May 31, 2012

the.book.chat. {favorite female of fiction}


Happy Book Chat Thursday!

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Choosing a female character was a bit trickier than choosing a male.  As I went through my stock pile of read books, there weren't many characters sticking out to me.  I think this is mainly because many novels I read are told through the perspective of the story's heroine. Therefore, she is the medium that bridges the reader to the story.  We don't read about them, we become them in a sense.  Especially in YA lit, I feel that many of the characters just blend together in my memory.  They each might have their own individual quirks, but they don't stand out as memorable characters.  First person narrative is great for bringing the reader in, but you lose a little bit of the narrator's character that way.

As I found characters that I wanted to talk about, I noticed a trend.  There are four main groups of female characters that I appreciate...


Dystopian heroine:
Gaia Stone of Birthmarked series by Caraugh O'Brien
I worship Gaia for her headstrong'ness.


Katniss Everdeen of The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins
The girl on fire...how could I not include her?

Offred of The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
The voice of reason in a world that's gone completely nuts.

Lena Halloway of the Delirium series by Lauren Oliver
Watching her transform in to a heroine is the best part of this series.

"You can build walls all the way to the sky and I will find a way to fly above them. You can try to pin me down with a hundred thousand arms, but I will find a way to resist." 
           -Delirium by Lauren Oliver


Warrior goddess:
MacKayla Lane of the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning
Four whole books of kicking ass and taking names.

Katsa & Fire of Kristen Cashore's novels Graceling and Fire
Cashore wins the prize for creating powerful warrior females who are still lovable and sweet.  



Marches to the beat of her own drummer:
Lisbeth Salander of the Millennium series by Stieg Larsson
I refuse to believe she doesn't exist in real life.  You can't make this stuff up.


Elizabeth Bennett of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
No one breaks societal molds like her.

Hazel Grace Lancaster of A Fault in our Stars by John Green
If sarcasm were an Olympic sport, the gold would go to Hazel.

“Follies and nonsense, whims and inconsistencies do divert me, I own, and I laugh at them whenever I can.” 
-Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen


War torn heroines:
Claire Fraser of the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon
This woman doesn't have a timid bone in her body.


Liesel Memminger of The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
Even Death appreciated her awesomeness.  

Ophelia of Hamlet by William Shakespeare
I have been a little bit obsessed with Ophelia since before high school.  I can recite most of her lines and took far too much pleasure in writing painfully long papers about her in college.  



These characters all portray characteristics that I wish I had and/or strive to be more like.  They are strong and powerful despite oppression and stereotypes.  They are not afraid to stand out in a crowd.  They work to change things that need to be changed.  They are cynical and stubborn.  They don't aim to please just for the sake of pleasing and they don't change themselves for anyone.  They are passionate and love entirely.

I realize now that these characters don't stand out in my mind because they are more than just characters to me.  They have contributed something to who I am.  I have become a little more like each of them from reading their stories.
It's good to be a girl.

I hope you guys had as much fun with this prompt as I did.  I can't wait to see what you have!  Link up below.


Important news about next week:
As many of you know, I will be out of town next week so my sweet friend Melissa has offered to guest host The Book Chat for me.  You will just write up your post as usual but the link-up will be on her blog instead of mine.  Don't worry too much...if you come here next Thursday, I will have a link leading you to the right place.  Thanks so much Melissa!


Okay for the prompt: Was there a book that you loved but didn't expect to?  Or maybe one that you did expect to love, but were disappointed.



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5 comments:

threetimesf said...

Great list again! I love the Bennett sisters! Such a strong group of women for a book written that long ago - they defy everything!
In case I haven't said before - I love the book chat! :) ps - notice how Hermione didn't make it in this week (although I do love her) so no HP!!! I hope you're proud ;)

Sweet Green Tangerine said...

I'm so glad you like the book chat! I think it really brings out the bookworm in all of us.

Katie Price said...

Such a good point that reading books from the first person makes you feel like You are the character, so it's harder to really separate the two. Although I must say that I really do like reading books that are written in first person, even from a male perspective.

I didn't write a post this week, but I would have to say that some of my favorite female characters stem from the women in the old testament of the Bible. There is a great series by Orson Scott Card called Women of Genesis. These aren't "religious" books by any means, but more like secular stories of the women based on the historical documentation. I'm drawn to the history there & rich lessons that these women have to teach. Women in the past had to put up with so much male 'power' (or lack of a better word) and had to be strong in their own ways. It's inspiring to me.

Megan C. Stroup said...

Like the comment about me said, I really liked your observation about becoming a narrator instead of reading about her. I've never thought of that before. Also, I think I'm on your team: Lisbeth is based on a real person. Let's find her! Haha. Thanks for another great book chat, as always. :)

P.S. — I noticed you have my button on your sidebar, so 1) Thanks! and 2) I've added you to mine as well! :)

melissa said...

Haha you were NOT kidding when you said you had a huge list of characters!! Of the books I've read from the ones you mentioned, I have to admit that Lena from Delirium is in some of my favorites as well. Katniss was 99% going to be on my list because she literally changed the way I see teen books... But Mockingjay really ruined her for me. I hated the character she became. I hoped SO much that she could continue to be the strong young lady she was in the first two books! Ah well. If I had made my list longer, I'm sure both of them would have made it on there, but I also wouldn't have been able to stop myself & would have had a list of like 50 heroines that I just love LOL.

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