Top 5

Bookish: Top 5 Wednesday – Characters You Wouldn’t Want to Trade Places With


‘Tis another Wednesday, yes ’tis and so with another Wednesday we have another Top 5 Wednesday blog post! This time delivered to you… on a Wednesday! Will the wonders never cease!

This is the final ‘rewind’ offering and so I looked back in the archives and have decided upon ‘Characters You Wouldn’t Want to Trade Places With’ from September 2016.

A little angst and a little suffering makes for good stories but what about when it’s major angst and major suffering? Sometimes my poor little heart just can’t take it.

Whether it’s because of the world they live in or the events that they have lived through these are the 5 characters you couldn’t pay me to swap with.

These are not spoiler free so read on at your peril.



Tess of the d’Uberville’s is a sad story about the cruelty of life and how it is other people and their supposed ‘morals’ that can actually cause the most harm.

Our poor Tess goes through rape (or seduction) by her employer Alec, which results in her pregnancy. The baby gets sick. The baby dies. Tess grieves. No one cares.

She manages to have a brief period of happiness where she falls in love, gets married and confesses her past to her husband, Angel. He leaves her. Tess grieves. No one cares.

Tess and her family eventually end up destitute after her father’s death. Her mother bullies Tess into becoming Alec’s mistress. Tess doesn’t want to, really doesn’t want to. Her mother really doesn’t care.

Angel comes back, Tess murders Alec out of desperation and Tess hangs for it. You get the feeling no one cares.

Wowsers. Poor Tess. If there is anyone I want to hug it’s her.



It’s easy to forget when you see a bright red dress and hear a few jaunty show-tunes that Nancy from Oliver Twist is only a teenager. The musical also makes it easy to forget that she is a prostitute who was groomed into that role as a child, is an alcoholic and is being domestically abused. The book doesn’t make it easy to forget that.

Oh, Nancy. No one is kind to Nancy and Nancy has become unkind but… there is a glimmer of warmth and love still in her and when she realises that Oliver has a real chance at a decent life away from Fagin’s gang she does her best to make sure he gets it.

We all know how this goes.

Miserable life and miserable death. No, I would not like to trade places thank you.

I would also like to hug Nancy.



Not one person isn’t suffering in Westeros. Ok, maybe Joffrey who was having an awesome time before he died.

I could say with honesty that I wouldn’t want to trade places with anyone in the Song of Ice and Fire series because I truly wouldn’t. However I’ve gone for Sansa Stark not only because of what she suffered through (book and TV versions) but also because of the hate she gets from readers/ viewers.

In the books Sansa is a lady of a noble household who, in the society she lives in, is expected to get married to someone of equal nobility, be the lady of his household and have children. She has been taught this her entire life and this is what she wants. But let me say this again – she has been taught this. This is the role she is expected to play.

She is also a child. A child who watches her father get beheaded in front of her, is held hostage by the people who killed him, is beaten by the person she is supposed to be married to, is threatened with rape, is lusted over by unsavoury men and is viewed as a pawn by other noble households who value her for her name.

She is a product of her upbringing (sheltered) and a victim of her society (misogynistic) and is a young, naive girl (to begin with anyway) who is used and abused and people… hate her for it. 

Sansa, come here – you need a hug.




I’ve gone Victorian and I’ve gone medieval fantasy. Let’s go forward. Let’s go dystopian.

Whilst I want to bang on about my love of the book The Handmaid’s Tale this isn’t the point of the post. What I will say is that one character I never, ever, ever want to swap with is Offred. Or any of the handmaid’s. Or any of the women full stop.

You have the choice of government sanctioned rape and forced child-bearing, being sent to the colonies to clear up toxic waste before dying painfully or forced prostitution for the titillation of wealthy men. Before this all your rights are slowly yet gradually stripped away from you. Your children are removed from you. If you become a handmaid those children are taken from you too.

I said ‘choice’ but it’s not choice at all. Forced choice is not choice.

Illegitimi non carborundum indeed.

Offred also gets a hug, so do the other ladies. We can all bundle, it’s cool.



It’s been a very female-centric post so let’s hear it for the boys because there are a few I would never swap with either.

