Today’s Topic: Villains (favorite, best, worst, lovable, creepiest, most evil, etc.)
Hosted by: That Artsy Reader Girl
Everyone appreciates a good villain. Someone we can love to hate as we root for their selfish, wicked schemes to ultimately fail. After all, what is a hero without an evil counterpart to defeat? However, I strongly believe that no one is past redemption, no matter how bad them seem. I don’t look at people as my enemy. The real villain is that which lies within a person’s heart that motivates their corrupt actions. That is why, I decided to focus on a different type of villain for today’s list.
Dementia –Chasing Someday
I can’t imagine much worse than losing your memories and sense of self. It’s a living death. In Chasing Someday, Chase Thompson grieves the loss of the father he loves to dementia. Plus, he bears the added burden of the expense of care and medicine.
Shame –Pearl in the Sand
Shame is liar that wrecks our self-esteem. I love that this book uses the Biblical Rahab to portray the effect of shame. And I’ve rarely read a more powerful message of truth about shame than this book gives.
Guilt –The Memory of You
In many ways Natalie’s life ends with the death of her twin sister. Her involvement in her sister’s death cripples her with guilt that leads to mental and emotional problems. It prevents her from grieving in a healthy way and negatively affects her relationship with the people she loves. Guilt is like cancer, eating away at the healthy areas of our lives leaving devastation in its’ wake.
Bullying –Sell Out
The news stories of children committing suicide due to bullying breaks my heart. Until reading this book, I didn’t understand how invasive and encompassing bullying can be. It’s made even worse by the 24/7 nature of social media. But it’s also happening with adults as well. When we can’t agree to disagree, when we call names, make threats and wish death on others who hold different opinions, we are part of the problem.
Addiction –Sons of Blackbird Mountain
Addiction of any kind is detrimental to an individual and their relationships. Even when it seems under control or benevolent as is the case with those that are called happy drunks. It wrecks relationships, physical health, trust and even finances. Thor Norgaard finally conquers his addiction to alcohol when he falls for his cousin’s widow in this historical novel.
Emotional Abuse –The Blue Castle
Valancy’s family has emotionally manipulated, ignored and neglected her to the point where she has absolutely no voice. When she finally sees what she has allowed to continue out of fear, she begins to speak up for herself. Only then, does she really start to live freely.
Physical and Sexual Abuse –The End of the World
Abuse warps your and perverts your purpose in life. It shatters your ability to trust and teaches victims that they are unlovable, unworthy and invisible. Often it traps its victims in a vicious cycle they can’t escape. Some abused even end up becoming abusers. This book tells the story of two young people from the foster system who become each other’s safe place when the horror of their lives becomes too much.
Fear –All Made Up
Fear is a liar that distorts the truth. It leads us to make decisions from a distorted perspective usually in the hope of protecting ourselves from pain or rejection. Many times it keeps us from embracing love which is the only thing that can truly conquer fear. This story of two exes who reunite after years apart is a perfect depiction of how fear can prevent you from living your best life.
Anxiety –Murder at the Flamingo
Anxiety is a terrible foe. It’s not something which can generally be conquered by our own will power. It takes a greater strength than our own to overcome. Hamish DeLuca has spent his whole life fighting anxiety, but he refuses to let it dictate his life. I appreciate how this story shows the the hero’s ongoing but successful battle against anxiety.
Lies –Lies We Tell Ourselves
There are few things more insidious than lies, especially when they feel like truth. The two main characters of this story have had their self-identity warped by the lies spoken over them by their parents. This leads them into dysfunctional (and toxic) relationships. It also causes them to make poor life choices, out of self-protection and fear.
Obviously, there are many more villians than the ten I just listed. Can you think of a few more? What are some novels that tackle these kinds of villains?