Top Ten Picks: Favorite Male Literary Characters

Thursday, July 22, 2010


This week's Top Ten list from Random Ramblings asks for your top ten Male Literary Characters. Here's mine...



1) Hamlet: Confused, angry, frustrated, Hamlet was the original troubled teen. His brilliant character spawned legions of similar characters, Holden Caulfield, James Dean's character in Rebel Without a Cause, etc.


2) Death (The Book Thief): Markus Zusak didn't invent the character of Death, but he was the first author who ever made the reader love him. In Zusak's hands Death became a sympathetic creature who is caught in the midst of the horrible war, just like everyone else.



3) Arthur Dent (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy): He is the quintessential British man, except he's swept away in an intergalactic adventure. The hapless Dent is sweet and sincere and the perfect straight man in the midst of Douglas Adams hilarious story.


4) Gandalf (Lord of the Rings): He was the original good wizard. He resists power and fights for what's right. He is fiercely loyal and kind, but you can't forget that he's not just your average guy and like any wizard he always has another trick up his sleeve.


5) Rhett Butler (Gone With the Wind): He's a rouge and an unashamed cad, but he's a good man. Despite his reputation you can't help but root for him and he has some of the best lines, "Frankly my dear..."



6) Jeeves: He is the brilliant manservant to Wooster's hopeless gentleman. Jeeves epitomizes the straight man, a frequently mimicked character, who is always in control.


7) Atticus Finch (To Kill a Mockingbird): Perhaps this is an obvious one, but Finch remains one of my favorite characters ever created. He was a moral compass in a town where minding your own business was the easy thing to do. He was kind and loving to his children, while also standing his ground against popular opinion.



8) Bean (Ender's Shadow): Ender is the famous character from the Ender series (obviously), but it was Bean's story that blew me away. Small in size, but full of courage and stubbornness, Bean grows up on dangerous streets and survives by his cleverness.


9) Jean Valjean (Les Miserable): He was a thief, an adoptive father, a mayor, a factory owner, but above all he was a man. He rescued a child and showed mercy to the merciless. He was complex and filled with guilt. He is the reason that Hugo's epic novel has moved readers for generations.


10) Miles Roby (Empire Falls): At first glance Roby is a schmuck. He manages a diner in a small town and is respected by no one, including his wife, but the beauty of this character is the way Miles grows on you. He is everyman. He puts everyone else's needs before his own. I found myself loving him and cheering for him. He has a quiet strength that surprises you and stands up for what's right when it counts.

9 comments:

gautami tripathy said...

We have lots common! Click on my name to find out the uncommon ones!

Allie said...

Oh, I like your choices! Everyone always forgets about Bean, but I liked his story more than Ender's...and found him more likeable than Ender.

Jenners said...

I love your choice of Death!!! Perfection!!

And Miles grew on me too!

Love the list.

Amanda said...

Gah! I've only read three of these books and I barely remember one of those...

Cathy said...

Great list... especially Jeeves!

Stephanie said...

I am in the process of listening to The Book Thief right now. I am loving it. I will admit the beginning didn't grab me but now I am hooked.

Avid Reader said...

Allie - I did too. Ender was tiresome sometimes because he's so good.

Amanda - You've got to read a few more, they're all great.

Stephanie - I can't wait to hear what you think!

Jillian said...

O0oh glad to see we have similar choices here. And I most definitely have to agree with Ender -- he is such a fantastic character!

Gregory D. Rothbard said...

I really like your blog. I am learning a lot from you, thanks for doing this for as long as you have been doing it. I appreciate it greatly.