January saw me diving into a Tamora Pierce spin. Though mostly based at the young adult market, I grew up with these books and I still like to dip into them. And by "dip into them" I mean re-read the whole lot in one go and obsessively read every new one I can find.
I love to watch the development of Pierce's prose style over the books, as well as the development of the worlds she creates, but it's her heroines that make her stand out from... just about every other author I know of who writes for YA. Each one is different - it's not just the same woman recycled over again; they are "strong" women, by which I mean they are well developed characters who can stand on their own two feet and provide wonderful role models for growing girls, but they aren't without their flaws. They are real people, who don't fit into little cliched boxes that a lot of fantasy writers seem to post women into. Her men are also real characters too, and she writes a wonderfully convincing and enthralling world that I want to go back to time and time again.
Terrier / Bloodhound / Mastiff - Tamora Pierce
Re-read / Re-read / ****
Song of the Lioness Quartet
Protector of the Small Quartet
Trickster's Choice / Trickster's Queen