Scarlett O’Hara – Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Gone With The Wind is one of my all-time favorite books (the only book I have read four times) and I often get into debates with my fellow romance readers/authors about Scarlett’s strength. Some find her too whiny and needy but, for me, she shows rather than verbalizes her strength. She overcomes horrors and difficulties that most of us (fortunately!) will only find in the pages of this wonderfully epic novel.
2) Eve Dallas – In Death series by Nora Roberts
Lord, how I love Eve! If you haven’t tried the In Death series yet, make it your mission to start reading this amazing series this year. The books centre around Lieutenant Eve Dallas and her ongoing relationship with millionaire, Roarke (not sure if anyone knows if this is his first name or surname!) Each novel brings a new case for Eve to solve and usually involves Roarke or someone else she is close to in one way or another. There are a whopping 47 novels so far in the series…
3) Elizabeth Bennett – Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
I don’t know a romance reader on the planet who hasn’t read Pride & Prejudice and, for me, it’s Elizabeth Bennett’s strength, integrity and passion which makes this novel continue to sell year after year. A timeless romance, hero and heroine that I predict will live in our hearts and the hearts of future generations for many years to come.
4) Josie O’Casey – A Glimpse At Happiness by Jean Fullerton
A Glimpse At Happiness is one of my most favorite Victorian romances and the reason I started to write in the genre. Josie O’Casey is a wonderful example of what makes a strong heroine and how they overcome the poverty of their circumstances. This book is about love over adversity, hope over pessimism. A truly gorgeous book and a truly fantastic heroine.
5) Lucky Santangelo – Jackie Collins
Although Jackie Collins’ books aren’t strictly romance, there is usually a central relationship in her super-sexy stories. I discovered the first book Lucky appears in (Chances) when I was barely into my teens and went on to devour all the books she’s featured in thereafter. A strong, feisty, no holds barred, kind of heroine who demands your attention from the very first page. Tremendous!