top 5 wednesday | may 24

I’m back again for another Top 5 Wednesday!

Top 5 Wednesday is run by Sam thoughtsontomes. Check out the Goodreads group if you’re interested in learning more or joining in on the fun!

Today’s prompt: Favorite Minor Characters

Note that today is all about minor characters and not side characters. So I’ll be talking about those characters who only make a small appearance in the book but are still named and important–and whom I love very much despite their minimal screen time.

Let’s get into it!

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1. Dobby from the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

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art by zquadlocks @ tumblr

Oh, Dobby! He creates so much trouble for Harry in The Chamber of Secrets, but it’s only because he cares! How much Dobby loves Harry gets me every time. I loved how he popped up throughout the books, and the important role he ended up playing in The Deathly Hallows! He really stands for all of those who are underestimated yet rise to the task and succeed. Also, I don’t know if I’ve ever cried as hard as I did when he died in the last book.

2. Spook (AKA Lestibournes) from The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

Spook eventually becomes a more important character as this series goes on, but in book one he is such a random misfit teenager within the group of mature characters. I loved him immediately. He is so shyly into Vin, speaks in this bizarre (and entertaining, and confusing) dialect (for example, “Wasing the where of needing”), and is sweet with his uncle. I was super excited when I kept reading the series and got more of him!

 

3. Matthew from The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater

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art by aymmichurros @ tumblr

Matthew is just sunshine personified. How can you not love him? I love how sweet and innocent he is, and how much he loves his brothers. Also, he’s an actual dream thing? That Ronan dreamt up? Because he wanted a little buddy? I will never get over that (and I will never get over Ronan Lynch, straight up). I really just want the best for Matthew, and I care deeply about his well-being.

4. Kuwei from the Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo

I’m not sure Kuwei should really be on this list; first, because he’s nearly a side character but not quite, and second, because we have a hate-to-love relationship going on. I hated Kuwei in this series. He’s just the worst! He always has some snarky comment he has to add in or he’s otherwise getting in the way and not contributing to the success of the group. (Not to mention his intervention between Jesper and Wylan…grrr.) But I know he’s really just a helpless kid and honestly, his bits in the books were just the right amounts of exasperating and amusing. I guess he deserves a bit of recognition.

5. Bridge Four from The Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson

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art by tigonxz @ tumblr

I couldn’t resist doing more Sanderson…I know, I have a problem. But Bridge Four, you guys! They are all the best. I adore the way they all bond over their late-night stew and follow Kaladin like the fearless leader he is. Rock in particular was one of my favorites; his way of speaking and silly comments are always the perfect comedic relief. Not to mention how he has this hidden talent for archery but only wants to be a chef. What a sweet, lovable Horneater.

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And there you have it. As usual, this was harder than expected! Who would make your list of favorite minor characters?

Until next time,
Brianne

awesome book moms…do they exist?

After celebrating Mother’s Day with my mom yesterday and being inspired by some fellow book bloggers today, I thought I would write up a post on Awesome Book Moms. Perfect time of year to show moms some appreciation, right?

Except, I have a problem.

I’m not sure Awesome Book Moms exist.

Okay, I admit, this is an exaggeration. The posts I read from other book bloggers featured some great Awesome Book Moms. However, when I went through the list of books I’ve read this year (33 so far), I realized they didn’t include even one mom for me to gush over in this post.

All 33 books I’ve read in 2017 fell into one of these three categories:

  1. Awesome Book Mom did not exist because Main Character was an orphan
  2. Awesome Book Mom was icky and decidedly not awesome–she was not supportive of Main Character and not worth of any sort of gushing
  3. Awesome Book Mom was great but played a very small, if not insignificant, role in the book

What is with this? 

I know 33 books is not a huge number in the grand scheme of things, but I still find it astounding that there wasn’t one Awesome Book Mom within my 2017 reads. What is the meaning of this? How dare we treat our moms this way?

I have a few theories as to why this could be.

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First: Perhaps it has to do with the genre I’ve read most this year–fantasy.

How common is the main-character-is-an-orphan trope in fantasy books? Answer: VERY COMMON. Like, more common than common. Not to mention the mom-died-when-Main-Character-was-young trope. Just as commonly common. At least in the fantasy books I’ve been reading this year. So, obviously, there can’t be Awesome Book Moms in books that simple don’t have any moms. Makes sense, I guess. Still makes me frown.

Second theory: Moms are easy obstacles for the main character.

Have you seen this in books? Sometimes Book Moms are made out to be so caring and cautious that they just get in the way of the main character accomplishing their goals and dreams. As such, they become almost an antagonist or enemy to the main character. Why can’t we have a healthier balance of this? Moms can be caring, but they can also be supportive.

Or, on the other hand, Book Moms might disapprove of the main character’s goals and dreams, getting in their way and becoming an enemy in that sense. Maybe it’s just wishful thinking, but I would hope most moms could eventually support their children’s goals and dreams. I guess not Book Moms.

My last end-all theory: We take our moms for granted.

Authors aren’t the only ones who fall prey to this, but it certainly becomes clear in books. Let’s be honest–moms really are awesome. Where would we be without them? (Not existing, that’s for sure.) We take our moms for granted, and in novels, that means their awesomeness doesn’t get the chance to shine through and make a difference toward the main story goal. Moms deserve more, don’t they?! Authors–and the rest of us–just don’t give moms the credit they deserve.

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So there you have it. I, for one, am now on a quest to find some more books with Awesome Moms in them.

Do you know of any Awesome Book Moms? Am I just reading all the wrong books this year? Leave a comment down below!

Until next time,
Brianne