Tag: Matilda

Lucius & Draco, fucked up father & fucked up progeny

The 7 Baddest Dads from Literature

Bad dads are a massive inspiration when it comes to literature and media, a broad spectrum of general douchebaggery that ranges from King Triton’s overbearing & possessive nature to Anakin Skywalker’s… well, everything. Luke, I am the source of all your issues going into adulthood! The ones that aren’t actively bad are frequently absent or neglectful, perfect fodder for creating plot conflict or generating sympathy for the protagonist. So, happy Father’s Day weekend to the dads that don’t suck! While we could never compile each and every one of literature’s shittiest dads, these seven will make even the most mediocre among you glow in comparison.

(Obviously, spoiler alert for all the books featured below!)

 

 

1. KING LAIUS

OEDIPUS Rex

 

 

Oedipus, the original motherfucker

Image Via Tv Tropes

 

 

Yup, it’s Oedipus’ dad—one of the only dads worse than Oedipus himself, whose behavior invited some intense scrutiny upon his two daughters, Ismene and the badass Antigone. It’s pretty f*cked up to abandon your child on top of a mountain, even if you HAVE heard he’s going to kill you and then nail your sexy wife, Jacosta. We all know that Oedipus’ fulfilment of the prophecy actually came about because of this blunder: not knowing his parentage, he murdered his father and bedded his mother without any recognition of what he’d done. But even if you’re pro-hillside-abandonment and think it was a justifiable move, why didn’t Laius just kill the kid and save everyone a lot of trouble???

 

2. King Lear

King Lear

 

 

Ian McKellen as King Lear

Image Via PBS

 

 

With enormous power comes an enormous chance of being a d*ck to your children. We’ve heard of divorced daddies’ cliche-riddled ploys to buy their children’s love. Lear actually expects his three daughters to buy his love, saying that Goneril loves him twice as much as Reagan because she offers twice the number of soldiers. He also calls his daughters “unnatural hags,” which we imagine is an untrue statement, given the lack of Sharpie brows and lip fillers back in Shakespeare’s day. Also, maybe Reagan and Goneril would have gotten along better (and hated their father a lot less) if Lear hadn’t obviously favored Cordelia. Some people say the play is an exploration of nature versus nurture, but there wasn’t really a whole lot of nurturing.

 

3. Humbert Humbert

Lolita

 

 

Humbert Humbert & Lo

Image Via Heard Tell

 

 

And here’s Humbert Humbert at number three, proving that this list is not in order of sh*ttiness. Humbert Squared is an evil pedophile who tricks a woman into marrying him so that he can have easy access to her twelve-year-old daughter, Lo—a girl he calls Lolita. When the girl’s mother discovers Humbert’s perverted motives in his journal, she runs to spread the news and is hit by an oncoming car. Humbert destroys the journal pages and takes legal custody of Lo, a position of power he abuses to coerce her into sex with gifts and threats that life would be far worse in an orphanage.

 

4. LUCIUS MALFOY

The Harry Potter Series

 

 

Lucius Malfoy, shit dad

Image Via Elite Daily

 

 

My parents sure didn’t let me get a tattoo when I was in my senior year of high school. Now, obviously that’s secondary to raising your child in a cult centered around the concept of blood purity. While every parent has a responsibility to keep their children safe, Lucius got involved with Magic Manson, an irresistible leader so dangerous that he’d be safer in jail than facing Voldy’s wrath. (Not to mention, of course, that’s he’s obviously a massive racist and literal slaveowner who mistreated Dobby.) He also tried to force his son to murder someone, either by dangling the carrot of his approval in front of Draco’s nose or by reminding him, helpfully, that Voldemort would likely kill Draco if he failed.

