Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Characters With Essential Survival Skills


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten Characters Who… (choose a characteristic and find ten characters who fit). So many options! Characters who make the best friends? Characters I’d like to invite for dinner? It’s so hard to narrow it down!

Going with my chosen theme, these are my picks for characters who you’d want by your side in a crisis — characters who have the skills it takes to survive!

1) Claire Fraser (Outlander series): You’ve got to hand it to Claire. She manages the transition from 20th century to 18th century without missing  a beat, and adapts her modern-day physician skills to become a healer woman in her new home. Medicinal herbs, home-brewed penicillin, hand-made ether for surgical anesthetic — Claire can do it all!

2) Brianna Randall MacKenzie (Outlander series): Just as inventive as her mother Claire, although with a different focus. Bree is an excellent shot, can hunt for dinner any day of the week, and in her spare time figures out how to create a kiln and make water pipes from clay.

3) Darla Edmunds (Ashfall series): Darla, a super-talented teen, is the key to survival for her entire community. She invents Bikezilla (a hybrid bicycle/snowmobile that can be used to haul just about anything), bike-powered corn mills, wind-powered turbines, and central heating. When there’s no electricity and everyone is on the verge of starvation, Darla figures out how to feed, house, and warm hundreds of people at a time.

4) Lauren Olamina (Parable of the Sower): Lauren founds a religion, protects her people, creates a community, and keeps hope alive when the world seems to be falling to pieces. She also thinks ahead to the little things, like stocking up on ammo and plant seeds.

5) Tyrion Lannister (A Song of Ice and Fire): Tyrion seems to always manage to survive, somehow, by using his wits and his tongue. Whether these will continue to work for him remains to be seen.

6) Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games): No explanation needed, right?

7) Yorick Brown (Y: The Last Man): After all males on the planet are wiped out in an instant, Yorick is literally the last man on Earth — and there are plenty of people who’d like to get rid of him too. He survives through goofiness, charm, and his ability to roll with the punches and not give up. Despite his slacker exterior, Yorick excels at forging alliances, and the biggest plus in his fight for survival is the excellent team he holds together.

8) Hig (The Dog Stars): Being a pilot is a matter of survival for Hig in this post-apocalyptic novel, in which viewing the surrounding terrain from the air and being able to spot danger before it arrives at his door is what’s kept him alive for so long.

9) Bilbo Baggins (The Hobbit): Never underestimate the survival ability of a burglar! For a simple hobbit who never wanted to leave his own comfy home, Bilbo certainly has a talent for getting into and out of the unlikeliest of places. And clearly, being able to solve riddles when your life is on the line is no small feet feat.

10) Harry Dresden (The Dresden Files): Not only is Harry the only professional wizard in Chicago, he’s a man with the ability to face down any foe, human or otherwise, cast enchantments and spells, and even come back from the dead. Can’t beat that for a survival skill!

What character traits were on your mind this week? Share your links, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out our regular weekly features, Thursday Quotables and Flashback Friday. Happy reading!


Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!


21 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Characters With Essential Survival Skills

  1. Tyrion and Katniss definitely got that what makes them to survive until to the end. 🙂 I cheered for Katniss and still cheering for Tyrion – I hope it’s not in vain! Great list!

    • Right! Surviving thanks to quick thinking and the ability to talk yourself out of a sticky situation can be just as important as being able to shoot or do martial arts. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

Comments... We love comments!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s