I love strong secondary characters in books. It’s one of the things that’ll make me love a book more or could even save it if I’m not that into it otherwise. So I thought I’d make a post and give my favorites a little shout-out! (Note: I haven’t finished reading all of these series so if one of these characters becomes ridiculous or unbearable then don’t tell me! Haha)
Sevro (Red Rising)
SEVRO. I knew it from the moment I met him in the story that he was someone to keep an eye on. A bit crazy, but not. And in the end he becomes an invaluable ally. I mean, oh my gosh, Darrow was an awesome lead character it’s true, but Sevro is epic. I’m not saying I like one more than the other but the two as a pair…they could be unstoppable. But a lot of characters died in this book and I’m sure loads more will die before the trilogy concludes and I just really can’t have Sevro be one of the fallen (hence why the second book has been gathering dust waiting for me to finally read it).
Mister Kindly (Nevernight)
A mysterious shadow cat that attaches himself to a little girl who grows into a deadly assassin. I definitely grew to love Mister Kindly as he added narration and footnotes to the story. We never find out what he is exactly, but he was my favorite part of this book (sorry Mia! Lol). With most of the characters on this list I can’t exactly place my finger on why they’re my favorite or why they stuck out to me, it’s just a feeling. And that’s exactly how Mister Kindly ended up as a favorite, it’s just a feeling. And I’m excited to read Godsgrave if only for more from Mister Kindly.
Haymitch (Hunger Games Trilogy)
I specifically love Woody Harrelson’s version in the movies. The book character was good but Woody really made him memorable. Haymitch is a drunk turned functioning alcoholic turned mostly-sober mastermind. He’s such a real portrayal of a survivor of war. I mean, sent as a kid into an arena to kill or be killed? Who walks out of that unchanged in some way? And despite his almost constant drunkenness towards the beginning of the story he knows what he’s doing and becomes an awesome mentor. I think he always could have been a great mentor for the tributes but it took a boy and a girl willing to truly fight to shake him from his stupor and help them. I liked Katniss in the books but honestly, I liked Haymitch more in the movies.
The Best Friend
Kenji (Shatter Me Trilogy)
I love Kenji. I know Tahereh Mafi is extending the Shatter Me series (something I doubt I’ll partake in because I’m actually happy with just the trilogy) and if she dares to hurt Kenji (even though I know I just said I don’t plan on reading the new books) I will be very upset because that is simply not allowed. All three characters in this section of my top faves are obviously all people I think would make excellent best friends if I ever got to choose, but Kenji was the first character I read in a series who I immediately wanted in my friend circle. He’s snarky, hilarious, caring, loyal, and fierce. He’s just awesome and that’s all there is to it.
Azriel (A Court of Thorns and Roses Trilogy)
Yes, yes, I am Team Azriel for those of you who are part of the Azriel vs. Lucien debate. Look, I like Lucien (except for in the second book, ugh) but I love Azriel more. First of all everyone thought Elain was crazy except Azriel who didn’t jump to obvious conclusions and instead tried to help her. Also even though he gets the smallest role out of the three boys (Rhysand, Cassian, and Azriel) he’s actually one of the strongest and most important (and the coolest). And getting to see more of his personality come forth in the third book just made him even more intriguing. I can’t say exactly what it is about him that draws me in, but it’s just…something. Maybe it’s because he’s so casually overlooked and that makes him a puzzle. We only gets tiny bits and pieces of his past and who he is and what he does and I want more! He’s sassy, clever, mysterious, kind, patient, deadly, and loyal. Rhysand is a main character so between the secondary characters I’d want Azriel on my team for sure. And also Amren.
Nikolai (Grisha Trilogy)
To be honest the Grisha Trilogy slowed down in the middle for me and it just wasn’t gripping my interest like it had with the first book, but even so I loved Nikolai and absolutely looked forward to any scene with him in it. He’s clever, funny, inventive, straightforward, untamed yet poised. He’s a prince taking matters into his own hands for the country he loves and just something about his overall personality won me over at once. I am so excited that he’s going to be getting his own spin-off series!
Silyen (Gilded Cage)
DeMalo (Blood Red Road)
Both of these characters get hardly any time on the page and yet they instantly pique your interest and draw you in, even if what you’re sensing may be the signs of a villain. Truly, Silyen only seems to pop up once in a blue moon whenever it is convenient for him to be a part of the main plot line. While all the characters are busy, he merely slips in and out of the shadows working on a plan of his own, something secretive, dark, and kept from our sight. DeMalo gets only a few sentences in the entire book and yet from the moment he stepped onto the page I knew he was someone to keep an eye on. He just had a presence. I’ve only read the first book so I don’t know who he turns out to be yet but he surely must be somebody.
Benjamin (Animal Farm)
If I remember correctly Benjamin represents the scholars in Russia. Benjamin is a cynical donkey, he’s clever and understands what is happening to the farm but he doesn’t go out of his way to stop it. More than that he’s cynical about everything. He doesn’t believe they’d be better off without the Joneses, he doesn’t believe what the pigs preach or that they can make the farm better, and he doesn’t believe that the other animals will ever be able to defeat the pigs, stand on their own, or bring the farm into true freedom and equality.
Basically he’s not a hero, but he’s not a villain. He’s simply living on a farm with a bunch of animals who are either followers or leaders, who are either gullible and desperate, or manipulative and cruel. I’ve always liked Benjamin, perhaps because ever since I read this book in school he was a character I instantly understood.
Dallas (The Outsiders)
Dallas understands his place in the world. He sees the injustices and just accepts them as the way life is even if he doesn’t agree with them. He’s a rebel, but not a revolutionary. He knows how people see him but he doesn’t feel compelled to change just to make others like him better. He’s hard, harsh, strong, wild, brave, but not a fool, and when it comes down to it he’s fiercely loyal, desperate, drowning, and good. He’s such a complicated character and I cry every time I read this book.
Wilf (Chaos Walking Trilogy)
Wilf is such an underrated character. Generally I say that Mayor Prentiss is my favorite character (or at least one of them) in this series but as the villain he’s not really a secondary character. And besides, as clever as the Mayor is even he overlooks poor sweet Wilf. No one takes Wilf seriously but he’s not stupid. He might not be filled with adrenaline and fury but he’s kind, loyal, and he sees far more than anyone ever suspects.
Hagrid (Harry Potter Series)
Some people aren’t huge fans of Hagrid and to that I raise my fists, knock back my chair and say “Come at me!” I love Hagrid. Sure sometimes he makes mistakes or comes across as a bit doofy, but come on! It’s Hagrid! He established a place in my heart in the very first book of this series. He’s fierce, loyal, soft-hearted, and you couldn’t ask for a better friend (despite his hazardous love of monstrous creatures), but it really is the small things that make Hagrid so great, like thinking to bring Harry a birthday cake, thinking to put in the work to make Harry that scrapbook of photos of Harry’s parents… I’m a huge fan of Hagrid’s and I refuse to hear insults against him (unless made by myself because that’s true friendship of course haha).
I literally only just realized, after typing this whole post, that every character I chose is a dude. What is with that?? But I can’t change my answers because they’re my honest opinions. To be fair if this were a post on my Top 10 Main Characters then those would be almost all female (I can’t leave out Kaz and Darrow but the rest would probably be female leads). Anyway, so strange haha.
Who are your favorite secondary characters?