Characters in good fiction are often very interesting creatures: with one turn of phrase a man could be a hero or villain, a little splash of guilt to the side and that person can simply be a martyr, another can be ideologically vacant or someone for us to aspire to be. Okay, I’m somewhat preaching to the choir. More than likely you’ve read books where you thought to yourself, “If only he/she existed…” Who hasn’t? For some people, and I count myself among them, it is the fantasy of the character that has us sighing and longing for the physical manifestation of literary character goodness to present themselves to us.
Many tween girls, and even grown women, wish that Edward Cullen (from Twilight if you don’t know) were a real person ; Harry Potter seems to be in the same camp- or at least was.
But when I was young, and discovering “Gone with the Wind”, I fantasized about Rhett Butler and absolutely adored that wretched Scarlett- I mean, how could she not see how amazing that Rhett was? How, I ask you?!
These days I find myself seeking more philosophically minded characters or, conversely, those that are beautifully flawed and human. Would one not be inspired if they actually met Atticus Finch from “To Kill a Mockingbird” and got to speak with him about his case, how afraid he might have been when confronted with the angry mob bent on hanging his client? Or Holden Caufield to find out if he really was in an insane asylum?
There are a whole bevy of characters I would love to converse with, upon the realization that they were in fact alive and it was not a psychotic episode of course. I think, the characters I would be most interested in meeting would be quite a mix as would the reasons. In addition to the two listed above I would love to meet: Jubal Harshaw from Stranger in a Strange Land; Roarke from the “In Death” series (I’m a sucker for Irish accents); Howard Roark and Francisco D’anconia each from a Rand novel; Jane Eyre and Mr. Rochester; Una from Ahab’s Wife; and, since my heart still does little flips when I think of him, Rhett Butler. *sigh*
Who, from books, would you like to meet? Why? Do you have any literary crushes? Philosophically dashing heroes/heroines?