 

5. MR. WORMWOOD

Matilda

 

 

Mr. Wormwood, ass

image Via Matilda Fan Wiki

 

 

Ideally, fathers would share words of wisdom with their children. Apparently, some say: “I’m right & you’re wrong. I’m big & you’re small, and there’s nothing you can do about it.” Ideally, fathers would embody the values that they want from their children. Apparently, some sell dangerously broken cars to customers that will run for ten minutes and then break down. Mr. Wormwood is a verbally abusive sh*tbag who happily abandons his child with a random schoolteacher he doesn’t personally know. Is Matilda better off with Miss Honey? Um, obviously. Is it still pretty messed up that he didn’t care at all about keeping his only daughter? ABSOLUTELY.

 

6. ALPHONSO

The Color Purple

 

 

'The Color Purple' Alphonso, leering

Image via The Color Purple Blogspot

 

Here’s a heads up that this depiction of parental abuse is pretty graphic. Considering that Humbert Humbert is on the list and THIS one needs a disclaimer, you can imagine the level of violence. Alphonso beats and violates his daughter, Celie, which has resulted twice in pregnancy. The first child, he took to the woods and murdered. Her father also steals the second child and takes a second wife—though he still keeps Celie close and abuses her physically. Despite his fixation on Celie, Alphonso frequently calls his daughter ugly and gives her away to a man who doesn’t love her. And the icing on the f*cked-up cake? Alphonso isn’t really Celie’s father: he’s her stepfather, pretending to be her father in order to inherit her deceased mother’s property.

 

 

7. VALENTINE MORGENSTERN

The mORTAL inSTRUMENTS sERIES

 

 

Valentine Morgenstern

Image Via FREEFORM

 

 

The devil’s in the details, and Valentine certainly didn’t miss the smallest one. He fed demon blood instead of Gerber’s fruit goo to his firstborn Jonathan Christopher, basically guaranteeing that the newborn would be an unhinged, child-murdering sociopath for the rest of his life. After his wife ran off with their daughter, Valentine found a RANDOM CHILD (Jace), convinced Jace that he was Jace’s real father, and then faked his own death violently in front of the kid. When Valentine reappears and finds Jace and his daughter Clary, he lets them (falsely!!!) believe they’re biological siblings—which is definitely a problem, since they’ve been dating. Oh yeah, and Valentine also murdered Jace’s pet hawk before telling the boy: “to love is to destroy, and to be loved is to be the one destroyed.” Is that the reason Jace has a reputation of sleeping around? Who knows? It’s not like that kid ever saw a therapist.

 

 

Featured Image Via Tor.

10 of the Coolest Heroines in Fiction

For much of history, much like in real life, female characters in fiction were sidelined, often not promoted to the front like their male counterparts until recently. But this has begun to change, with strong and nuanced female character coming to the forefront of genres like fantasy, science fiction,  historical and more! And even looking back throughout literary history, there are numerous examples of kickass women who paved the way forward. Here some of the best, counting down from ten!

 

10. Offred- The Handmaid’s Tale

 

Offred from the Handmaid's Tale sits in a red dress with a table and bottle of milk before her

Image Via Amazon

The Handmaid’s Tale tells of a future where women have been reduced to the role of reproductive slaves in a society run by a religious order, made into the property of men and forbidden from reading, writing, or holding positions of power. Offred, whose real name is June, is a woman who dreams of a better life and despite all the hardship she endures, she instills the spark of rebellion, piece by piece, through her actions and inspires women around her. She may not be an action hero but it’s clear she’s the strongest character, holding power over the men who claim to own her.

 

9. Sabriel- Sabriel

 

Sabriel is a young woman with a blue outfit standing with a thin sword against a grey hair

Image via Goodreads

In a world where the dead walk the earth, one young women holds the key to countering the dark evil rising from the depths of the underworld. Enter Sabriel, an eighteen-year-old girl who is finishing her work at an all female college where she sees a vision of the dead walking out from the other realm beyond her own to infest the earth. Sent by her father to stop a group of Necromancers, Sabriel is fierce, ferocious, but also very human and showcases a quiet inner strength that allows her to overcome Death itself.

