It has been a while since a book blew me away the way Shantaram did. Don't ask what it is about or read the synopsis or check to see what other people are saying. Just do yourself a favor, read the first chapter and see if you can't put it down.
This list is a far from complete list of some of my favorites - they are warriors, scholars, mothers, daughters; they can be wildly in love and impressively practical; they are a little too perfect and incredibly flawed. Most of them have happy endings, some of them don't. In an nutshell - these are girls who act like girls should and must.