Following on from our recent post featuring diverse reads, we thought we’d delve into another favourite of ours – favourite fictional female friendships (that’s a lot of Fs.) We’ve chosen some that, in canon, are platonic and between women who have healthy friendships, especially not based upon their relationship with a man. Let’s just say these all pass the Bechdel Test and are the epitome of squad goals. We hate seeing female characters who only exist to belittle each other and see each other as nothing more than competition. Here’s to many more women finding comfort in each other, both in fiction and reality.
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
‘Verity’ and Maddie
This book is a historical fiction novel set during World War II and it follows two best friends as they crash land in a Nazi-occupied France. Maddie was the pilot who must now do what it takes to survive and ‘Verity’ is taken prisoner, knowing that her fate is sealed and all she can do is tell her story. Their friendship was a bright light in this heartbreaking novel as Verity tells us the story of how they met all the way to the last time they see each other. Until the end, they are two girls with a strong bond whose only aim is to save each other.
Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas
Manon Blackbeak & Asterin Blackbeak
We first meet Manon and Asterin in the third book of the Throne of Glass series, Heir of Fire, and they definitely became fast favourites of mine. Manon is the heir to the Blackbeak witch clan and leader of the Thirteen, and Asterin is her cousin and second in command. The two have their differences and arguments, but Asterin’s loyalty to and belief in Manon cannot be shaken, and when Manon realises the extent that Asterin has protected her over the years, she literally sacrifices everything for her cousin. These two will do anything for the other, no matter what personal sacrifices it takes. 100% family goals.
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Nina Zenik & Inej Ghafa
Not only are these girls amazing in their own way, they also have the cutest and most beautiful friendship. Throughout both books, they look out for each other, tend to each other’s wounds and protect each other. Being the only two females in the Dregs, they often stand up for each other against the boys and take zero shit from them which lifts me up where I belong. I can just picture these girls meeting up regularly for waffles and moaning about Kaz but although they’re cute, they could kill you in a blink. Literally.
Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin
Yael & ‘Comrade Mnogolikiy’
I won’t say much about these two (and am purposefully using an army code name from the book) to avoid spoilers, but let’s just say that Comrade Mnogolikiy has been watching over Yael for a long time, and Yael doesn’t quite realise just everything that she’s gone through to protect her. When these two are reunited, they are an unstoppable force, and have the most perfect sister-like friendship. These girls could destroy the Third Reich of this duology together, their bond is so strong.
The Spinster Club Series by Holly Bourne
The Spinster Girls
This series features three main books (and more recently, a 3.5) focusing on three girls – Evie, Lottie and Amber. These three women are the queens of friendship, feminism and cheesy snacks. Each book is centred around their stories – Evie struggling with mental illness, Amber struggling with family problems and Lottie starting a war against sexism. They help each other through everything, they support each other and they’re bloody hilarious. They still manage to have romantic relationships on the side but it never gets in the way of their friendship which they always put first. We still need a petition for this series to be compulsory reading in secondary schools.
The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater
The Women of 300 Fox Way
We can definitely say that the main friendship in this series is the Gangsey, however, the relationship between the psychics in 300 Fox Way is just as important. Blue, Maura, Calla, Persephone, Jimi and Orla. Some of my favourite scenes in this series was the moments of domesticity between these women – they all had their little oddities and their little skills and of course there was bickering but there is a huge respect for one another. It made me so happy that Blue grew up in a house full of women and you can definitely see how they have influenced her.
A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers
Owl & Pepper
A beautiful friendship turned mother-daughter bond between Jayne 23/Pepper, a young girl raised by AIs with no idea of real life and Owl, a computer-programmed AI who becomes a guide, friend and mother to a little girl who stumbles upon her ship. The two form a bond that lasts a lifetime and even when Owl is seemingly lost, Pepper doesn’t stop to find and restore her. Owl teaches Pepper everything, from how to eat and how to speak and essentially raises her and in return, Pepper shows Owl love no AI is used to. They save each other.
The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis
Alex & Peekay
This was one of my favourite reads of 2016 and a real stand-out was the friendship between Alex, a girl with murderous tendencies and Peekay, nicknamed for being the Preacher’s Kid. They meet volunteering at an animal shelter and despite being very different people, immediately form a close bond. Peekay brings out the softer side to Alex and in return, Alex teaches Peekay confidence, especially in standing up to the opposite sex. Definitely one of my favourite female friendships in contemporary fiction.
A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin
Daenerys & Missandei
When making this list, we thought there must be a lot of female friendships in such a big series but unfortunately, there is not apart from these girls. Daenerys struggled to find and keep allies throughout the A Song of Ice and Fire series, but the one person she can always rely on is Missandei. The two first meet in A Storm of Swords, when Missandei is gifted to Daenerys by a slave trader. Daenerys immediately offers Missandei her freedom, which I suppose is a good way to begin a friendship. Although Missandei is no longer a slave, she chooses to stay with Daenerys as a close adviser to her, and soon becomes one of her closest confidantes. “All men must die, but we are not men.”
Are there any female friendships in fiction that really stood out to you? Let us know in the comments!Love,