Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Character Traits I Love

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. If you want to participate, click here. This week's theme is Top Ten Character Traits I Love.

A book is nothing without an amazing character to lead it. If I cannot connect to the character and view him/her as a real person then the story isn't believable or interesting. A good story always starts with a character. Below are some of the character traits I love in random order! These traits are based on teenage characters, however they can apply to adult characters, too. 

1. Empathetic
For me to enjoy and love a character, he/she must have compassion and empathy for others. Empathy goes beyond simply being kind. The best example is Alix from Hidden. Alix broke the law and risked her life to protect an innocent stranger. While this is an extreme scenario, I love characters who take the time to understand other's feelings and put other's feelings and needs above their own.

2. Honest
Unreliable narrators are tricky for me. While people do lie, I generally want the character to be honest to themselves and to the reader of the realities of their situation- not just seeking the truth, but telling it. A clear example for me is Tandy in Confessions of A Murder Suspect. While Tandy is unreliable with her own memory, I love how she was honest with herself about it and clearly dictated to the reader her honest feelings regarding her own dishonesty and internal conflict of having a lack of perfect memory.

3. Reflective/4. Imperfect
I'm combining 3 and 4 because they go hand in hand. Imperfect is a huge one for me because in order for the character to feel real, they need to mess up and make mistakes like humans do, as nobody is perfect. At the same time, that character should acknowledge their mistakes and become reflective of them. The clearest example I can think of is from Little and Lion. Both Lionel and Suzette made huge mistakes, and I love them not only for being human, but for admitting they made those mistakes and learning from them. 

5. Heroic 
One doesn't need to have special powers or be characters from the Gone series to be heroic. I love it when characters are willing to defy the societal standard or their government to stand up for what's right or to save others from bullying or other various tragedies. Speth in All Rights Reserved is a clear example for me in this sense. She has no special powers other than a clear mind and a determination to stand up for equality and freedom of speech. There is heroism in journalism, like Carla in Second Impact, who is willing to write and expose the truth. 

6. Encouraging
Of course I love characters who are inspirational and encouraging, those who can offer me wisdom and strength. I adore characters who are role models, who prove that anything is possible and encourage readers to believe in themselves, keep their head up, and peruse their dreams. Hayley from Radiate is the first character that comes to my mind. Her positivity while facing cancer was stellar. 

7. Funny
Besides satirical humor and funny plots in general (ex: Losers Take All), I personally love characters who have the confidence to laugh at themselves or who can take awful situations and find light hearted silver linings in them. For example, Trevor Noah in Born A Crime grew up during difficult apartheid and even as a young child he could joke about abuse and poverty but still acknowledge it's seriousness. 

Well, that's 7- what do you think the last 3 should be?


  1. I value honesty in characters, too.

    My TTT.

  2. Hi Julia! I really loved this post. Here is my post- https://paigesofbook.blogspot.com/2019/10/top-ten-tuesday-character-types-and.html

  3. Gotta' love a funny character, and honesty is another really important value. :) Thanks so much for visiting Finding Wonderland last week.


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