 

8. Nancy Drew-Nancy Drew mystery stories

 

Nancy Drew, clad in a green dress sits in a swamp as she attempts to open a clock

Image via Tvline

Nancy Drew was created in 1930s but nevertheless emerged to become an icon for countless generations. A young girl working as an amateur detective, Nancy Drew constantly went headfirst into danger, exploring abandoned castles, creepy mansions, slimy swamps, and dark basements to solve mystery after mystery. The character has been updated to become stronger and older as the years went by, letting her evolve while also staying true to her roots, always a girl as brave as any boy and sniffing out the next case to crack.

 

7. Matilda- Matilda

 

Matilda stands on a bed with a crafty smirk

Image via Entertainment 

Another young girl, Matilda emerged as one of the best characters of Roald Dahl’s novels who has a love of reading and kindness while also possessing rad telekinesis. She overcomes adversity not through brute force, contrasting her nemesis, the Trunchbull, a massive tyrant of a headmaster who bullies the children in her care. Matilda’s mind is her greatest asset and is gleeful to see her emerge as the smartest person in the room. You can’t help but cheer as she overcomes the Trunchbull, letting her mind flow freely to literally grab the brute of a woman and give her a taste of her own medicine.

 

6. Princess Cimorene- Dealing with Dragons

 

A princess and a dragon stand side by side as they have tea and cake

Image via Wikipedia

This princess turns the classic trope of a fair damsel getting kidnapped by a dragon and rescued by a knight on its head. Cimorene runs away from her kingdom where her parents try to make her marry an undesirable prince, runs to a dragon, and takes up a job under the dragon’s wing. Cimorene takes charge of her life from the first chapter, showcasing her strength, wit, and skill to get a life she wants, not the one the story has set out for her. And she gets to be best friends with a dragon, which is badass.

 

5. Isabella Trent- A Natural History of Dragons

 

A black and white photograph of Lady Trent, both older and young

Image Via Book Reviews

Written as a memoir by supposed famous dragon naturalist Lady Trent, A Natural History of Dragons chronicles the adventures of Isabella Trent who strives to become the authority of dragonology. Written as a bookish, very English sort of woman, Isabella is prim and proper, erudite and sophisticated while possessing a true passion for the dragons of the world. She would sooner examine a dragon up close than scream in terror, being truly fascinated and possessing a scholarly disposition that makes her quite lovable. It’s wonderful to watch her evolve as the series go on, seeing her adventures with dragons and showcasing how she is the most brilliant mind in the room.

 

4. Katniss Everdeen- The Hunger Games

 

Katniss Everdeen stands in a jumpsuit with a bow of arrows on her back

Image via Forbes

Thrust into The Hunger Games, a bloodsport that pits her against teens from fellow Districts, Katniss Everdeen rises to the occasion to take control of her destiny. Refusing to play by the Capital’s rules, she fights against the game at every opportunity, first refusing to kill her supposed ‘enemy’ Peeta at the game’s end, threatening to kill herself if the Capital doesn’t let them both live. Eventually, she becomes the leader of a rebellion against the District entirely, becoming a full fledged warrior as the Districts rise around her to overthrow President Snow. Katniss is a champion for inner strength, fierceness, and stone cold badassery.

 

3. Scout Finch- To Kill a Mockingbird

 

Scout Finch, a young girl leans on the table with her elbows

Image via Pininterest

Scout is great because of how real she feels. She narrates the book from her POV, showcasing her child’s view of the world, making us fall in love with her mannerisms and her fiesty attitude. She’s curious, always ready to get into a fight, and a tomboy, contrasting with the small town atmosphere around her that disapproves of her unladylike ways. She is at once relatable, yet always reminding us she’s a child and has a lot of growing up to do. But Scout is always wonderful, a great protagonist who showcases the spirit of a women beneath her childish exterior.

