Saturday, April 19, 2014

My favourite UKYA characters #UKYADay

As you know, I'm a big supporter of UKYA! So, you'll not be surprised then that I am happily taking part in Lucy's April Extravaganza! You can check out the  Project UKYA or Project UKYA Twitter feed for other information about all the fun UKYA inspired things going on this month and for future projects. 

And while I think Lucy does a great job being at championing UKYA if you're interested in further supporting efforts by other lovely people, I would recommend also checking out the UKYA website run by the lovely Keris Stainton, Susie Day and Keren David for information about past, present and future UKYA books.

I would also strongly urge you to join the British Books Challenge run by the lovely Sarah from Feeling Fictional. Link up your review to ANY book written by a British author and be in the chance of winning monthly prizes.  The British Books Challenge has been running for four years now and is highly successful. It's a great way to motivate yourself to becoming more aware of what you are reading and to read more by British authors if that is what you wish to do!

I'd also check out Jim's Countdown YA website for more information about his upcoming blog tour highlighting the amazing UKYA books that are being published on the 5th of June.

Today, Lucy has deemed it #UKYAday and the task for every UKYA fan is to shout from the rooftops about UKYA. Why we love it, how we support it, who and what are our favourite authors and books.

Today, I'm going to be talking about some of my favourite characters that I've discovered from reading amazing UKYA.   Please do share in comments which are your favourite UKYA characters!

Poppy Sinclair from the Poppy Sinclair series by Sharon Jones

I really love Poppy Sinclair. I love that in both Dead Jealous and Dead Silent we see Poppy on a mission to get to the bottom of things. She's pretty stubborn and wonderfully straight forward and I really just want to rip her out of the pages of these books and turn her into my real life best friend. I really do think she's fantastic.  I love how these books aren't just murder mysteries but that they also deal with Poppy handling a new romantic relationships, juggling her (sometimes) difficult relationships with her parents and that they see Poppy exploring her own faith whether that be her mom's paganism or her father's Christian faith.  It's all incredibly fascinating and edgy and I am desperate to read more. Please let there be more Poppy Sinclair stories! 

Micah Grey from Pantomime and Shadowplay by Laura Lam

Another character who I absolutely love! I really love everything both about Micah Grey and about Ellada, this fictional fantasy place that Micah lives.  I absolutely adore every detail that I've read so far about Micah and about Ellada and his adventures there but with the circus and with the magicians.  I really love all of his relationships as well, not just the romantic ones with Aenea and Drystan, but also with his brother and new friends met in Shadowplay. I've found that I grew to care for Micah very quickly and now he lives in my heart. 

Harriet Manners from the Geek Girl series by Holly Smale

Harriet Manners has to be one of the best characters I've come across in a really long time. I love how geeky and awkward and just how fantastic she is.  I love the really uncomfortable situations that she gets herself in but I also love how incredibly lucky she is to be able to travel around the world with her modelling and how she has some incredible people fighting her corner like her dad and step-mother and her stalker, Toby. 

I'm so glad that there is so much more Harriet Manners in all of our futures!

Rubeus Hagrid from the Harry Potter series by JK Rowling

I know.  You see a list of favourite UKYA characters ... you scan the list of books mentioned ... you see the Harry Potter series ... and you probably imagine to see somebody like Hermione Granger or Luna Lovegood, maybe even somebody equally amazing like Neville Longbottom or  Dumbledore.  No. For me, my favourite character in Harry Potter will always be Hagrid.

Do you know how I know this definitively?  Because as I was reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows for the first time and that last scene before the prologue happens. It's the Battle of Hogwarts and I know characters have to die, right? It's the Battle of Hogwarts, the biggest show down between Harry Potter and Voldemort once and for all.  And I could barely see straight from the tears anyway and for some unknown reason, JK decides to place Hagrid in the midst of things before the duel between Harry and Voldemort. WHYYY? I had to ask N to read the final pages for me so that he could reassure me that no harm comes to my beloved Hagrid.

There's just something about him.  I love how fierce his love and loyalty is for Dumbledore. How that carries through to Harry and Hermione and Ron. I love how gentle and loveable he is and how much he cares for those who have nobody else to care for them.

Saba from the Dustlands trilogy by Moira Young

I just finished reading the final book in the Dustlands trilogy, Raging Star, so Saba and her adventures are still really fresh in my mind. I absolutely tore through this series.  It's so action-packed and tense. I love the world-building and the relationships in this book. But especially I love the force of nature that is the main character Saba.  She's so determined and capable.  I loved her wild and focused pursuit of her brother in the first book. She was so determined to survive and to rescue him that she became the Angel of Death. But she certainly isn't perfect. She makes huge mistakes and isn't very nice, especially to her little sister.  She reckons she can do everything on her own when clearly she can't. And yet over time she begins to realise all of this and change in ways for the better. Everything may not work out how she wants it, but she tries her very best.

Lyra Belacqua from His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman

Lyra is one of the first main characters that I read when I started properly reading YA. For many, many years I was mostly a literary fiction reader, so I was not expecting to fall so hard for this scrappy girl from a YA fantasy novel. But she really captured my heart right from the first page and I love how adventurous and wonderful she is.  You can really see her growing throughout these three books and I loved taking this journey with her.  It's been too long now since I last read these books. I think it must be time for a re-read! 

Who are your favourite UKYA characters?


  1. I agree with so many of these, especially Harriet and Saba! I don't know how you can pick a fave Harry Potter character though! I love so many. Great post :) Happy UKYA Day!


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