noblealice: book pages joining to make a heart (misc:stock:falling star from your hand)
noblealice ([personal profile] noblealice) wrote2010-01-05 04:53 pm

"the artist deals with what cannot be said in words"

PART THREE OF THE FEMALE CHARACTER LOVE MEME: BOOKS/COMICS

PART ONE:TV PART TWO:FILMS
(only, looking at those, there are so many people I want to ADD so maybe I will have to make another list, who knows!)


My Top Ten Literary Female Characters:

01. Lyra Silvertongue (His Dark Materials Series)

"'I wish…' she said, and stopped. There was nothing that could be gained by wishing for it. A final, deep shaky breath, and she was ready to go on."

Lyra is one of my most favourite characters in fiction, ever. Brave, bold, emotional, loyal, curious, rebellious--she can lie her head off in a tight spot, but she has a distinct sense of honour. She's very smart, but not book-learned; I think at one point it's said that she "intimidated" the Jordan scholars who adopted her with her wildness, and so her education was kind of patchy. (Sidebar: how awesome is that? That she scared the scholars? This is why I luff her.) She has her own very distinct sense of right and wrong and a very good heart, and I think that's the key to her character--she believes strongly in what's right, and to hell with anyone who crosses that.


02. Suze Simons (The Mediator Series)*

"Unrequited love is all right in books and things, but in real life, it completely sucks."

Suze is the badass that I wanted to be in school. She's a no-nonsense girl who is just so practical and proactive and doesn't take shit from anyone. The series is very 'teenager' but that's what I love about it. I love escaping into that very specific world of hormones, crushes, uncertainty and obsessing about hair/fashion. While I love her relationship with Jesse, what I like most about Suze is her attitude towards life, her job, her 'destiny' and her family. She talks to the dead but doesn't let that define her. She tries to help ghosts cross over to the other side, but when they don't go easily or quietly she is ready to kick their butt to get them there. Also, her friendships! With her New York bestie, Gina, her step-brothers that she eventually loves (Brad, Jake & DAVID!!!) and Father Dominic.


03. Luna Lovegood (Harry Potter Series)

"That's all right. Anyway, my mum always said things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end. If not always in the way we expect."

What I love most about Luna is how detached she seems to be from this world, like she's just observing it. Perhaps it's because she lost her mother at such a young age. She says she's quite sad about it sometimes, but seems to accept it as a part of her life, just like people thinking she is weird, how nargels live in mistletoe and that crumple-horned snorlacks exist. She doesn't have to see her mother's love to know it exists and the same thing applies to the monsters of the magical world. Also: REMEMBER HOW SHE PAINTED A MURAL OF EVERYONE'S FACES ON HER WALL AND CEILING BECAUSE THEY WERE HER FRIENDS AND THAT WAS NEW AND EXCITING TO HER AND HOW THAT WAS THE BEST THING EVER?


04. OFFICER Ingrid Third (Fillmore!)

"I was thinking, if one person other than the welcome-wagon-girl was the least bit nice to me by two o'clock, I wouldn't confess to something I didn't do."

Ingrid is half of the hard-boiled detective-duo of delinquents-turned-safety-patrol-officers on the show Fillmore! and I kinda love her! When she is new to school, she is sorta labelled as the weird Aisan goth chick and is a bit of a loner. Everyone fits into some sort of club or group - except Ingrid, until Cornelius vouches for her and becomes her first real friend. Despite being the smartest kid in school (she has a photographic memory) she doesn't care much for grades. She protested the school's policy of standardized tests and is a great friend and loyal partner, especially when put to the test. One of my favourite episodes is when she goes undercover and joins a girls-guide-esque troop.


05. Kim Possible (Kim Possible)

"What's not to get? It's a soap opera. See, Felicia's arch-enemy created a machine that swapped her brain with Brock's. And they're teasing that Charity and Danny will get together in this episode but that's never going to happen. It'd end the series."

How can you NOT love Kim Possible? Her slogan is "I CAN DO ANYTHING" and she is a cheerleader that routinely SAVES THE WORLD. I mean, what is not to like?! The whole show is filled with smart writing and gender-bending the traditional expectations of the super hero/sidekick roles. It's like feminism-lite for cartoons!


06. Toph Bei Fong (Avatar: The Last Airbender)

"No, that’s the problem. You’ve got to stop thinking like an airbender. There’s no different angle, no clever solution, no trickity-trick that’s going to move that rock. You’ve got to face it head on."

At first, my favourite female in Avatar was Katara, but as soon as I met Toph, I knew she was my favourite. I feel like it's cheating to say that I love Toph's earthiness, but she really is a very grounded person. She is level-headed, strong, confident and self-assured. She is straightforward and direct with her honesty. She has no illusions that life is a walk in the clouds. She is okay with her blindness and often jokes about it instead of pulling a 'woe is me' emo-girl routine. She punches the people she likes and ran away from her comfy home-life to live like a vagrant and fight. Plus, she LAUGHS. It's no wonder than when Aang has the vision of his new teacher in the swamp, it was of Toph giggling and laughing. She may be the world's best earth bender (who CREATED metal-bending) but she is still a kid and that means that she still enjoys playing in the dirt and making mud pies. She isn't really interested in bureaucracy or ruling any part of the earth kingdom, I think that Toph will always be travelling and playing and fighting because her home is where her friends are and the earth.


