Top 5 Wednesday | Unlikable Characters

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Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam. You basically get a new topic every Wednesday, and you list your Top 5 books related to that topic. Head over to the Goodreads group, and add your name to the list of Wednesday-ers if you’re interested in participating!

Today’s topic is “Most Unlikable Character,” and this doesn’t include villains or anti-heroes, since they’re meant to be morally ambiguous and generally unlikable human beings. This topic is centered around characters that were meant to be likable but failed to charm you. I have a vast arsenal of books I can choose from for this list. xD I’m very nit-picky when it comes to characters and their development, so I should have no problem coming up with items for this week’s topic.

Alyssa Gardner from Splintered by A. G. Howard

Splintered is a book I read fairly recently, but I had to DNF it because I couldn’t handle how unlikable the characters were. Alyssa is the protagonist and the author tries to make her quirky and interesting by resorting to things like cultural appropriation, theft and making her so spineless that she’s easily manipulated by not one, but two boys. She was so dull and incredibly stupid that there was no way in hell I was ever going to take her seriously.

Belly from the Summer I Turned Pretty series by Jenny Han

Belly is perhaps the most immature character I have ever encountered: she is sixteen years old, yet she has little to no control over her hormones. She fits the description of pre-pubsescent girls rather than girls who are sixteen. Her life is ruled by little else besides boys. She treats her family and female friends like crap for no reason. She’s always whining, and she genuinely believes the world revolves around her. She was the main reason I disliked the series as much as I did.

Tate and Ridge from Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover

I’ve been thinking about YA and NA’s commitment issues recently, and have come to realize that there is a huge double standard among the community when it comes to cheating. If the protagonists are the ones cheating, people tend to say it’s justified, excusable and whatever. If it’s someone else who’s doing the cheating, he/she is a villain, an asshole who is a sad excuse for a human being. Why is it like that? I, for one, do not understand cheaters, nor do I think it’s – in any way – justified to form a strong emotional connection with another person while you’re also professing your love to someone. Which is why I genuinely disliked both the characters in this book. They’re both horrible people, and CoHo kept trying to convince me otherwise. Didn’t work.

Aelin from the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas

Now, make no mistake. Celaena is a character I could get behind: infinitely bad-ass, snarky, complex yet loving, caring, with a genuinely good heart underneath. She would do anything for her friends- she would die for them, she would kill for them, she would do anything. Aelin… lol. One of my main problems with this series was how Maas disguised the literal 180 in characterization under the label of ‘development.’ Development occurs when a character’s existing traits transform in one way or another. They either slowly fade away into ALMOST non-existence, or they are honed, polished to make a well-rounded, stronger human being. Everything that made Celaena bad-ass and a protagonist worth rooting for was either destroyed or taken to extreme levels within the blink of an eye. Celaena was charmingly cocky; Aelin was arrogant and thought the ground beneath her feet deserved to be kissed. Celaena was a good fighter with obvious shortcomings; Aelin is invincible. Celaena was a complex human being with a moral conscience who cared about other people’s feelings; Aelin jumps on every opportunity to blame anyone but herself. And (spoilers if you haven’t read QoS, stop reading here), Celaena would never have been willing to murder Dorian. Never in a million years. Aelin made her choice, was just about ready to slaughter Dorian and had it not been for Chaol and Nesryn, Dorian would be dead. And then she had the nerve to take the credit for Dorian’s being alive. What the fuckkkkkk.

Jason Grace from the Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan

Don’t hate me, please. But Jason Grace was by far the dullest character in this series. Overshadowed completely by the charismatic Percy and the snarky powerhouse that was Leo, Jason was largely a Gary Stu in the background serving brooding looks and intended to be mysterious and intriguing but instead coming off as flat, boring and uninteresting. Every time I came across an arc revolving around him, I rolled my eyes so hard.

So that’s my Top Five Wednesday for this week! What are some characters that you disliked? Do you agree or disagree with anything on my list? Let me know in the comments below – and as always, thanks for stopping by, and happy reading!

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  1. I’ve heard a lot of bad things about Belly, which is why I refuse to read the trilogy. And I agree, I don’t exactly hate Jason.. it’s just… compared with other characters in HoO, he’s just so boring! He’s a child of the big 3, and yet he’s completely overshadowed by the rest of the gang.

  2. I absolutely hated Maybe Someday because of the characters too. I had no respect for Sidney or Ridge and by the end not even for Maggie. This book offended me in a way that if I was not reading it on my Ipad I would have thrown it across the room. I am a minority when it comes to this book, so seeing someone that has the same opinion I have it’s very refreshing! 🙂

  3. I hated the character shifts in QoS and I’ve ultimately decided I’m breaking up with the author. This, coupled with what happened with ACOMAF, just made me realize that I’d like to spend my time reading books I enjoy and not ones that make me want to throw them across the room or set them on fire.

  4. I can see how Alyssa can be unlikable, however, for me, Jeb was the worst in this book. He thought he was “protecting” her but I feel like he just wanted to control and belittle her a little, like he couldn’t handle how strong she was. UGHH

  5. I would have to disagree with you on Alyssa Gardner. I actually liked her character, which surprised me because I usually don’t like the female protagonists in YA novels.

  6. I completely agree about Jason. I was so annoyed when I read the Lost Hero and Percy wasn’t in it, almost to the point where I wasn’t going to continue with the series because Jason, Piper, and – to a certain extent – Leo just didn’t capture me like Percy, Annabeth, and Grover. I still need to read Queen of Shadows, but I definitely felt the character shift from Celaena to Aelin. Sad to hear that she becomes so unbearable in book four. 🙁

    Charlotte @ Bookmarks and Blogging

  7. I completely agree with you on Aelin! OMG Celaena was a total bad ass especially during the second book but Aelin is definitely arrogant! All I see is her being out of character rather than experiencing character development. It’s annoying and frankly disappointing. Also, I second you on Jason Grace. He’s just SO BORING and I don’t see why people look up to him as a leader, Percy is wayyyy more charming and interesting. His girlfriend is a bit boring too, mostly at first. I came around Piper after the fourth book or so but initially… ugh, so dull especially compared to Percy and Annabeth. Great list 😀

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