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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Top Ten Lit Jerks


Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Disclaimer: Many of these are going to be from books I've read more recently and that are fresher in my memory.
  1. Odysseus - The Odyssey. So dude 'gets lost' sailing for 10 years, during 7 of which he has a torrid affair with Calypso (don't give me any nonsense about her 'captivating' him with her 'spell,' men are 'weak,' etc etc), all the while his poor wife Penelope is fending off moochy suitors and refusing to remarry she claims in the hopes her loving husband is still alive and will return, but really, none of the moochy suitors are worth committing a conversation to, let alone a lifetime. Cheating dude comes back and decides his wife is still worthy of him because of her steadfast fidelity? Screw off, hypocritical, judgmental Odysseus. She's managed just fine without you. (Yes, I realize that 'times were different' then, but that's a tired excuse for a double standard, is it not?)
  2. Wickham - Pride and Prejudice. A user and a poser.
  3. L. Bob Rife - Snowcrash. He wants to unleash a virus into the world population's brain so that he might control them all. I'd say he should be fairly high up the list in literary jerkitude. Villain, sure, but villains are mostly world-class jerks, no?
  4. Sherman McCoy - Bonfire of the Vanities. He thinks he's the Master of the Universe. Without irony (the character, not the author). Need I say more? 
  5. Crake - Oryx and Crake. He's a little like L. Bob Rife, only with biological instead of computer viruses. 
  6. Jonathan - The Cookbook Collector. I really don't think he was meant to be a world-class canker sore, but indeed he was, with his hypocrisy, idea-stealing and just general egomania.
  7. Lou - A Visit From the Goon Squad. Just read 'Ask Me if I Care' and 'Safari'. Lou provides near step-by-step instructions on how to cause women the most harm, not that they don't somewhat knowingly allow themselves to fall for his cheap charms. 
  8. Old Nick - Room. A kidnapper rapist abuser. 
  9. Howard Roark - The Fountainhead. Selfish taker. Everyone else is too, though. 
  10. Romeo - Romeo & Juliet. Ok, not a novel; a play. And not a jerk, exactly, but definitely a lovesick dumbass. Or more eloquently 'light of brain' and an 'anointed sovereign of sighs and groans' perhaps. (Source: Mug of Shakespearean insults from The Strand, pictured above)

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