07. Elizabeth Bennett (Pride and Prejudice)

"I am only resolved to act in a manner which will constitute my own happiness without reference to you or any person so wholly unconnected with me."

I was tempted to put Charlotte here so I could talk about my theory that she is a lesbian and I love how she cooly handled and managed Mr. Collins when no-one else could. She can go a whole day only seeing him once! But I love Lizzy's sharp tongue a lot more than Charlotte's patience. Girls with bite and sass (even in Edwardian England) are so much more fun! I think the best scene is when she stands up to Lady Catherine despite just hours before, discovering what Darcy has done for her family and thinking that he will never want to see her again. She believes herself undeserving of his love in this moment, probably reflecting on all the things he said during their last encounter and yet she stands proud and doesn't relent when Lady Catherine insults and intimidates her. I always fist pump at that moment!


08. Anne Shirley (Anne of Green Gables)

"My life is a perfect graveyard of buried hopes. That's a sentence I read once and I say it over to comfort myself in these times that try the soul."

Oh, Anne! I think that reading these books is something that is REQUIRED of every Canadian. And Anne has certainly influenced my life and writing. When I was younger, I wanted to be like her SO MUCH. I think that now I've grown up a bit I can understand Marilla's exasperation when Anne would say things like she was in the DEPTHS OF DESPAIR. It is wonderfully romantic to live your life with your head in the clouds, but not practical. Still, I loved that she believed that it would be beautifully romantic to almost drown and when she used the word 'tragical' and that she wanted to be called Cordelia! Oh, ANNE! she invented kindred spirits and spells her name with an "E" on the end because it looks nicer and she calls ponds 'the lake of shining waters'. She eventually marries Gilbert Blythe and it is the most satisfying romance of all 19th century Canadian literature! YEAH, I WENT THERE.
Some more quotes:
+ "Marilla, isn't it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?"
+ "I don't want diamond sunbursts, or marble halls. I just want you."
+ "I am well in body although considerably rumpled in spirit."


09. Jean-Louise Finch aka Scout (To Kill a Mockingbird)

"Don't you remember me, Mr. Cunningham? I'm Jean Louise Finch. You brought us some hickory nuts one early morning, remember? We had a talk. I went and got my daddy to come out and thank you. I go to school with your boy. I go to school with Walter; he's a nice boy."

We see the whole summer through Scout's eyes and even though we may understand more things through the hindsight of history than she does at the moment of her telling, she is always shown as a reliable narrator and good judge of character. She is a loving daughter and sister and fast friend of Dill. She is a tomboy and I love that she'd been reading since she'd been born and is quick to throw a punch at anyone who talks about her father. Things seem so much simpler to a child. Boo is her friend. Tom was innocent. You are not to shoot at mockingbirds. I wish we'd seen more of Scout as she grew up and how she had to reconcile the easy absolutes of youth with the murky grey of adulthood. It would be hard to live under the shadow of Atticus, to try to honour him everyday with your decisions, but I bet Scout tries and that's all that you can ask of anyone.


10. Leisel Meminger, Word Shaker (The Book Thief)

"I have hated the words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right."

There is so much I want to write here but since I want everyone (IN THE WORLD) to read this novel there is not much I can say without spoiling everything. Just, umm, she is the newest addition to this list but already I know that my love for Leisel will last forever. Gosh, reading this novel was like being punched in the gut, but in a good way. And I couldn't choose an actress to show her because in my mind she is untouchable and I don't ever think this book could be made into a movie/adaptation to another media because of the IMAGERY and NARRATION (by Death!) and how some things are told to the reader before they happen but that's life, death is inevitable and Leisel learns that when she watches her younger brother die on the train. And she has horrid nightmares for months after when she stays with her foster parents and so she stays up with Hans to avoid sleep and he teaches her to read. But the only book she owns is the one she's stolen. So she keeps stealing books and slowly learns to read and learns of the power of words (during WW1 in Germany, when propaganda was so important) from Max (the jewish boxer they hide in their basement), the joy of life through Rudy (her best friend who hates the Hitler Youth meetings) and the strength of the soul from the Hubermanns and oh, oh, OH. ♥ ♥ ♥ LIESEL ♥ ♥ ♥


I decided to limit myself to one character per fandom or I'd go on forever. Still, all but one of these are KIDS (although Anne does grow up in her series), not full-grown women. I guess the books I've read so far haven't given me awesome adult female characters. I'm taking this to mean that I need to READ MORE BOOKS.

Hmmmm...I"m not really doing well, am I, since my second DW post is ALSO a meme. *facepalm*