Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Secondary, Not Second Rate

Today’s question from YA Highway: What supporting character from a YA book would you most like to see star in their own novel?

This is such a fun—but hard—question! There are some secondary characters who are so intriguing that I’d like to see a lot more of them: Neville from Harry Potter, Gale from Hunger Games, George from the Song of the Lioness quartet.

And then there are other ‘types’ of characters that, if they had their own story, would really contribute to a fuller understanding of the original story. Fairytale retellings like those by Gregory Maguire (Wicked told from Elphaba the Wicked Witch from The Wizard of Oz’s point of view or Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister told from Cinderella’s stepsister’s point of view) are great examples. And then there’s a new book I’m working on at Harper by Justine Larbalestier and Sarah Rees Brennan called Team Human. They were inspired by Twilight: what if they told a story from the best friend’s point of view? How would she react to her friend dating a vampire? Intriguing questions that bend our perceptions of the original story lend to really thoughtful novels!

So there you have it: so many different supporting characters that definitely deserve—or have shown their worth—in the spotlight!


  1. Team Human - that sounds hilarious! And I agree, Wicked and Confessions are great books that tell the other side of it. Also, Wide Sargasso Sea, though for an older audience.
    Great blog!

  2. @S.L.: WIDE SARGASSO SEA is definitely a great pick. I only didn't include it because I feel like I talk about it (and JANE EYRE, of course!) all the time here!