Today's topic is character driven novels. I love books that are character studies, though some people can find them a little boring because they are usually heavy on the character development and light on the action. Most of the books on my list are classics, since young adult tends to be heavy on the action or romance and not so concentrated on character study. But let me know of any YA books that made your list!Hosted By: The Broke and the Bookish
1. The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger
There's not a lot of action or plot in this book, but you get to know Holden Caulfield inside and out. I can see why people would hate this novel, but I really enjoy character studies and think the writing in this book is just amazing. If you've read this, let me know which side you fall on, love or hate.
2. The Bell Jar, Sylvia Plath
This is one of my all time favorite books. Plath's writing is so gritty and the narrator's voice is so real you forget you're just reading a novel and not thinking the thoughts in the book yourself. The novel is driven solely by Esther's mental break down and you get to experience what's going on in her head. I just reread this book and will be sharing thoughts on my reread soon, but you can read my thoughts from the first reading here.
3. Mrs. Dalloway, Virginia Woolf
Confession: I haven't actually read this yet, but I know with its stream of consciousness style it will be a character study. This is the book to read if you are interested in the stream of consciousness style of novel.
4. This Side of Paradise, F. Scott Fitzgerald
Fitzgerald has created some of the most real characters I have ever read. They have so much depth and are so flawed that it seems like they can't possibly be fiction. This is his most character driven novel I have read of his, it's a semi autobiographical look at his time in college. It's light on plot and action but heavy on characterization. One of my first reviews on this blog was This Side of Paradise. Read it and see how awful it is just for fun!
5. Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
I love the characters in this novel. There are so many great components to this novel, and unlike some of the others on this list it's not a character study so it has a fast moving overall plot. It you haven't read this yet, please do. There's nothing "old" or outdated about this novel. You can read more of my thoughts on this novel here.
6. The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde
Another slow moving plot character study novel. Wilde's writing is of course beautiful and the themes in this novel are executed so well. Even though I love this book, it's not for everyone, so make sure to check out my review before you pick it up as your first piece of Wilde written literature.
7. Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
This book can be a little difficult to get through, but Heathcliff is a literary character you just have to meet. He is so interesting and so over-the-top broody and moody. You can also try this story in graphic novel form like I did for my reread recently.
8. On the Road, Jack Kerouac
Not a lot happens in this book plot wise, but it has some of the most interesting characters from the Beatnik Generation in it. The writing is so straightforward and yet poetic. You can check out my review here for more on this book.
9. Rules of Civility, Amor Towles
This is one of my all time favorite books, and I'm actually planning to reread it next month. It's an adult fiction novel set in the 1930's and the characters are so great. You get to understand the main character so well.
10. Cassandra Clare Books
My only YA selection this week, Clare's books in both Shadow Hunters series have great characters. These books contain a lot of plot and action as well, but my favorite aspect of them is the characters. I love Magnus Bane and the dynamic she created between Will and Jem.