Ten most memorable ladies in English Fiction

This has turned out to be one of the toughest lists I’ve ever made. There’re so many strong and memorable fictional female characters who inspire me almost every single day. Yet, when I think about it these ladies below are the ones who pop up in my mind without any hesitation or second thought. This, ladies and gentlemen, is my list of what I consider the ten most unforgettable fictional female characters.

#- Jo March

Jo-march

The second of the four March girls in “The Little Women”, Jo has been a special childhood favourite of mine. I met Jo for the first time when I was about eight years old and I knew right then that this lady is going to be with me through out my life.Tall, gangly and boyish, Jo is one of the strongest women that I’ve ever met in the world of fiction. She’s daring, short tempered, mischievous and yet sensible and kind. She’s definitely my favourite March sister!

#- Becky Sharp

Becky

Becky Sharp from “Vanity Fair” is a very ambitious woman. Although she isn’t the picture of sainthood and is the antagonist of the novel, still she remains an unforgettable female character.This girl knows what she wants and works in all the ways she knows to achieve right that. With her dark, attractive eyes, she seduces her way to the upper rings of the society. She’s a cynical charmer who makes use of  her very passive friend to climb the social ladder while exposing the silly nature of the gentlemen of that time. I was and still am, in awe with the sheer audacity of Becky. Man, I so admire her!

#- Scarlette O’hara

Scarlet

Scarlette O’hara from “Gone with the wind” isn’t just a pretty face. She’s selfish, pretentious and oh, vain. Yet, she stands against the social decorum that women of that time were supposed to have. She’s very intelligent and isn’t the sweet, dainty southern girl that everyone (except Rhett Butler, of course) assumes her to be. She’s strong, dynamic and almost always gets what she wants. She rebuilds Tara all on her own, gives hope for everyone around her when hope was very bleak and will always be an unforgettable female protagonist of all time.

#- Lisbeth Salander

Lisbeth Salander

Whenever I read the “Millenium” series, my admiration towards its female lead character Lisbeth Salander deepens. Lisbeth is a small, thin top class computer hacker with a photographic memory. She has short black hair, a pierced nose and eyebrows, and a series of tattoos in various places in her body including a tattoo of a wasp on her neck and a dragon on her shoulder blade. She’s very skilled in changing identity, holds passports under different names and is very intelligent. She is also a victim of sexual abuse and is highly uncommunicative. She takes extreme pleasure in bringing men who abuse women to justice. What more could one ask for in a powerful, unforgettable female character?

#- Zazie Lalochere

Zazie

Zazie, the first thing I love about her is her name. When I first found the world of Zazie in “Zazie in the metro”, I didn’t feel time slipping away. I was enthralled with her and laughed till my sides ached at her antics. A novel which was originally in French, is a must read especially because of Zazie. Being in the vicinity of teenage, the Provincial girl Zazie comes to Paris to stay with her uncle who she believes is gay. Although her mother sends her to Paris so that she could sort out her own love life, Zazie has different ideas. She wants only one thing in Paris and that is to ride the metro. She is a very funny, very precocious, defiant and an insolent girl who causes havoc through out the Parisian streets. She dreams of owning a “blew-gene” (blue jean) and loves the idea of drinking “caco-calo” (coca cola). It’s such a humorous book with an unforgettable female character.

#- Elizabeth Bennet

Eliza

The female protagonist of “The Pride and Prejudice”, Elizabeth is arguably the best heroine of Jane Austen. A very special trait of Elizabeth was that she believed in speaking her mind out, which was quite uncommon to the women of that time, which was the 1813. Eliza is the second of the five Bennet sisters. She’s judgmental, opinionated and is even proud of her ability to be accurate in judging a person’s character. She’s intelligent , independent and of course bold. She has this perfect blend of wit, charisma,energy and strength which make her a perfect female character.

#- Arya Stark

Arya

Arya who is known by various names like Arry, Arya horse face, Arya underfoot etc. is almost always mistaken for a boy. The third trueborn child of Eddard Stark, she belongs to the House Stark in the fantasy series “A song of Ice and Fire”. She is a very independent, brave and a headstrong child who has a direwolf called Nymeria and a sword called Needle. Her agile body and quick way of thinking make her as memorable as any fictional character.

