mentioned in the post sound good too, especially Gilman’s Dark Orbit: “…a fascinating look at how a truly alien culture might evolve, both sociologically and biologically.” Doesn’t that sound promising?
Okay, while we’re on the subject of SF featuring female protagonists in space: Off the top of my head, I think my pick for this category might be Hunting Party by Elizabeth Moon.
How about you all? Got a pick for a novel with spaceships and a woman protagonist?