Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Unusual/Favorite Character Names

Posted October 22, 2013 by Stormy in Books / 11 Comments


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, which features (you guessed it!) top ten lists on a given topic each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten Character Names I Love OR Top Ten Unusual Character Names. Considering character names are so often STRANGE, it shouldn’t be hard to think of ten unusual ones, so I decided to combine the two topics and do BOTH(I’m an overachiever, what can I say?)


Favorite Names:

1. Chrysanthemum, from Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes

I like this one on a personal level. If you’ve never read the classic children’s story, basically, Chrysanthemum has a strange name and when she goes to school, she gets made fun of for having a name that’s also a flower. I LOVED this book as a child because I relate to it so much. Giving that my real name is Stormy, in my first few years of school my name got made fun of ALL THE TIME for being a type of weather. So yeah, I like this character name because SOLIDARITY.

2. Tarver from These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

I just really loved Tarver, including his name! It’s unusual and different, but not so strange that it looks out of place. I’m not sure why I like it, to be honest. I just do. *shrug*.

3. Levi from Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Again, a bit of a different name but not TOO out there. It’s just. . . it suits the character so perfectly, and I love it.

4. Edmund from Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

There’s multiple Edmunds in books that I’ve read, but this was my first introduction to the name, and I’ve loved this name ever since! I even named a pet goldfish Edmund once.

5. Hermione from Harry Potter by JK Rowling

This is a case where the name has just become SO entrenched with a character for me that I really can’t separate the two, and well, Hermione’s my favorite.

6. Karou from Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

I really like Karou’s name because it’s easy to remember, but it’s different and fits the story perfectly.

7. Jane from Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

So there’s TONS of Janes in literature, and it’s not exactly an uncommon name(though I don’t really know personally know anyone my age named Jane), but I’ve ALWAYS loved this name. It’s a very traditional name, but it’s not widely used, and I’ve always loved the way it sounds. If I wanted to have children, I’d totally want to name one of my daughters Jane.

8. Oliver from The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer Smith AND Going Vintage by Lindsay Leavitt

Two characters with this name! Again, it’s a name I’ve always liked. Even though it reminds me of olives, which I dislike. Anyway. . .

9. Wren from Reboot by Amy Tintera

There’s a LOT of YA recently released/soon to be released that have main characters with this name, but Reboot is the one I instantly think of. I really hope YA doesn’t become crowded with TOO many Wrens, but I really do like this name.

10. Gigi from Smart Girls Get What They Want by Sarah Strohmeyer

Gigi always reminds me of Gigi, Chris’ and Sherry’s daughter in Gilmore Girls. And since I’m pretty much the biggest fan of Gilmore Girls, I ALWAYS support things that remind me of Gilmore Girls in my books.

 Unusual Names: 

1 & 2: Aristotle & Dante from Aristotle  and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

So this is one of my favorite books, and both Ari’s names and Dante’s names are given reasons for being what they are in the book, but I can’t deny that it’s a pair of pretty strange names.

3. Caymen from The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

I really like Caymen’s name, but it’s quite unusual!

4. Alaska from Looking for Alaska

With the exception of Georgia, I can’t think of other state names that are often used as names. But Alaska’s gonna be named Alaska anyway.

5 & 6.  Katniss & Peeta from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Their names definitely make sense in-universe, but they were SO hard to get used to at first! Especially Peeta. My first time reading the books, I HATED Peeta’s name. HATED. Now it’s one of my favorite series and I talk about it so much I don’t even think about it, but it was hard name to get accustomed to.

7. Callum from Reboot by Amy Tintera

I guess Callum isn’t THAT strange, but it still throws me off. I’m not a huge fan of this name, just because it sounds like a cough to me.

8. Anthem from The Brokenhearted by Amelia Kahaney

Such a strange name.

9. America Singer from The Selection by Kiera Cass

Oh, America Singer. What a name you have! ALL the characters in these books have the weirdest names, but America’s particularly hits you over the head. Living in the country that used to be America AND is actually a singer? Color me shocked.

10. River from Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke

So this one’s justified in the book by it being admitted that the characters don’t know if River is his real name or not, but even so, it’s a strange name to settle on. Though as far as water entities go, River is by far the one I’d like to be called, over, say. . . Stream. Or Lake. So I guess River’s not so bad.




11 responses to “Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Unusual/Favorite Character Names

  1. Wren is a great name! I have Hermione on my list and like you, I find it hard to separate the name from the character. I’d hate to read a book with a bad/ unlikeable character called Hermione as that would just ruin the whole thing.

  2. LOVED Tarver. These Broken Stars is one of my favourite books this year. Daughter of Smoke and Bone is one of my all time favourite series and Karou is so great. Oliver is such a fantastic name too!

    I really like the names Caymen and River too. I’ve read a book before where the girls name is Lake and it was surprisingly really pretty.

    Great list 🙂

  3. Wren’s on my list, too. I keep going back and forth about Callum. I like it, but then I don’t like it. It feels familiar, but I can’t place it, and I think that’s why I’m undecided on it. Anthem is a great name, too!

  4. I actually like River! Not sure why.
    Great minds think alike with Wren & Oliver, I see 🙂 I forgot about Levi! And Reagan for that matter. Just taking so many more from Fangirl haha. I also like Hermione and totally forgot about Karou. Rats.
    Yeah, America Singer. Probably one of my least favorite!!
    Great lists, as always! 🙂

  5. Cee

    UMMMMM, CAN WE TALK ABOUT HOW SQUEAL-Y I AM RN BECAUSE I LOOOOVEEEDDD CHRYSANTHEMUM (THE BOOK) AS A KID? (Can you tell how excited I am about it? Lollll.) I hated my name too, but I grew to love it.

    Ooooh, I love the name Edmund. It makes me think of stuffy Englishman. Lol. And River, I was so intrigued by his name. River West. So strange, but I’m pulled to it.

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