25 Most Memorable Characters of 2020

20 relatable (and hilarious) memes about being in love with a fictional  character! | Book memes, Percy jackson, Books

It’s going to be hard to narrow it down to just twenty-five, I’ve read a lot of good books with interesting characters this year. I’ll try to keep this list as versatile as possible and include a lot of different genres.


  1. Standish Treadwell (Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner)
Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner
I loved this kid’s narrative voice and I really cared about him by the end of the story.

2. Rose Howard (Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin)

Amazon.com: Rain Reign (Ala Notable Children's Books. Middle Readers)  eBook: Martin, Ann M.: Kindle Store
This girl would drive me crazy in real life, but she has such a good heart.

3. Trina Goldberg-Oneka (The Seep by Chana Porter)

The Seep by Chana Porter
I wish this character had more of a backstory but I still really liked her. She was also a trans woman who’s gender identity was not the focus of the story which was a nice change.

4. Mei (Small Beauty by jia qing wilson-yang)

Small Beauty - Metonymy Press
Another transgender protagonist. I’ve really read a lot of good GLBT+ books this year.

5. Hank (We Could Be Heroes by Margaret Finnegan)

See the source image
I love this kid. Flawed but smart and compassionate, he was a great portrayal of someone on the autism spectrum.

6. Alex (See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng)

See You in the Cosmos: Cheng, Jack: 9780399186370: Amazon.com: Books
This kid was also definitely on the spectrum, even though in his case he wasn’t diagnosed. Alex is funny and extraordinary intelligent and has a huge heart.

7. Erin (Please Don’t Hug Me by Kay Kerr)

Please Don't Hug Me by Kay Kerr
Erin was awesome. I related to her right away.

8. Tatty (Tatty by Christine Dwyer Hickey)

Tatty by Christine Dwyer Hickey
A smart kid trapped in a horrible family situation, my heart really went out to this girl.

9. Aidan (Flamer by Mike Curato)

Amazon.com: Flamer (9781627796415): Curato, Mike, Curato, Mike: Books
The author did a really good job developing Aidan’s character and making you care about him despite the brevity of this graphic novel.

10. Xiomara (The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo)

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
Xiomara was awesome! She was so well-developed and she felt like a real person. I felt for her so much.

11. Ben Arnold (We by Michael Landweber)

We: Landweber, Michael: 9781603811668: Amazon.com: Books
Ben was very well-developed and even though he was a really flawed character you couldn’t help but root for him.

12. Lou Montgomery (Tune it Out by Jamie Sumner)

Amazon.com: Tune It Out (9781534457003): Sumner, Jamie: Books
This was the first book I’ve read that’s specifically about SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder) but Lou is a strong character who’s undoubtedly more than her diagnosis.

13. Ivy Aberdeen (Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World by Ashley Herring Blake)

Ivy Aberdeen's Letter to the World - Kindle edition by Blake, Ashley  Herring. Children Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.

A strong, authentic, and heart-breakingly vulnerable pre-teen girl.

14. Frankie (Tornado Brain by Cat Patrick)

Tornado Brain: Patrick, Cat: 9781984815316: Amazon.com: Books
I know this list has a lot of characters who are on the autism spectrum on it, but I still didn’t think the list would be complete without Frankie. She was a compelling protagonist who was a lot stronger than people gave her credit for.

15. Sandy Sanders (King and the Dragonflies by Kacen Callender)

King and the Dragonflies by Kacen Callender
This book was full of good characters but Sandy was my favorite. He had such a hard life but he never let his circumstances destroy him.

16. Joey Pigza (Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key & Joey Pigza Loses Control by Jack Gantos)

Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key (Joey Pigza Books): Gantos, Jack:  9780064408332: Amazon.com: Books
You can’t help but root for this kid, he’s such a mess but his heart is in the right place. His character development is really good too.

17. Jakabob Botch (Mister B. Gone by Clive Barker)

Mister B. Gone - Wikipedia
Unlike the other characters on this list, the protagonist of this book has no redeeming qualities, but he’s a unique and unforgettable narrator.

18. All the Kids (The Echo Park Castaways by M.G. Hennessey)

Amazon.com: The Echo Park Castaways eBook: Hennessey, M. G.: Kindle Store
They were all amazing. I can’t pick just one.

19. Jack (Come Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire)

Come Tumbling Down (Wayward Children, 5): McGuire, Seanan: 9780765399311:  Amazon.com: Books
Jack is definitely my favorite character in this series. She’s so out there but she’s awesome.

20. Emma-Jean Lazarus (Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree by Lauren Tarshis)

Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree - Kindle edition by Tarshis, Lauren.  Children Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.
Emma-Jean rules. I wish I could have had a friend like her growing up.

21. Billy Pilgrim (Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut)

Amazon.com: Slaughterhouse-Five: A Novel (Modern Library 100 Best Novels)  (9780812988529): Vonnegut, Kurt: Books
This guy was such an odd duck. I’ve never seen a character quite like him.

22. Germain (Soft in the Head by Marie-Sabine Roger)

Soft in the Head: Roger, Marie-Sabine, Wynne, Frank: 9781782271581:  Amazon.com: Books
I have a weakness for oddball characters. Both this book and the film adaptation (‘My Afternoons with Marguerite’) are fantastic.

23. Calliope (Forget Me Not by Ellie Terry)

Amazon.com: Forget Me Not (9781250096272): Terry, Ellie: Books
I felt for this girl so much. Her mom and her classmates sucked, she deserved better.

24. Snapdragon (Snapdragon by Kat Leyh)

Snapdragon |
This girl was a bit of an outsider but I loved how unapologetically herself she was. I also related to her unconventional and slightly morbid interests.

25. Molly Southbourne (The Murders of Molly Southbourne & The Survival of Molly Southbourne by Tade Thompson)

THE MURDERS OF MOLLY SOUTHBOURNE: Thompson, Tade: 9780765397133:  Amazon.com: Books
I love a good anti-hero(ine?) This character is so fucked-up but her bizarre upbringing and worldview are fascinating.

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