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I'm thoroughly enjoying our new Booky Thoughts blog pieces, our LoveReading ambassadors adore all things books, and are valued contributors to LoveReading with their consumer reader reviews. It’s fascinating to see their thoughts, from social media to bookshelves (due soon) we have a unique glimpse into individual book worlds. Our last contributor was year 5 student Prisha who told us how: 'A Book Always Helps'. The third Booky Thoughts Blog belongs to Linda who is well known and highly regarded in the blogging world, she has won numerous blogging awards, so we are thrilled that she is one of our ambassadors. I smiled when I saw where her lockdown pondering had taken her, and she has certainly got me to pull my thinking cap firmly on! Thank you Linda.
Name: Linda Hill
Linda Hill is a blogger and reviewer whose entire life has revolved around books and reading; from studying English at university, then teaching it, through becoming an Educational Consultant, Inspector and Adviser with a focus on literacy and English to writing non-fiction English teaching resources and, more recently, completing the first draft of her novel.
Linda enjoys a broad spectrum of books including poetry and children’s fiction as well as the full range of adult genres, but still rereads her childhood Paddington books annually.
As well as reading, Linda is passionate about travel, having been from Antarctica to Zanzibar and visiting well over 30 countries in the last 10 years, although she complains when she has to weigh her books to keep her suitcase light enough to carry. She also loves cats, chocolate and gardening.
Whilst we’re in lockdown and not going out, a thought struck me. Characters in books are in a permanent kind of lockdown between the covers of their narratives, created by their authors.
But what if they could move from book to book? What if they could form new relationships? And what could be better in times like these than to fall in love?
So I’ve created a virtual dating agency, Linda’s Literary Loves, for characters I think would be perfect for one another and here’s my first pairing:
Ove and Elvira!
Ove is socially awkward. So is Elvira.
Ove has sadness in his life. So does Elvira.
They both have another woman lurking in the background affecting their lives. For Ove it’s his dead wife. For Elvira it’s her mother.
Both of them struggle to conform to society’s norms. Both have challenges to overcome.
They both have obsessive personalities. Ove is a stickler for rules, enforcing them literally and Elvira can tell you the complete history of a biscuit just from its wrapper.
Ove and Elvira have humour and joy as well difficulty. They both deserve true love. I think they’d be perfect for one another.
In case you think they might be too boringly perfect together, let me tell you, Elvira’s love of animals might just drive Ove to distraction too…
If you’ve met them in their books, do you agree?
I'd be pretty keen to see what Thomas Hardy's Angel Clare from Tess of the D'Urbervilles made of Jane Austen's Fanny Price in Mansfield Park, although I wonder if they would ever get beyond shaking hands. Perhaps Emma Woodhouse would give Angel Clare a better run for his money. And as I don't like Angel all that much maybe I could give him a date with Lisbeth Salander instead!
Which characters would you like to see dating one another?
Liz here again, thank you Linda, you've certainly got the team thinking about some of our favourite books and who might like to shimmy off to meet another book character!
My first thought was Scarlett O’Hara (Hamilton, Kennedy, Butler and of course she wished for Wilkes too) from Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind. Who would she like to dally with while plotting to win Rhett back? I think she may well swoon over Jamie Fraser from the Outlander series of novels by Diana J. Gabaldon (hands off Scarlett, he and Claire are a match made in heaven); then of course Jon Snow from the Song of Ice and Fire series by George R. R. Martin could melt her heart; and while Professor Moriarty from The Final Problem and The Valley of Fear by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle may be an unexpected beau, I think she would enjoy tying him in knots. In the end of course, Rhett would still be calling to her, after all, "tomorrow is another day!"
Plus there is Frodo Baggins from the wonderful mind of J.R.R. Tolkien, he may have had other things on his mind, my precious, but who would you like to pair him with? Ariel from Hans Christian Andersen, or perhaps Snow White from the Brothers Grimm might be a dating match?
And just asking, rather too obvious perhaps as they are both wizards, but does anyone else wonder about Gandalf and Albus Dumbledore?
As I was reading this my thoughts immediately went to Villanelle and Hannibal Lector. I think that they would have some fun together, although I definitely like Linda's selection of Lisbeth Salander too. I think Briony from Atonement and Austen's Emma would be the firmest of friends and probably cause a lot of mischief interfering in other people's relationships. On a more romantic footing, perhaps Madeline Miller's Circe would be a good fit for someone in the Harry Potter world? Maybe Draco Malfoy? Both misguided and vulnerable in their own ways because of their upbringing and past connections. Perhaps the kindred spirits of Circe/Malfoy would help each other to overcome their past and find a peaceful future. - Charlotte W