Top Ten Tuesday – June 5, 2012: Top Ten Most Unfortunate Character Names

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the wonderful blog at The Broke and the Bookish, is a TTT rewind. Yessss!! Since I’m a newcomer to TTT I am very excited about being able to pick any category from the past to revisit (or in my case, free for all for a new list – What is it about making lists that is so cathartic?) sooo…

This one is back from Tuesday November 9, 2010:
Top Ten Most Unfortunate Character Names

1. The Cast of Town in a Blueberry Jam by B.B. Haywood: I think cozy mysteries are the worst offenders (maybe neck and neck with dystopia/sci-fi) of abusing silly names. I mean, come on. Candy Holliday (she was born on Halloween *eye roll*), her father “Doc” Holliday, Sapphire Vine, and “Jock” Larson. Really? Really guys?

2. Renesme Cullen from the Twilight Saga: Okay, so we were all on board with the whole vampire pregnancy up until a certain pointand Bella’s stubbornness about it, but then she wants to name her kid Renesme? I think she’s lost it. Vampire babies make you crazy. It was a nice tribute to the moms by combining Renee and Esme, but Renesme just does not work. Even the characters in the book made fun of it! That’s gotta count for something.

3. Various characters from the Hannah Swensen series by Joanne Fluke: So Hannah’s first love interest in this book is the dentist Norman Rhodes. Norman Rhodes? Granted he’s supposed to be on the “uncool” side, but for some reason I keep thinking “Norman Bates” or just a pudgy middle-aged man with a bad come over. Then there’s other randomly odd names like Rhonda Scharf, Shawna Lee Quinn, Lynne Larchmont, and Willa Sunquist. Not terrible, but I think overdoing it a little.

4. Various characters from series by V.C. Andrews: Yes, I definitely read V.C. Andrews as a kid/teen. As as kid? Aren’t these romance novels for the most part? Yep, and my mom didn’t like that one bit, but everyone in my class was reading them and so did I. But what’s up with these names? Butterfly? Cinnamon? Rain? Ice? Honey? I don’t get it.

5. The cast of The Hunger Games series: I guess this is set in a dystopian future world where real names are out of style. It’s creative, and I actually do like a lot of the names, but they’re just off the wall: Katniss, Peeta (why not just Peter or something?), Primrose, Gale (Gail/Gayle is a girl’s name?), Cinna, Venia, Cato, Thresh, Rue, Clove, Finnick, Marvel, Glimmer… Glimmer!? Even Katniss makes fun of that one… So why use it?

6. Characters from Murder of a Small Town Honey by Denise Swanson: Three of the main characters are Skye Denison (my cousin’s dog’s name is Skye so that didn’t help), Honey Adair (why do people like the name Honey so much? It bothers me), and Mrs. Gumtree. I think I found the book less favorable because I didn’t like the names. In all honesty, it does matter!

7. Bubbles Yablonsky: There was a series featuring main character Bubbles Yablonsky (the first of which is Bubbles Unbound). I actually heard it was rather enjoyable, but I didn’t like her name so I didn’t even try to read it.

8. Zaphod Beebleprox from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: Okay, I know this one is supposed to be silly, but still!

9. Dickie Orr from the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich: He’s a weasel and his name sounds like it too!

10. Jack Daniels from the Jack Daniels series by J.A. Konrath: Cute, but kind of annoying. Lots of liquor jokes and always confusion that Jack is a lady – short for Jacqueline.

9 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday – June 5, 2012: Top Ten Most Unfortunate Character Names

  1. Gone Pecan

    ah, Dickie Orr, if a name ever fit…
    also, Stephanie Strohmeyer wrote the Bubbles Books, and while I haven’t read them, I have read the rest of her books & she’s fantastic. ~dixie

  2. Jackie G.

    Oh my gosh! I totally work with a girl named Cinnamon! In a totally respectable work environment too. I didn’t even know people named their kids after spices. I wonder if she reads V.C. Andrews books…
    I work at a bank, and I had to print some envelopes to send paperwork to customers. One of the envelopes was a addressed to a girl named Strawberry and another envelope addressed to a girl named Velvet. It’s almost like they opened up a dictionary, pointed at a random page, and said “This word looks good for a name”.

    This is a great list. You’ve read a handful of books with characters who have seriously unfortunate names. Candy Holliday? I would feel bad for a person if this was really their name. The kids in school would tease them relentlessly.

    I don’t actually mind the weird names in the Hunger Games. Probably because I like the way the words sound. Especially Primrose and Rue. Glimmer on the other hand… I don’t understand that one. It’s like the author was desperate to name a character or something.

    1. Brittany S

      Oh wow, what random names! Some of those are kind of unfortunate!

      I actually liked the names in the Hunger Games. Some of the dystopia books get a little too literal with the names or too silly. Even though I did mention the Hunger Games in here, I actually did like some of the names! Mainly Prim and Cinna. But I still stand firm on not liking Glimmer, Marvel and even Peeta and Gale! 🙂

  3. Elizabeth

    I may have totally made this up, but I think of a male Gale as being named for a gale of wind and I think that’s a pretty fitting name for him. He’s a rebel at heart and wind is associated with impending change.

    1. Brittany S

      Ah, very good point! Thanks for sharing that with me 🙂 I never thought of it that way but when you put it that way, it makes sense.

  4. Liz

    I agree about renesme! I thought the concept was great because she was taking the two mom names. but i mean the way it was smashed together i didn’t like. I still laugh because of the way I would prounce it before seeing the movie. I was WAY off lol Thank you for stopping by my blog

  5. Liselle @ Lunch-Time Librarian

    I’ve made my peace with the Hunger Games character names with the exception of calling the Peeta/Katniss couple “katpiss” which will forever be hilarious and fully worth the names. But Renesme, I could never stand by that. It makes me cringe. It’s like when Harry Potter named all his children after dead people. But at least they were legitimate names. Renesme makes me want to claw my eyes out. I’m with you on that one!

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