I’m a huuuuge fan of The Hunger Games and Katniss features a lot in my posts and so it seems like she’d be the obvious choice for something like this. But you know what? Too obvious! There’s another character in The Hunger Games whose entire story makes me sad. Just…sad. 

Welcome to Finnick Odair. A brash, confident, overly arrogant individual with a soft, nougat centre. He is reaped aged 14 and becomes the youngest ever victor of the games. He is then forced to mentor subsequent tributes from his district whilst also being forced into prostitution for members of the Capitol society.

He gets reaped again for the quarter quell and has to watch Mags (his mentor and the woman who raised him) die. Much like Tess in #1 he gets a brief respite when the rebellion happens and this allows him to finally be free of the Capitol, marry his One True Love and start a family.

He selflessly joins Katniss’ merry band of rebels and just when his life is getting good and freedom is in his grasp…. guess what? Go on guess. I’ll wait.

Yep. He dies.

Finnick, get over here so I can wrap my arms around you.

So those are my top 5 characters I would never, ever, ever, ever trade places with.

This post is hashtag sad isn’t it? I’m going to go find someone to hug. Maybe my cat if she’ll let me. She’ll never let me.







16 thoughts on “Bookish: Top 5 Wednesday – Characters You Wouldn’t Want to Trade Places With

  1. Ughh agree 100%! I’ve only read/watched 2-4 and totally get you, poor women and girls! Tess is one of the classics I’ve never gotten the chance to read, so I plan to correct that, and of course I’ll try Hunger Games soonish! 🙂 Awesome post, but very sad. 😥

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Almost every book I could think of where I had to choose a character it was primarily women. It’s especially sad when they are grounded in history or reality. Tess is just such a sad book and it stuck with me for such a long time because when Thomas Hardy wrote it he was quite progressive with his views whereas the people of the time would have been astonished that Tess was presented with sympathy!


        1. We had to read so many British classics in school and I also took AS and A Level English Literature so I got through quite a few. Some I liked, some I tolerated and some I genuinely could not believe were considered ‘classics’ and the thought of writing essays on them made me want to sob like a baby!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Ughh lucky you! We read Serbian classics of course, and then 154595 Russian ones because Russian literature is precios and they are our blood brothers lol. I hated almost every single one. I know the essay troubles haha, I especially cringe on remembering the one about country life in Gogol’s(I think)novels. Ughhhhhhh. They could have at least given us Austen, Brontë sisters, Dickens, and How to kill a mocking bird. Luckily we had a well stocked school library with those books in English. 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

            1. I’m not too sure if I felt lucky reading some of them! If you have to read classics for fun it’s a lot different than reading them for over-analyse and multiple page essays and exams. It’s definitely the fastest way to put anyone off them! This is where I confess and say that I don’t like a lot of the classics… I’m also crazily well read in second world war literature and poetry because the studied that so heavily for my AS levels. Problem is I just can’t handle that type of stuff!

              Liked by 1 person

              1. I know, I get you totally, that’s probably the reason I hate the Russian classics now haha, but I wish we had some access to the English/American ones, because some books I’d have never read if the teachers hadn’t forced them upon us. 😀

                Liked by 1 person

  2. I haven’t read the first two on your list, but totally agree with 3-5. Sansa is a child, so for her to go through all that grief is…yikes. And Offred’s society is…yuck. Seriously would not want to be in that position of being forced to bear a child. Also, doesn’t Finnick die in a really gruesome way? Not remembering the details, but totally agree, his life is a mess.

    Also, thanks for hugs gif. I needed that. 😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know, after all the trauma I also needed the hug gif! Yeah, they all go through the mill a bit don’t they? Tess is just downright sad and tragic and I know it’s a classic but I never liked Oliver Twist because again it was just so sad (but good for Oliver in the end)!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with this! I would never want to be Sansa, especially, but I think she’s such a badass! Lovely post, and I love your blog aesthetic! ^^

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I’m not the most visually creative type but I do try! I love Sansa a lot and I think her badassary (if that’s a word?!) is just as valid as Arya’s is (I do also love Arya).

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I loved Finnick and was so upset at how his story ended, I couldn’t believe it when I first read it! I also did like Sam Clafin’s performance of him in the movie, I thought he did a great job!

      Liked by 1 person

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