Hi friends, and happy Wednesday!
One of my favorite parts about book blogging, and forever will be, is connecting with other readers and gushing about some of our favorite fictional people and stories—as I’m sure a lot of you can relate. In the book blogging community, when I ramble about why this certain character stole my heart and why I would do anything to protect this fictional person
who (let’s face it) isn’t real, I’m not met with confused looks and awkwardly polite laughs and nodding heads, but rather “Oh my gosh. RIGHT?!? And that one part where the villain got a little too close for my comfort almost ended me right then and there!!”
I could talk about my favorite characters for hours, as if my life depends on it. Fictional characters always find a way to weasel themselves into our hearts, whether we invite them or not, and refuse to leave. It’s as if we have to scream from the rooftops so that everyone can hear about how fantastic they are.
Okay. So maybe that’s a bit of an overstatement and a tad dramatic, but I really am a big believer in that our favorite characters shape who we are. We either find this wonderful fictional human through a childhood favorite or a recent read; maybe we related to them in ways we haven’t related with anyone else, fictional or not, before; or maybe, just maybe, that character made us laugh when we needed it the most.
In the past, I’ve had the amazing opportunity to collaborate with some of my favorite book bloggers on questions like “Why is your favorite book your favorite?” and “Who is your favorite villain?” It only seemed fair to ask, “Who is one of your favorite characters?”
Personally, I could easily gush about Liam Michael Stewart from the Darkest Minds series for pages upon pages; it certainly wouldn’t be my first time doing so (in fact, you can read about why I love the Darkest Minds series so much here!). Or, I could ramble on about Nina Zenik from the Six of Crows duology and why her characterization and personality is so important to me.
But, instead of rehashing some of my usual favorites I’ve brought up countless times, I am more than willing and ecstatic to talk about one of my new favorites: Henry Strauss from The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue.
Henry is selfless, caring more about others than he could ever muster for himself. But, at the same time, the only thing he wants most in this world is to be liked by everyone. He spends his days working in a used bookstore, bundled up in dusty sweaters and keeping a close eye on the store cat. He’s a gentle listener, and always does what’s best for his friends—even if it’s the worst thing for him.
But, before I get too wrapped up in Henry Strauss (which is unavoidable, really), we have other fantastic characters to discuss!
Picking even just one of your favorite characters is no easy task, and I am so beyond thankful to each one of these bloggers for taking the time to be a part of this project. You guys are incredible! And please accept my apologies on the delay of this post!
Erin @ Rin’s Reads
A rather recent favorite of mine is Thomas Cresswell, from the Stalking Jack the Ripper series. I think part of the reason I loved him so much is because I was expecting something totally different, and was pleasantly surprised by him! Besides him being, you know, tall, dark and handsome, I really admired how he was able to show vulnerability towards those around him without feeling lesser because of it. The SJTR series is set back in the late 1800’s and has sort of a sub-plot around gender roles and how women and men are “supposed” to act in order to be accepted in society. It was refreshing to see a man who wasn’t afraid to, well, be afraid! His wit and one-liners also just had me cracking up – I can’t wait to reread this series and fall in love with him all over again!
Margaret @ Weird Zeal
Well, this is an impossible question to answer, and I probably changed my mind at least a half dozen times. But I’ve decided at last, and today I really just want to talk about Simon Spier from Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli.
The first time I met Simon, I was eighteen and couldn’t remember the last time I had truly loved a book. But I devoured his in less than a day over Thanksgiving break and thus discovered one of the best boys in the literary world. We’ve now gotten four books with Simon (if you include his tiny cameo in The Upside of Unrequited), and every time he shows up, I find myself smiling so hard.
Simon is an absolute sweetheart who is constantly, hilariously oblivious about what’s going on around him, while also having such a thoughtful and compassionate perspective on everything. I especially love reading his POV, since seeing the world through his eyes is so lovely. Plus, he’s SUCH a dork, and I think of him every time I use the word “freaking.” I just have so much love for this boy! I know there’s not going to be any more books in the Simonverse, which makes me sad because I miss him. But he’ll always have a little piece of my heart and be a safe place to return whenever I need him.
Sofii @ A Book. A Thought.
Choosing a favorite character is like choosing a fave among your children, right? so it’s super difficult! I always choose Magnus Bane from The Shadowhunters world, because I love him with my soul, but this time I want to make room for another of my babies and she’s Laia from An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir.
The reason why Laia is one of my favorites is because of her great growth throughout each book. I really like that she begins as an average girl who then must become strong and become a warrior for the love of her brother and her family. And then she gets super involved in a much bigger battle that involves an entire empire. I think she shows an incredible evolution of a character where we see her become a very powerful woman, with a lot of willpower, a lot of passion, and above all, a lot of bravery and courage—to be able to have a second chase in a violent world where war is the central point. I’m always very proud of her for all that she has been able to achieve with so few resources around her. She has experienced terrible losses, she has witnessed heartbreaking moments and has survived all of it, and above all, I admire how her experiences haven’t changed her empathy for others, which is great. She’s just AMAZING.
And I can’t help but suggest you read An Ember in the Ashes if you haven’t read it yet; it’s a WONDERFUL book, SO worth it. The fourth book in the series is released this December 1st, so it’s the perfect time to read it and be part of this super moving fantasy story full of amazing characters.
Cherelle @ Cherelle the Bibliophile
She is independent. She has all the sass. She is a mechanic. Her best friend is an android, and she is kind of a robot herself too.
She is Cinder, our favourite cyborg from The Lunar Chronicles.
Apart from Cinder’s sass with her witty comebacks, her courage and loyalty, why Cinder is one of those book characters I hold dear to my heart… is because of her vulnerability and how she deals with it.
As the story goes, Cinder submits to her stepmother, all her efforts channelled to allowing her stepmother and stepsisters to live a frivolous, pampered life… while she rots away at the side. Simply because she is 36% cyborg. And people have a huge prejudice towards cyborgs.
This is a huge factor in Cinder’s self-identity. At first, she was just a cyborg, a freak. Meant to be discriminated and be unnoticed. And then, she meets Prince Kaito. Thereafter, she discovers a life-changing truth about herself, an identity that came with huge responsibility and prominence. Throughout the series, Cinder’s struggle with all 3 juxtaposing identities is very real… she experiences many moments of self-doubt, many times of huge pressure and many instances of breaking down. How she deals with it, and harnesses the support of the people around her, and lives up to her role is just so empowering. This reason, among many others, tethered Cinder to my heart, being an inspiring character I look up to.
Another huge thank you to these amazing bloggers for taking the time out of their day to answer the impossible question I threw at them. I loved reading about each of your favorite characters and learning more about the why behind that choice—I am forever grateful to each of you!