March can be pretty bleak for a lot of reasons, mainly because it’s acting like January when all you want is spring. But one positive thing is guaranteed to occur during the third month of the year: Women’s History Month!
While it’s important to celebrate the real-life women who have paved the way for us in 2019 (though look at how far we still have to go), it’s important to also honor the literary legends who have been inspiring for centuries or even just a few years. Because books are the epicenter of female empowerment, compiling this list wasn’t easy; it was worth the challenge though. Alas, here is my ranking of the top 10 female characters of all time (or at least of the books I’ve read).
Nobody can argue that many aspects of 2017 were piles of flaming garbage. That doesn’t mean literature failed us though. I read 24 books* this year. While there’s never enough time for all the wonderful writing in the world and while I wish I had read more, I am more than satisfied with the books I chose this year. Therefore, to the Big Little Literature library: You got ranked.
*This number does not count Zadie Smith’s Swing Time and Aravind Adiga’s Selection Day, which I just could not finish.
If reading books is my favorite hobby, then talking about them is my second favorite. It’s no secret that I could discuss literature (including the best parts of a book, the most dreadful, its cultural influences, its influences on culture, every literary device under the sun, etc., etc.) just about every day.
But not everyone appreciates the enthusiasm or can relate to that love. So when my good friend, Hilary, told me a book club was starting up exactly two years ago, I jumped at the chance to join. A group of women with similar yet different perspectives discussing at length the inner workings of the world’s finest writing?? WHERE DO I SIGN UP?!
They say home is where the heart is. So where do you call home when your heart’s been ripped in two? This is what I kept asking while reading Tell the Wolves I’m Home. Calling a book “heart-wrenching” sounds a little cliche, but that’s how I felt every time I picked it up. It’s a story of AIDS, love, heartbreak, family, growing up, and finding yourself. The classic band Westlife can explain it best:
“I’ll see you again
You never really left
I feel you walk beside me
I know I’ll see you again”