 

2. Arya Stark- A Song of Ice and Fire

 

Arya stands with a coin in hand as Sander Clegane lounges in the background around a campfire

Image Via the Wrap

One of the protagonist of Game of ThronesArya began as an immature girl, the third child of Ned Stark who was interested in very unladylike things, being fiesty and independent. But as the series progresses, she grows into a fully fledged warrior, swearing revenge on those who killed her family and becoming one of the Faceless Men, learning their skills as an assassin. She wields an awesome sword named Needle and ventures across Westeros, trying to complete her list of named targets. Extremely popular with fans, Arya is vicious despite her small size and should never be underestimated.

 

1. Hermione Granger- Harry Potter

 

Hermione stands in her school uniform against a brown backdrop

Image via Vox

One of the iconic figures in the series, Hermione is arguably more capable than Harry, being an intelligent teenager with a gift for magic, an aptitude for history, and often described as a walking encyclopedia. Favoring brains over brawn, she comes up with the plans throughout the series and often represents a clear headed contrast to the more impulsive Ron or even Harry. She isn’t without her flaws, with her fear of failure driving her to nearly kill herself as she drowns herself in schoolwork, but she always prove herself a strong young woman, ready to smack anyone who challenges or insults her.

 

 

Featured Image Via Amazon

5 of Your Favorite Bookworm Characters from Literature!

August 9th is Book Lovers Day! As a book-obsessed kid, I often found myself latching on to bookworms within the books themselves. It’s awesome to read a book and find your own passions reflected in a character. Here are a few amazing book lovers we find in our pages (and screens)!

 

 

 


 

 

Hermione Granger

(Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling)

hermione

Image Via Pintrest

 

[…] She was dashing back, an enormous old book in her arms.

“I never thought to look in here!” she whispered excitedly. “I got this out of the library weeks ago for a bit of light reading.”

Light?” said Ron, but Hermione told him to be quiet.

 

 


 

 

Matilda Wormwood

(Matilda by Roald Dahl)

matilda

Image Via Stylist

 

“So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.” 

 

 


 

 

Tyrion Lannister

(A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin)

tyrion

Image Via ThoughtCatalogue

 

“I have a realistic grasp of my own strengths and weaknesses. My mind is my weapon. My brother has his sword, King Robert has his warhammer, and I have my mind… and a mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge. That’s why I read so much, Jon Snow.” 

 

 


 

 

Liesel Meminger

(The Book Thief by Markus Zusak)

liesel

Image Via Pintrest

 

“She said it out loud, the words distributed into a room that was full of cold air and books. Books everywhere! Each wall was armed with overcrowded yet immaculate shelving. It was barely possible to see paintwork. There were all different styles and sizes of lettering on the spines of the black, the red, the gray, the every-colored books. It was one of the most beautiful things Liesel Meminger had ever seen.

With wonder, she smiled.

That such a room existed!” 

 

 


 

 

Klaus Baudelaire

(A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket)

klaus

Image Via The UPOU Book Club

 

“Klaus sighed, and opened a book, and as at so many other times when the middle Baudelaire child did not want to think about his circumstances, he began to read.” 

 

 


 

Belle

(Beauty and the Beast)

belle

Image Via Oh My Disney

 

“Look there she goes, that girl is so peculiar
I wonder if she’s feeling well
With a dreamy, far-off look
And her nose stuck in a book
What a puzzle to the rest of us is Belle…”

 

 

 

Featured Image Via Wattpad

ms honey

The 8 Most Heartwarming Quotes From ‘Matilda’

Roald Dahl is a literary mastermind whose enchanting stories and characters have painted our childhoods and left a trail of colorful nostalgia. Through his imaginary worlds, Dahl has been one of the most influential teachers. His heartwarming lessons shape growing minds of readers everywhere and have inspired many to immerse themselves in literature.

 

Out of the thousands of characters introduced in children’s books, Matilda Wormwood is the best. By far. It’s a true fact. Her resilient nature and appetite for literature molded her into one of the most memorable and influential characters of my childhood and I’m sure that of many other readers.

