Book BFF: Elisa from the Fire and Thorns series

Book BFF was created by Larks Andrea, Paula, and Jen to showcase some of our favorite ladies & was originally inspired by Book Boyfriend. We'd love it if you'd join us featuring your favorite Book BFFs and leaving links so we can check out your posts. We will be alternating between Book Boyfriends and Book BFFs on Thursdays. 

This week my Book BFF is Elisa from Rae Carson's Fire and Thorns series.
My ideal image of Elisa is a young Norah Jones.

Given name: Lucero-Elisa de Riqueza

Appearance: * on page 2, she describes herself as a big, bloated sausage. This description is no longer appropriate by the end of the book.
* beautiful eyes
* somewhat short

Facts about Elisa
* She is 16 years old
* She has a blue faceted Godstone in her navel, which marks her as God's chosen one who will carry out a specific special purpose
*She has an older sister
*She has spent much of her time while growing up studying religious texts and military tactics
*Her marriage to King Alejandro is a political tactic; they have never met before their wedding day
*She finds out that she is stronger, both mentally and physically, than she would have guessed

"I hear a thud against the wall near my head. The shining black point of an arrowhead pokes through, a mere handsbreadth from my nose. My skin burns. The air is too hot, too stifling to breathe. The Godstone in my navel flashes ice cold, and I gasp, astonished. It has never gone cold before." ~ The Girl of Fire and Thorns, page 29

"As I pass the collapsed carriage, I pull the knife from my bodice. I don't know what I'm going to do, but I can't let Alejandro die." ~ The Girl of Fire and Thorns, page 33 

"He gifts me with that easy smile of his, so familiar now, and so dear. Something unfurls inside of me, like a blooming sacrament rose. And I realize I love him." ~ The Girl of Fire and Thorns, page 328

Why she's my Book BFF: Elisa is my favorite example of a YA heroine who consciously chooses to stop letting others define her, and completely changes her situation by making better choices for herself. She is a shining example of what girls need to see in their books: a girl who can successfully balance taking care of herself with trusting others to help her appropriately. She is a woman of faith, but she also recognizes that texts are open to interpretation, making it necessary to listen to her gut. She listens, she observes, and she carefully crafts her words to communicate exactly what she needs them to. Elisa is smart in all the ways I admire most, and I aspire to be like her.