Even though I’m not old enough **cough, cough** to have grandchildren (OK, maybe I am, but my kids are not old enough to be parents, so there!), it’s never too early to plan. Names are power words. They symbolize the complex entity that is a human being and for that reason, adding an extra dose of awesomeness via association can only be a good thing. Therefore, if and when the day comes that I welcome the next generation, here are a few suggestions I’ll be making to my sons:
Claire is not my given name but one I chose for myself as a pen name. My selection was based on a couple of characters: Claire from Outlander and Claire from The Time Traveler’s Wife. I like French sounding names. I like the way C-l-a-i-r-e looks, with a healthy blend of angles and curves, an equal balance of vowels and consonants. My own Christian name starts with a “C”. Claire is smart girl’s name, the girl who goes (on full scholarship) to Brown or Yale or Harvard. That’ll be my granddaughter.
This is the were-hyena, also known as a bouda, from Ilona Andrews‘ short story in the Must Love Hellhounds anthology. He’s also in Magic Bleeds, but as a minor character. Promiscuous by nature, once Rafael sets his sights on Andrea, Kate Daniels‘ (and the star of the Magic series) best friend, he immediately changes his womanizing ways. Though Andrea resists him for nearly the entirety of the short story, you gotta love that kind of commitment and tenacity.
Two reasons for this one. The Princess Bride by William Goldman and The D.U.F.F. by Kody Keplinger. Wesley from The Princess Bride is the more obvious character reference. After all, he is the knight in shining armor. Wesley from The D.U.F.F. is much less obvious except to those who have read the book. He’s another womanizer who, for some reason, sets his cap on Bianca, an acerbic teen with plenty of issues. A shallow alliance of selfish interests fuses Wesley and Bianca together but over time, we see small hints that Wesley is losing his cold, sleazy heart to Bianca. He shares a few characteristics with Rafael. Eh, what can I say. I’m a softie for slow-burn romances that develop between rakes and their unlikely heroines.
Lily Bard from Charlaine Harris‘ Shakespeare mystery series inspired my choice of this name. Here’s a woman whose seemingly normal life is shattered overnight by a brutal attack. She slowly rebuilds, but the scars run deep and still ride herd on her relationships. She is as tough as nails on the outside, but we get enough glimpses of the lonely woman inside to both relate and root for her. I read this entire series by Harris over a year ago but I often reflect on Lily.
Harper and Tolliver
Two more of Charlaine Harris’ characters hail from her Ice Cold mystery series. They begin the series as sister and brother and joint owners of a paranormal business that revolves around Harper’s ability to “read” the last moments of a person’s life from his corpse. Sounds morbid I know, but I love this kind of stuff. The pair’s relationship goes through a heavy evolution that is both heartbreaking and uplifting. I won’t spoil it other than to say these two are smart, tough and 100% devoted and loyal to each other. Plus their names are just so darned cool. I have an internet buddy named Harper. And of course, most have heard of Harper Lee, author of To Kill A Mockingbird. I’ve never met a Tolliver but it sounds so proper and British, doesn’t it? Tolliver in Harris’ series is not a pinky finger extended whilst drinking tea type at all. We’re constantly told he looks “tough”, and he can be if anyone threatens Harper. Gotta love that.
Before you think I’ve gone off my granny rocker on this one, I’ll state for the record that this is my own husband’s nickname from nearly two decades ago when I first met him, days when he also wore a t-shirt that said, “I May Be Thirty But I Refuse To Grow Up.” The fictional Terrible hails from Stacia Kane‘s Downside Ghost series that centers around Church witch Cesaria (Chess) Putnam and her adventures getting rid of nasty, angry ghosts in an atheistic world. Terrible is the muscle / enforcer for Chess’s drug dealer. When first paired up, Chess is rightfully worried that her drug debts have put her on Terrible’s hit radar and therefore her days are numbered. He’s like an ugly, beat up alley cat, not unlike Tolliver. But, he’s smart, he possesses a smidge of magical talent (though not as much as Chess), and he’s big and tough. But most of all, he loves Chess, even when he’s being an ass trying not to, and would do anything for her.
So there you have just a few of my choices. I’m sure they’ll change as I read more wonderful books with awesome characters. I’d love to one day add a few of my own to the list but since few have heard of them but me, they’ll remain my private selections.
Many thanks to Word Bird (Madeline Rex) for the meme idea. Check out her post that inspired mine at her blog.