 

Here are eight quotes from Matilda that will revive your love of reading!

 

 

1. So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea.

 

2. All the reading she had done had given her a view of life that they had never seen.

 

3. Sometimes Matilda longed for a friend, someone like the kind, courageous people in her books.

 

4. It was pleasant to take a hot drink up to her room and have it beside her as she sat in her silent room reading in the empty house in the afternoons.

 

5. The books transported her into new worlds and introduced her to amazing people who lived exciting lives. She went on olden-day sailing ships with Joseph Conrad. She went to Africa with Ernest Hemingway and to India with Rudyard Kipling. She travelled all over the world while sitting in her little room in an English village.

 

6. ‘Mr Hemingway says a lot of things I don’t understand, Matilda said to her. ‘Especially about men and women. But I loved it all the same. The way he tells it I feel I am right there on the spot watching it all happen.’

 

7. And don’t worry about the bits you can’t understand. Sit back and allow the words to wash around you, like music.

 

8. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.

 

via GIPHY

 

Featured image via TriStar Pictures/IMDB

This Is Fine meme

7 Happy Books to Distract You From the Impending Apocalypse

So the threat of nuclear war is ever-growing, and the Earth may destroy us via natural disasters long before nuclear war has, to paraphrase Winston Churchill, had a chance to get its pants on. Anyway, here’s a list of genuinely happy, hopeful and uplifting books to help you escape the real world.

 

1. Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery

 

Anne and Diana laughing

Via Giphy

 

Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery is one of the most joyous, amusing, and hopeful books there is. It’s just true. Anne is an absolute delight with her emotional, hilarious responses to situations (breaking a slate over her bothersome classmate’s head, declaring herself to be in ‘the depths of despair’) and her excellent renaming of almost every place she finds herself in (Barry’s Pond becomes ‘The Lake of Shining Waters’). Anne overcomes hardship using her imagination, which sounds corny but is actually great. The book also contains a wonderful depiction of female friendship between Anne and her ‘bosom friend’ Diana Barry. 

 

2. Pollyanna by Eleanor H. Porter

 

pollyanna

Via Amino Apps

 

Pollyanna as a name is synonymous with being overly optimistic to the point of being very irritating, but the character is not very irritating. She is in fact very sweet and I won’t hear a word against her. She plays the ‘glad game’ whenever she is faced with a disappointing situation. 

 

3. Matilda by Roald Dahl

 

Matilda

Via GyfCat

 

Matilda is the wonderful story of a telekenetic genius child who overcomes her disastrous upbringing (or lack thereof) and a terrifying school principal to become happy and loved. What’s not to feel happy about?

 

4. Chocolat by Joanne Harris

 

chocolat

Via Giphy

 

Chocolat centers around an unconventional chocolate maker who brings new life to a small French village. It’s so wholesome. And the movie is a dream to watch if you’ve got a lot of chocolate to get through. 

 

5. The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery

 

cover

Image Via Vulpus Libris 

 

Maurizio Bono of Italian paper La Repubblica wrote that ‘the formula that made more than half a million readers in France fall in love with [The Elegance of the Hedgehog] has, among other ingredients: intelligent humor, fine sentiments, an excellent literary and philosophical backdrop, taste that is sophisticated but substantial.’ What more do you need?

 

6. A Mango-Shaped Space by Wendy Mass

 

Cover for book

Image Via Wikipedia 

 

A thirteen-year-old girl struggles with her synesthesia, meaning she can hear, see, and taste colors. However, once she is diagnosed she goes on a heartwarming journey of self acceptance. 

 

7. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

 

pride and prejudice

Via Buzzfeed

 

It’s a classic. It makes everybody feel good. It just does. Except for Mark Twain. For some reason, he really hated it but whatever. Both the film and the BBC series are also extremely comforting.

 

Featured Image Via The Mary Sue