Non-Fictional Feelings for Fictional Characters

A slightly different post this morning, I’ve been trying some behind-the-scenes work here on the blog this morning — composition, infrastructure, design, etc. The books that I’m overdue to review are hard to write about, I’m plugging away at 4 different reviews right now that I absolutely want to get right , and that’s time-consuming. Also, Grossman’s YOU: A Novel took 2 or 3 days longer to read than I’d expected — worth the time, but it did sort of mess up my schedule. So, like I said. Something different.


I saw that picture on‘s facebook page*, and as one does, shared it, which prompted a friend to ask what some of my favorite fictional characters were. I decided to limit the list to fictional characters from books (a. see the picture and b. see this blog), and to characters I had “non-fictional feelings” for — Hannibal Lecter was a favorite (for 2 books, anyway), but I had no emotional attachment to him, or Evanovich‘s Ranger — fun character, but don’t really care about the guy. Here, with added commentary, is my list.

  • Archie Goodwin — this is the name that jumped immediately to mind. Archie’s the big brother I never had — the quick, agile wit; the athleticism; the way with the ladies — and the rest of the things that older brothers so often exemplify to those of us who never had one (on the other hand, we didn’t have to share a bedroom). ‘Course he makes the list.
  • Spenser — it’s almost impossible to spend as much time in a guy’s head as I have Spenser’s (or Archie’s) and not have some sort of emotional bond there. Everything I said about Archie applies here too, actually.
  • Harry Dresden — Chicago’s resident Wizard P. I. He feels like a friend. Hanging with Harry for a night of RPGs, Double Whoppers, and McAnally’s beer sounds ideal.
  • Scout Finch — she’s plucky, honest, a born-reader, and loves her pa (even when she doesn’t understand him). She’s had a soft spot in my heart longer than most of the people on this list.
  • Hermione Granger — sure, her famous buddy still gets all the press. But it’s this brave, clever, stubborn and resourceful gal who’s the most consistent hero in the series — and the one you can count on for genuine emotional moments. (this isn’t to take away anything from Ron, Luna, Albus, Neville, Sirius, Dobby, etc. — but Hermione alone manages to do it in every book in the series)
  • Chet Little / Oberon — it felt like a cheat listing these separately, and it just looked wrong to leave one of them off the list. So…I cheated. Both of these charming gentlemen will win you over within a few pages (in Dog On It and Hounded, respectively), and after you spend a few books with them, they’ll have stolen your heart. They make you laugh, they make you worry — and in Hunted, Oberon commits himself to one of the bravest acts I’ve seen, and choked me up a bit. The humans these guys live with almost make the list just on their testimony.
  • Angela Gennaro — if you hadn’t grown attached to Angie already, especially after Darkness, Take my Hand‘s events, there’s just no way you can’t fall apart with her at the end of Gone, Baby, Gone

Let me hear from you, reader/follower/happener-upon-this-post — who do you have non-fictional feelings for?


* I looked but couldn’t find the source for this, otherwise I’d have cited it. If you know who should get the credit, please let me know.

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