#- Annie Wilkes

Annie Wilkes

Annie Wilkes from “The Misery” is no ordinary woman. She is a depressed, cunning, paranoid seriel killer. Stephen King portrays her with such finesse that invariably the reader becomes fascinated over her. She has an unhealthy obsession over a series of romance novels written by the male protagonist and goes to the extent of keeping him captive in order to change the ending of one of those novels. Hard to forget, isn’t it?

#- Amy Dunne

Amy Dunne

Amy Dunne is the girl who disappeared from her home on the morning of her fifth wedding anniversary in the novel “The Gone Girl”. This beautiful girl has more to herself than what meets the eyes. She’s very precise, very calculative and so cold. She is without doubt, one of the most disturbing villainous female leads of all time!

#-  Claire Beauchamp

Claire

Claire Beauchamp from the Outlander series is a time traveller. What more could you ask for in a memorable character? She is also a nurse and later becomes a doctor. . Claire isn’t the quiet girl. She’s quick spoken, compassionate and yet ruthless. She’s very independent and fearless in any situation or danger she finds herself in. As a doctor, she is always found calm and collected in all dire situations. Claire will always remain an unforgettable female fictional character for me.

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Thoughts from the roof

A father  was arrested after neighbours spotted him perching his two sons precariously on the chimney of his 40ft high house for a bizarre photo shoot at the family home in Welling, South East London. Jonathan Blake, an archbishop of the Open Episcopal Church, placed his children on the roof of his home and took pictures of them reading for a school project. OPS: One of the images taken by Mr Blake showing his son Nathan, aged eight Credit: News Shopper

When I was a wild ten year old, my brown face framed with long unruly hair, my sister and I had this quirk of climbing on to the roof of our home. Almost always this is done around 3 in the afternoon, for that’s the time when our mom dozes off with the fan lazily stirring about the warm afternoon air in her room.

Climbing on to the roof wasn’t a hard feat for us. The wall enclosing our backyard is right beside a tiny outdoor kitchen that my parents had built (this kitchen has the basic Sri Lankan necessities including a rarely used hearth, a coconut scraper,glass bottles of all shapes and sizes, empty clay curd pots and of course coconuts. It is adjoining the main house and is a common structure in villages around Kandy, Sri Lanka). This wall was the most convenient “bridge to Terabithia” for us, and hence, we’d drag a chair out to the backyard, stand on it, reach to the top of the wall, heave our knobbly bodies over the wall and start walking till we reach the roof of the small, cluttered out door kitchen. Then we’d climb on to its roof, walk cautiously till we reach the roof of our home.

Once we are on the roof of our house, we’d sit and look at the world below us and the view stretching before us. We’d pull out a raw mango or some toffees from our pockets and would eat them away, slowly, without a care in the world while staring at the faraway mountains and the tall coconut trees. Sometimes we would look up at the clear blue sky and we’d pick out the different shapes of the white cotton clouds floating serenely above us. Sometimes I’d come alone with a book and read while the rest of the household slumbers peacefully.

It never crossed our mind the danger of the very act. It rarely does when you are an impatient ten year old. Many say that they miss the sheer freedom and the carefree nature of childhood. But what I really miss the most is the impulsive mind of a child. I believe we tend to lose this impulsion as we grow up. We learn to “look before we leap”, think twice, calculate the moves and all the while we forget to act on the whim. However, a little bit of impulsion doesn’t hurt,does it?

The Case of the Red Sock

Once upon a time, there was this mystery that was baffling me to such a maddening level. No, it isn’t anything cool that includes a sudden death or a ring of smugglers. And no, it definitely doesn’t need the aid of the Forensic Department or the attention of the police. It just involves a red sock.

I found a sock with my clothes, a red one, and it didn’t belong to me. Clearly, it wasn’t new but it looked well cared for. There were no holes on it but it had a few stray threads coming out from the seams. It was thick and fluffy and when I pulled it on, it was snug and cozy. Nobody knew how it  came to be with my clothes. The red sock had just materialized out of nowhere amidst my belongings.

I’d have spent hours trying to solve this mystery but till today, I’ve not come close to finding out how the sock appeared in my room and to who it belonged. Sometimes I’d try to imagine who the owner would have been. Sometimes I’d fantasize that the red sock came from another time, from another era. I know..my mind just refuses to be harnessed.

Now, I’ve begun to accept the presence of the red sock in my life. It had brought about that element of mystery to my simple existence and I remain grateful for that. A toast  to all the other mysteries that are yet to come in all our lives to make it unique and our very own.