Bookish Listopia: characters who made meh books tolerable

The Characters Who Made “Meh” Books Tolerable

Posted April 3, 2018 by Amber in Memes / 17 Comments


Over the last two years, I’ve read a lot of books, but not all of them have been gold medal winners.  Some have been *so* frustrating, and others the worst kind of predictable.  Love triangles, overflowing with cheese… I could go on.

I do acknowledge, though, not all books are purely unenjoyable.  Sometimes, there will be characters that stand out even if I don’t like the story.  Here are some characters of note.


Sydney Sage

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead


Legend by Marie Lu

The Faeries

So Silver Bright by Lisa Mantchev


Crossed by Ally Condie

Letty Hempstock

The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman


The Monstrous Child by Francesca Simon


La Belle Sauvage by Philip Pullman

Tik Tok

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson


Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake


Otherworld by Jason Segal and Kirsten Miller


Thank goodness for these characters, who gave me some hope through the books I didn’t enjoy.  They’re the ones that helped me get to the end.

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt is:

Characters I liked That Were In Non-Favorite/Disliked Books


I can almost always latch on to a character, even a minor one, if I don’t like a book.  Almost.


Have you ever hated a book, but liked a character?

Have you ever DNF’d a book because a character was so bad?

Has a character ever saved you from DNF’ing a book?

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17 responses to “The Characters Who Made “Meh” Books Tolerable

  1. I have seen so many posts in the past that hate on Sydney and I just sit here like why? Yeah she aint the best but there are way worst characters in the series than her. She wasn’t supposed to be another Rose.

    • Amber

      If it wasn’t for Sydney, Bloodlines would have been a DNF for me. Her character had more depth and direction to her than any of the others by a LONG shot. She wasn’t everything I love in a character, but she was interesting! Saved the book for me.

    • Amber

      Thank goodness for those characters who keep us reading! Which characters have you loved, even though you didn’t like their book?

    • Amber

      You could definitely read La Belle Sauvage (The Book of Dust) without having read His Dark Materials! It’s more of a companion novel. 🙂

  2. Poinsettia

    Nice list! I think this week’s topic was tough. I enjoyed the Bloodlines series. I picked it up because I loved Adrian from Vampire Academy. I though VA was okay, but never was a favorite. However, Adrian and Sydney are great. Here is our Top Ten Tuesday.

    • Amber

      I think I would have enjoyed Bloodlines much more if I had read it when I was a bit younger. The world was certainly interesting, but I didn’t care for most the characters.

  3. See, Anna Dressed in Blood is one of the books I love. And I also love Letty Hempstead in Ocean at the End of the Lane. Neil Gaiman is one of my favorite writers. I love his style of writing and his lyrical descriptions, but I do think some of that can make the pace of his narrative go slower which will put some people off. Even though I loved the book, I believe I gave it 3 stars for that exact reason.

    Please go check out my list for this week

    • Amber

      That’s alright! 🙂 Not all books are made for all people. Anna tends to be a favorite for most, and I’m really glad people enjoyed it – it just wasn’t for me. Neil Gaiman is hit or miss for me, depending on the story. I really liked Stardust and The Graveyard Book!

  4. Characters are definitely the most important part of a book for me! If I can’t find some characters I like, I’m pretty much guaranteed to hate the book. But I’ve read entire series that I don’t particularly enjoy just to find out what happens to that one character. Which, hahaha, I’m SURE isa good use of my time…

    • Amber

      It’s like a trap, isn’t it? We don’t want to keep reading, but what if one of our darlings DIES and the HORROR mustkeepreading.

    • Amber

      Me too! They really need their own standalone novel, but I don’t think he’s planning anything like that.

    • Amber

      Indie just didn’t feel like she fit into that story, compared to how shallow I found the other characters. I’m glad you liked her, too!