Top Ten Tuesdays

Top Ten Tuesday (#11): Best Character Names

Top Ten Tuesday is an original weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. However, we decided to take a page from Just Us Book Blog and split the Top Ten Tuesday posts between the two of us. We’ll each post our top five book choices (in no particular order) based on certain themes. If you would also like to participate, find out the rules by clicking here.

If I remember names, it is either because there are super catchy or important characters that I loved and I cannot get them out of my head!

1. Atticus Finch @ Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird ==> This is a classic! I mean come on! Atticus Finch? As much as I love his character in the book, his name has always stuck with me. Lee gets extra points from me just because of the character’s name! even Scout’s  name is amazing!


2. Theodore Finch @ Jennifer Niven’s All the Bright Places ==> Yeah! I know that Theodore’s last name is Finch same as Atticus lol, but I love Niven’s character. Everybody calls him Finch even Niven herself. I think it is really catchy! Also, who is excited for the movie? OMG. We know that Elle Fanning is going to play Violet, but we still don’t know who is going to play our Finch!


3. Cadence Sinclair @ E. Lockhart’s We Were Liars ==> The Sinclair’s are amazing! Not only does Lockhart provides a beautiful map in this book, but her novel is so well crafted. I think I was attached to the Sinclair’s family name more than specific characters. PS: I loved the references to King Lear!


4. Merit Voss @ Colleen Hoover’s Without Merit ==> I loved the name of the protagonist! I didn’t think that the title would reflect a character’s name, but this is such an interesting one! I wish my name was Merit!


5. Sherlock Holmes @ Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes ==> Listen, I think I pick these names because of their personalities! I love Sherlock Holmes. I mean who doesn’t?


As I writer, I understand that naming is very difficult. I personally prefer unique names that have some connection with the characters themselves. (I may one day post a guide to finding the perfect character name here.) Still this was a hard list to limit to just 5.

6. Mercedes Thompson @ Patricia Briggs’ Mercy Thompson Series ==> This lead comes from a family line of mechanics, so it’s clear where her family got inspiration when naming her. This series is my number one favorite adult fantasy, so definitely check it out!

7. Katniss Everdeen, Cinna, and basically the entire batch of characters @ Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games ==> This series puts a lot of stake on the names of its characters. The people in the districts have names from the natural world, such as food and nature, while the people of Panem have names heavily influenced by Roman culture. This says a lot about what to expect from the different characters. For more information of the different name meanings, click this lovely article here.

8. Waverly / MeiMei @ Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club ==> One of the major themes in this novel is the identity crisis faced by the 1st generation Chinese-American daughters. During Waverly’s story, she explains how she got her American name from the name of the street but her Chinese name is MeiMei, which means “Little Sister.” Both of these names are unique and show an important facet of her character, her tug-of-war between the two cultures.

9. Daenerys Targaryen @ George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones ==> Who doesn’t love Daenerys?! I love everything about this character: her name, her purpose, her inner and outer beauty, the dragons (DUH). But because of the theme, I’ll just stick with discussing her name. Besides having a musical sound to it, dean is Hebrew for “god is my judge” while eris is Greek for “goddess of discourse.” Daenerys being a goddess of judgement and discourse really fits with her character’s purpose of burning down and rebuilding her home and the cities she passes along the way.

10. Nikanj @ Octavia Butler’s Dawn ==> This one is a little harder to explain. Lilith, the main human character and girl in the below image, wakes up on an alien ship many many many years after they had put her in a type of cyrosleep. The aliens, called Oankali, are made up of males, females, and Ooloi (which are neither male or female). To create offspring, you need all three. Without giving too much away, Lilith receives an Ooloi partner named Nikanj. Nikanj is really the only Oankali on the ship that readers get to truly connect with and become sympathetic towards. This is a great book which deals with a lot of huge themes, including multi-faceted racism.

What are some of your favorite character names? Leave your answer as a comment below.

21 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday (#11): Best Character Names

  1. I want to nag my head on the wall after reading your great list! How could I have forgotten about Theodore and Cadence in my TTT since I LOVED those two books! or Daenerys Targaryen my beloved Mother of Dragons??? unacceptable! Glad you didn’t forget! Great list 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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