If you like a mix of fantasy, romance, female leads...

A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray
"After the suspicious death of her mother in 1895, sixteen-year-old
Gemma returns to England, after many years in India, to attend a
finishing school where she becomes aware of her magical powers and
ability to see into the spirit world." (Catalog Summary)

From the Ashes by Meghan Brunner.
"Do you believe in magick? More than a picture you once saw of a place
you've never visited? More than the idle wish you'd like to see come
true? Ryna does. But then, she's grown up among the culture of
Renaissance fairies, where "fantasy" and "reality" share more than a
handshake's acquaintance and "impossible" is not a word often used. Bea
doesn't. But with a little help from karma, she's about to discover the
world within that picture ... and herself. For, during the seven-week
run of Pendragon Renaissance Faire, anything is possible ... magick,
heartbreak, joy, hatred, true love, true evil ... anything." (Cover)

Ill Wind by Rachel Caine
"Joanne Baldwin is a Weather Warden. Usually, all it takes is a wave of
her hand to tame the most violent weather, but now, she's trying to
outrun another kind of storm: accusations of corruption and murder. So,
she's resorting to the very human tactic of running for her life."
(Catalog Summary)

The Night Drifter by Susan Carroll.
"A young widow struggles to summon the magical forces that will enable
her to save her new love, a Cornish nobleman who roams the night in
spirit form, from a shadowy enemy." (Catalog Summary)

Lady Robyn by R. Garcia y Robertson
"Robyn Stafford, a young American woman swept back in time to the 1460s
England, finds her fantasy of courtly romance comes up against the
politics of murder, warfare, and betrayal." (Catalog Summary)

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
"This best-selling novel of time travel fuses the drama, passion, and
violence of 18th-century Scotland with a wry, modern sensibility, as
Gabaldon tells the story of one daring woman and the man who loves her."
(Catalog Summary)

The Dragon of Despair by Jane M. Lindskold
"Raised far from humans by intelligent, language-using wolves, then
brought back to the court of Hawk Haven, Firekeeper has had to learn to
cope with human society. And as it turns out, for one raised among
intelligent social carnivores, the intrigues of the human pack aren't
all that unfamiliar. Now Melina Shield, the beautiful, unscrupulous,
and thoroughly discredited sorceress whose power-hungry intrigues have
already made so much trouble for Firekeeper, is once again using her
power to cloud men's minds. ... Melina has never abandoned her schemes
to gain power through the use of forbidden ancient sorcery. And the
leaders of the royal beasts who watch over this world have given
Firekeeper - and her intelligent wolf companion, Blind Seer - the
responsibility of stopping her." (From the Publisher)

Sorcery and Cecelia, or, The Enchanted Chocolate Pot: Being the
Correspondence of Two Young Ladies of Quality Regarding Various Magical
Scandals in London and the Country by Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline
Stevermer.
"In 1817 in England, two young cousins, Cecilia living in the country
and Kate in London, write letters to keep each other informed of their
exploits, which take a sinister turn when they find themselves
confronted by evil wizards." (Catalog Summary)


A co-worker recommends these titles "that have great characters and a
strong female lead. These are the first books in their series.":

Rhapsody: Child of Blood by Elizabeth Haydon. Thrown into the past for a
brief moment, Gwydion falls in love with a young woman named Emily only
to lose her when he returns abruptly to his own time. In a parallel
story, a true bard named Rhapsody travels through time to a distant
future, where she uncovers a conspiracy of evil with its roots in a past
now lost to her forever. (Library Journal)

Dragonsong by Anne McCaffrey. Forbidden by her father to indulge in
music in any way, a girl on the planet Pern runs away, taking shelter
with the planet's fire lizards who, along with her music, open a new
life for her. (Catalog Summary)

Green Rider by Kristen Britain. A fantasy in which, after being expelled
from school, spoilt Karigan G'ladheon meets a rider dying from an arrow
wound who gives her a magic brooch and a message for his king. So begins
a life of adventure which transforms Karigan into an exemplary heroine.
(Catalog summary)

I hope you enjoy these titles as much as "Fantasy Life"! Please let me
know if we can help you find other good books to read!

Yours,
Mary M. Buck