“But these words people threw around – humans, monsters, heroes, villains – to Victor it was all just a matter of semantics. Someone could call themselves a hero and still walk around killing dozens. Someone else could be labeled a villain for trying to stop them. Plenty of humans were monstrous, and plenty of monsters knew how to play at being human.”
We are currently participating in the wonderful Monika’s (printsnpixels) May Book Challenge over on our Instagram page. After seeing today’s topic (Day 25 – Favourite Villain), we decided it was impossible to choose just one so we did the next logical thing and made a blog post about it.
+ So here are our top 5 favourite fictional villains (and the occasional anti-hero) +
1. The Commandant
(An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir)
Picture Queen Ravenna in ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’ but ten times scarier. She is the main antagonist in this story and she never lets you forget it. After our main character, Laia, becomes a spy and is told to spy on the Commandant, her every move matters. This is a woman that whips people for being late and even disfigures them for no reason. She is the head of the Academy and one of the most powerful people in the Empire.
2. Bellatrix Lestrange
(Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling)
Could any list be made without featuring this series? We decided choosing Voldemort would be too obvious but then we realised Bellatrix is ten times more frightening anyway. Everything from her devotion to her master, what she did to the Longbottoms and Hermione and the way she does it all with a baby voice is enough to make you uncomfortable.
3. The Darkling
(Shadow and Bone series by Leigh Bardugo)
After the first book, I essentially carried on reading this series for the Darkling – in my opinion, he’s what really makes the series. A beautifully, tragically written character who pulls you between loving and hating him (I mean, I always loved him, but still). The Darkling is the leader of the Grisha order in this series – the one Grisha who can summon darkness. When Alina gets tangled up with the Grisha, she must confront the Darkling, his secrets, and his ambitions for her and for the kingdom of Ravka.
(Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente)
Koschei the Deathless is described as being ‘to Russian folklore what devils or wicked witches are to European culture: a menacing, evil figure; the villain of countless stories’ aka, apparently, my perfect boyfriend. I’m not even exaggerating, I’m literally just in love with all three of my favourite villains. Koschei, the Tsar of Life, is greedy, selfish, all encompassing and cruel, yet despite all this, you often find yourself rooting for him.
(A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas)
Now, I think both of us have made it clear how we feel about Rhys in A Court of Mist and Fury. However, in A Court of Thorns and Roses, where he is portrayed as one of the main antagonists, he is still an amazing character, one that you instantly want to know more about and anticipate the next time that he’ll appear. Despite supposedly being the bad guy in the first book, and playing up to that role at many points, there is definitely a lot of foreshadowing to how he’s going to be in A Court of Mist and Fury.
What are some of your favourite villains? Or are there some characters that are portrayed as villains when they shouldn’t be? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!