This months topic for Monthly Recommendations is empowering female leads and immediately I think of like five or six characters like Hermione or Annabeth but as always I'm not going to recommend the most obvious books.
First book I want to recommend is actually a historic series called Wars of the Roses by Conn Iggulden. The series tells the story of the English royal houses Lancaster and York that were fighting for the crown for decades. One of the main characters is Queen Margaret of Anjou, a French nobel girl who is married to king Henry VI in the first book of the series. Henry VI is sickly and weak so Margaret must be strong for both of them and the royal house and she is very good at managing the kingdom while her husband is not able to.
Another series with strong female leads is the Wolves of Mercy Falls, also know as the Shivers trilogy, by Maggie Stiefvater. She is probably more known for the Raven cycle these days but I love this series and how its female leads Grace and Isabel are so different but still fight for the same things.
I don't know if the main character in the next book is strictly speaking empowering but I find her strong in her own way, though she is more Donald Duck-y, of out of the frying pan, into the fire type of character. I'm talking about Stephanie Plum of the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich, an amateur bounty hunter. I laugh out laud when reading her adventures trying to earn her living but even if times get tough she never quits.
Finally I think at this point almost everyone has heard of Game of Thrones but only a few people have actually read A Song of Ice and Fire series by G.R.R. Martin which is a shame. The series is well-written and the world is enchanting with all the detail. Martin has made many good female characters and is indeed praised for it. I feel like everyone can find a character they identify with since there are so many. My favorites are Arya, Sansa and Catelyn, but other people might like Cersei or Daenerys better. Anyway all of these characters are strong and get even stronger the further they go.