Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Minor Characters

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join.

This week, we were asked to revisit any previous topic.  The archives turned up a question about our ten favorite minor characters, so here we go!

1. Rue from “The Hunger Games.” I know, I know, Rue exists to be loved.  Well, I love her.  Collins made her vulnerable, but not pitiful.

2. Cinna from “The Hunger Games.”  Cinna connects with seemingly connection-proof Katniss and provides her with a much-needed reason to survive the Games – and to keep fighting afterwards.

3. Jean Lafitte from “Zorro.” The gentlemanly pirate plays a significant role in the last third of the book, and his swashbuckling nature puts the final flourishes on young Zorro’s persona.

4. Katharina from “The Second Duchess.” Barbara is an imperial princess and duchess, which means that in spite of all her wealth and power, she has few friends, and even fewer people she can actually trust. Katharina provides a rock for our heroine to cling to during her harrowing investigation, and her being in danger provides a catalyst for one of Barbara’s most difficult decisions.

5. Liraz from “Daughter of Smoke & Bone/Days of Blood & Starlight.” Liraz is one of very few female angel warriors, and she has all kinds of issues resulting from that.  Her mix of outward arrogance and internal anxiety make her one of the most interesting characters in the trilogy so far.

6. Samuel Hamilton from “East of Eden.” He’s a major figure in the first third or so of the book, but it’s a big book with a big cast, and his presence fades once the next generation is born.  Despite the sprawling story and Samuel’s eventual death, all of them experience his legacy of love and forgiveness.

7. Hana from “Delirium.” Hana and Lena went on opposing character arcs, with Lena starting off as “the good girl,” while Hana was sneaking off to illegal parties.  Then Lena fell in love and turned a little wild, while Hana took on a lifestyle more suited to the future wife of the future mayor.  Once their eighteenth birthdays arrived, their lives became completely different.  Apparently Hana is a POV character in “Requiem,” which should be interesting.

8. Aberforth Dumbledore from “Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows.” For all his cynicism, Aberforth is as much a good guy as his more famous brother.

9. Tonks from “Harry Potter.” I always thought Tonks was Rowling’s gift to her slightly older (and/or more punk) female fans, providing us with an alternative role model to Hermione.  Tonks could change her hair color whenever she wanted, she got along with everybody in spite of her occasional spikiness (“Don’t call me Nymphadora!”), and she was a talented fighter.  I still kinda want to be Tonks.

10. Mr. Bennet from “Pride & Prejudice.”  Forget the romance – the real reason to read “P&P” is for the long-suffering patriarch’s snarky dialogue.  Almost all of my favorite lines are his!

Who would you add to this list?

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9 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Minor Characters

  1. Great list! Rue immediately sprung to my mind, too. I don’t know how anyone could dislike her! Tonks and Mr. Bennet are especially great choices, too. I love the breadth and depth of your reading!

    My TTT list, featuring the books I recommend the most, is over at Bookwanderer!

  2. Cinna is a great character and Mr. Bennett has some of the best lines. I like St. John Rivers in Jane Eyre too as a supporting character (not in a romantic sense for Jane). I always liked Sirius in Harry Potter and was crushed by his fate!

  3. I tend to fall in love with ancillary characters really easily–maybe because they leave more to the imagination and have fewer pages to get on my nerves! I’ve been listening to the audiobook of The Scorpio Races, and Finn cracks me up. (Why are there so many characters in YA these days named Finn, though?! I don’t understand it.) Also best-friend types in contemporary YA tend to be a lot of fun, like Sam from Holly Black’s Curse Worker books. Aaaand, of course, animal-companion characters are always a favorite of mine, although in some series they’d be stretching the definition of “minor” (like the Disreputable Dog in Lirael…)

    • Also, I’m sorry about some of the repetitive comments I leave around here–you’d think I’d only read twenty books in my lifetime. Most of them just fly out of my head when I try to think about it on the spot, though, which I guess says something about my memory.

      • Totally okay – most of my lists are the same way. And that’s even with Goodreads to help me remember what I read beyond the last book.

    • Ooh, I’ve heard good things about Scorpio Races. And I’ve got to re-read the other two “Sabriel” books – I read “Sabriel” recently, but I remember being so irritated that the second book wasn’t about her anymore. I’m sure they were perfectly good books, I just hated that it skipped over all of Sabriel & Touchstone’s courtship.

      I like the minor characters, too, especially the ones who turn up randomly, have a huge impact on the story, and vanish again. Both Isabel Allende and Haruki Murakami (and Gabriel Garcia Marquez, now that I think about it) have a gift for making extremely detailed minor characters to spice up their books. (Too bad the rest of Murakami’s writing drove me nuts.)

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