Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Favorite Characters - Part the Second

I started a chronicle of my favorite characters last week, and I'm continuing that little journey today. And some new characters have made their way into the mix this past week. I'm certain you won't be that surprised.

Photo Credit 

A two-fer here: Jamie and Claire from Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. I realize I started this whole thing with secondary characters, which would, in theory, make my fave character choices a little bit more diverse or off the beaten path. Screw that. I met Jamie and Claire this past week during my first reading of Outlander and they won me over. I had to include them here. Most of you probably know the reasons, so I'll just leave it at the pic. So funny.


Osceola (Ossie) Bigtree from Swamplandia! by Karen Russell. There are a lot of interesting, memorable characters in this book, but Ossie stuck out to me. There was most certainly a shroud of mystery around her--even moreso than the other characters--because she fancies herself a Spiritualist. Even runs away with a ghost. Ossie was absent for large portions of the book, but her enigma hung over much of the narrative. I wanted to learn more about her!


The "ghost" from The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters. This was one of my very favorite books I read last year, and another chunky monkey that pulled me in completely -- to the point I wanted it to last much longer than it did. While it's never proven whether there's really a ghost haunting Hundreds Hall or if it's imagined by the nutty residents, it's a ripping good ride. That ghost sure has a sick sense of humor.


Dr. Annick Swenson from State of Wonder by Ann Patchett. What a biatch. Seriously. But she's oddly twisted and sympathetic and brilliant all at the same time. It's hard to say whether Dr. Swenson is a martyr or a purely villainous, selfish wench. Oy! I love characters I don't quite know what to do with.


The woman and Thorsteinn from "A Stone Woman" by A.S. Byatt. This is one of the most memorable stories from Little Black Book of Short Stories. Another couple of short story characters! Yay! "A Stone Woman" is really a haunting mythological tale tied to the oral tradition of Iceland. The nameless woman begins to turn to stone after her mother's death. Thorsteinn helps her find her way.

And there you have it! Some of my favorite characters, many of whom I've "met" in the last year of my reading. Going back over my reading and thinking about these characters brings back so many memorable, wonderful stories. I highly recommend each and every one.

9 comments:

  1. I haven't read any of these books, but I own several of them! Good to know there are some awesome characters in my future.

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    1. Good deal, Brooke! I hope you have good luck with them!

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  2. I admit that I am slightly overwhelmed by your love for Claire and Jamie. This may be because I tried to read Outlander when I was a wee lass in college, and just could NOT get past the dialect. I dunna why. But I just could not take anyone seriously. A character flaw on my part, I think.

    That said, now I want nothing more than to sit down and read The Little Stranger. Or, at least, the only other Sarah Waters book I have, The Night Watch.

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    1. Aarti, I was afraid the dialect would be difficult for me, but it wasn't so much when I got hooked. And I hope you have an opportunity to read The Little Stranger. SUCH a great book. I have every intention of reading all her books. I have Tipping the Velvet on my shelves now.

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  3. I am listening to Swamplandia right now, and am not quite sure what to make of it. Granted, I am still in the beginning sections, but I am wondering where all this is going. Ossie is a very interesting girl, that's for sure! I am also loving all the Jamie and Claire talk! My husband is so funny, every now and then he will ask me how Jaime and Claire are doing, since I pick up the books and flip through them regularly. I find it funny that he knows them by name and has never read the books!

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  4. Heather, it gets better. It is an odd sort of book, but by the end I found it had some purpose and definitely some interesting/troubling/discussionworthy parts. I hope it pans out well for you.

    And yes, I think I'll be a chronic Outlander flipper for a very long time. I have about 300 pages of DRAGONFLY IN AMBER left (probably finish tomorrow), and I am pretty sure I'll jump straight into VOYAGER. We'll see!

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  5. You're bringing back memories for me! I wasn't a fan of Outlander and the word "Sassenach" brings back all those annoyances I had. Glaad you're enjoying it, but I hope I never reaad the word again!

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  6. I'm hoping to read The Little Stranger this month! I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed it so much. It will be my 2nd book by this author and I have high hopes. In fact, I believe that I tried her last year because of your Affinity readalong :) So thanks for that!

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  7. Sadly, I don't have any first hand reading experience with these characters but now you are making me want to read the associated books even more!

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