Is there such a term - the female equivalent of the anti-hero? I'm looking for books where the female protagonist has a strong character that is not necessarily likeable, but admirable in her determination/ambition/independence, etc. Cathy in Wuthering Heights, Becky Sharp in Vanity Fair, and Scarlet O'Hara in Gone With The Wind are all what I would consider to be 'anti-heroines'. Redemption and/or 'punishment' at the end of the story is fine, but I am thinking of the really unconventional women in fiction - manipulative, sharp, promiscuous (if needs be), untameable - and not the stock characters rolled out in most romantic fiction, say, where the 'feisty' heroine is shown the error of her ways by an alpha-male and a brood of kids.
Any recommendations will be deeply appreciated! Any genre welcome, but my taste runs more to historical fiction. (Fingers crossed!)