Tuesday, October 21, 2014

My Kind of Heroine: Spunky, Clever, Brave by Beth Barany #Giveaway #yafantasy #amreading

Beth is sponsoring an ebook giveaway so be sure to comment for a chance to win one of her published titles!

I like heroines who are spunky, kind, and know how to have fun. I like the clever ones too. I just finished reading fantasy novel The Fall of Ventaris, book two in the series, by Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto, featuring Duchess of the Shallows, also the name of book one in the series. Duchess is clever, determined, and creative, and not afraid to take risks.

The heroines I admire come in several flavors. I like ordinary women who are gutsy and know what they want in their lives and go for it. Then during their ordinary life, they get surprised by love. They think they are so strong and tough, and can handle life by themselves. And they can, to an extent. But really, life is better together. Life is better with love. Yep, these are the kind of love stories I like to write. I have four of these romances in the form of sweet paranormal novellas in stand-alone books, yet are also a connected series. If you want to read them in order, here's the list:
  1. Touchstone of Love (July 2013)
  2. A Christmas Fling (December 2013)
  3. Parisian Amour (May 2014)
  4. A Labyrinth of Love and Roses (Sept 2014)
The list is here too: http://author.bethbarany.com/romance/.

I also write strong kick ass heroines for my YA (young adult) fantasy novels. My kind of heroine is Henrietta the Dragon Slayer: a former blacksmith’s apprentice and former army scout, at the young and jaded age of seventeen years old. Where my modern day heroines have a lot in common with me, visibly so, Henrietta leads a life I only know in my dreams. She's bold, fierce, a warrior, more likely to run toward a fight and win, than run away. She's initially a loner, because that was how she could survive. She's learned though about the power of friendship and now is faced with learning how to step up into a leadership position she's not sure she wants. She's seen lots of bad examples of leadership, from both men and women, in public and in private and doesn't want to be like those people.

Books 1 & 2 of the Five Kingdoms series are published, Henrietta The Dragon Slayer (Book 1) and Henrietta and the Dragon Stone (Book 2). I'm working on book 3, The Volcano Witch this fall. Also, the list is here: http://author.bethbarany.com/ya-fantasy/. Enjoy!

My kind of heroine isn't afraid to do what needs to be done, and still knows how to, or learns, how to, ask for help.

Some of my favorite spunky and clever heroines in fiction: Paksenarrion in Deeds of Paksenarrion series by Elizabeth Moon; Esmay Suiza in Once a Hero by Elizabeth Moon; Senneth in Mystic and Rider by Sharon Shinn; Meg in A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle.

What is your kind of heroine? What qualities or characteristics does she have? Comment below to win any one of my books, fantasy or romance, print or ebook for the fantasy, ebook only for the romance, international entries, yes. We’ll pick a winner at random soon.

My gift to you now!: Get a free copy the Very Short Prequel of Henrietta The Dragon Slayer here: http://author.bethbarany.com/contact-me/newsletter-sign-up/. You're signing up for my author newsletter. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Title: Henrietta and the Dragon Stone (Book 2 of the Five Kingdoms series)

Publisher: Firewolf Books

Date Published: January 29, 2014

Genre: young adult fantasy

Word Count: 86,000

What if all those you loved were threatened by a force you couldn't see or fight?

Henrietta the legendary ass kicking dragon slayer wants to return to her village for a heroes’ welcome. But an unknown sorcerer rides after her and her Dragon Stone, and aims to destroy everyone she cares about. Can she claim her newfound powers sparked by the Dragon Stone and keep her loved ones safe, especially her more-than-friend, and her stalwart bodyguard, before the sorcerer destroys her and everything in his path?

A medieval-set world with magic and magical creatures.


"Ambushes, magic, dragon stones, and mystery, a lot is afoot in Henrietta and the Dragon Stone... Henrietta is a wonderful role model as a heroine, as we watch and come along she grows from an unconfident girl to a more assured young woman." -- Chris

“…A real page turner and is apt to please anyone who loves young adult fantasy or adventure novels.” – Anonymous Reviewer

“…Strong writing and intense focus -- Beth Barany has stepped up her game in this one… no confusing parts and hits no false notes…” – Matt Posner

“…I found a real gem in this book with its magical world steeped in mystery, magic, and action… I highly recommend this book to those who appreciate a well written fantasy :)” – Merri House


The early morning dawn hovered as fog wrapped around the ancient castle. Henrietta hoofed it up a staircase to meet with the new king. She was impatient to set sail on the mid-morning tide.
Henrietta knocked and slipped into the room on the command to enter. She greeted Jaxter with a firm quick hug, then stepped back, waiting for him to speak. In the castle turret room, her good friend, Jaxter, now the new King Renaldo of the Oro Islands, sat in his raised chair, regarding her with a straight face.
She wanted to shift from foot to foot, but schooled her nervous energy. That wouldn’t do for her new role as Ambassador for King Renaldo’s kingdom. Even if, she guessed, it was just an honorary title to thank her for all she’d done.
A merchant class junk would sail in a few hours, and she’d be on it, heading home to the Kingdom of Bleuve—her home. The gyrating tide in Plumaria’s large harbor beckoned her. Plumaria was the colorful, bustling capital and only large city on the main island of this nation of one hundred-plus islands. She’d miss the place. Another time she’d have to come back to explore the islands, now that she wasn’t afraid anymore of water or boats.
Jaxter smiled, his expression tinged at the edges with sadness. He was hiding something from her.
“Sorry to summon you here so early. There is so much to do as I set the kingdom to rights, and I wanted to speak with you before you left―without all the eyes and ears scolding me ever so politely in my new role.”

Buy links:

Author Bio:
Award-winning author, Beth Barany has been making up fantasy and adventure stories all her life. She writes in two genres: young adult fantasy and sweet paranormal romance. She loves creating magical tales of romance and adventure to transport readers to new worlds where anything is possible.

In her off hours, Beth enjoys capoeira, reading and watching movies, and traveling, with her husband, author and singer/song writer Ezra Barany.

Beth Barany lives in Oakland, California with her husband, two cats, and over 1,000 books.


  1. Melissa, Thanks for having me as a guest on MY KIND OF HEROINE!

    1. Hi Beth,
      Welcome and it's great having you with us today. I also enjoy a spunky heroine but to me the most important quality is her ability to have caring/compassion for other people. :-)

  2. I'm delighted you're giving young women such positive role models