Wednesday, July 09, 2008


My Favorite Literary Characters.

Rajani has tagged me to write about my favorite literary characters. I am not much into reading these days but do have a small list.

Howard Roark- The highly independent minded architect cum hero of Ian Rand’s ‘The Fountainhead.’ Can’t think of anyone quite like him. Hats off to Ian Rand for creating him.

Atticus- The sweetest father one can have is portrayed so well in Harper Lee’s ‘To kill a mocking bird.’ I read the book years after I lost my dad and found myself missing him more after I read the book and comparing his role in my life with that of Atticus in shaping his children’s lives.

Mandakini- The heroine in Maitrayee Pushpa’s book ‘Idanna mamaha’. The girl’s mother marries another man after her father’s death leaving her paternal grandmother to look after her and returns to visit her years later when she doesn’t even remember the mother’s face. She is brought up with all kinds of negative feelings about her mother. Yet the way she takes up for her would put any thinking individual to shame. At least I did not look at it that way. In this cruel world where a woman is judged at every step the balanced nature shown by Mandakini through out the story stands apart. Maitrayee Pushpa needs to be commended since Mandakini is actually her mouthpiece.

Hassan- Like Rajani I was more impressed by Hassan than Amir in the ‘Kite Runner’ by Hosseni. Such devotion and loyalty! Hard to believe. I shed a few quiet tears for Hassan and wished that he had not died in the end.

Peggoty- The plump maid in Charles Dicken’s David Copperfield who loved him soooo much. As a child I felt happy that she was there for David.

Kundavai- The Chola princess in Kalki’s ‘Ponniyin Selvan. Her intelligence, grace and administrative skills as portrayed in the story served as an inspiration to my young mind. My mother being weak sighted we had read out the story so many times to her and each time we enjoyed it as if we were reading it for the first time.

Heathcliff- I don’t mean his character in Wuthering Heights. There was a sequel written to it by a different author titled ‘Retun to Wuthering Heights’. Unfortunately I forget the name of the author. I’ll check it when I go back since I borrowed it from our college library. The justice done to the character is such that instead of hating the perpetrator of misery to the Earnshaw family you actually end up admiring him for the strength of character. I found the sequel much more interesting than the original.

There are a few others but I’ve forgotten the name of the author or the book so I stop right here.

I tag hillg’mom and Usha to carry this forward.


Prats said...

wow!!! You like Roark too? I just did the same tag...and he tops my list also....I love many of these that you have mentioned...though, the ponniyan selvan, has been mentioned for the second time...and now i'd lvoe to read it...

rajk said...

Thanks HHG!! Good to know your choice! BTW, I had no idea Wuthering Heights had a sequel. Do you remember the hindi TV serial based on this book? I remember it was good..
And the main concept of Fountainhead is the same as in Hindi movie "Naach".

srijithunni said...

Nice list, Hip G'ma, Though I 've known only Hassan and Peggotty. Both beautiful characters. Hassan's silent, calm and selflessness is a great inspiration.

Yet to read mocking bird, that you recommended long back.

@rajk : is that true.? I thought Naach was a bad movie.?

Have Fun, Take Care and God Bless!

rajk said...

Srijith, Naach was a flop, which to most people means Bad... However, it was not that bad...The theme was not very common...About an idealist and a compromiser..That's what is similar to Fountainhead.

Phoenix said...

Love Roark, the best thing Ayn Rand's done in her life!!
Like ur list, inspiring :)

Preethi said...

very interesting list.. agree with Hassan and Kundavai... Kundavai is on mine too!!

hillgrandmom said...

Will definitely do this tag and faster than I usually take:) Have been thinking about this since I saw it on another blog.

Teena said...

I write for a silver's magazine called Harmony, brought out by India Today. Am writing a do-it-yourself story on blogging for seniors and need to interview you. So pls sms ur number to me 9313553180

WhatsInAName said...

Just saw your post that says you are in California! Enjoy and have a great time :)
Your list here makes me realise what an unread ignoramus I am!! Need to do somethiung now :)

Hip Grandma said...

hi all,
feels nice to read your comments.Rather busy now with a 17 day old g'daughter to pamper.will be right back in less than a month's time.

teena:I am right now in USA and will return on the 8th of August.You can email your queries to me if you want to at
Alternatively you can call me up at my US no.that I can e mail to you.

Tys on Ice said...

this is so weird....why does all women like this roark guy?...iam going to do this tag one of these days but i keep forgetting all the characters names...iam planning on reading some of those books u had mentioned...

i too like hassan better.