Top Ten Tuesdays is hosted weekly by The Broke and Bookish and anyone is free to participate! This week’s topic is relating to mothers. But I’m just going to do mother figures/parents because not all people have mothers or good mothers.
Anyway, for heaven sake, when looking through my Goodreads list, I could barely find any mothers in YA. All the mothers I was able to find in my books were absent or awful, so this list is going to be a little out of there. I must be reading the wrong books. Anyway, I’m just going to talk about mother figures; some traditional mothers and some just really good people. Obviously all parents have their flaws, no parents are perfect, but there are some really good parental figures in YA, here are just the ones I found. I’m sure I missed some. And just because I love to hate bad characters, I’ve included some dishonorable mentions at the bottom.
- Lily Potter from Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling
I think we forgot how brave Lily was as a mother. Yes, obviously Molly Weasley but she’ll get lots of love this week so it’s Lily for me. I remember Lily most in the context of Snape’s memory because that’s the largest excerpt of all the Harry Potter books she appears in. The descriptions of her by other people (Lupin, Slughorn and random character we only met once) also stand out to me (kind, loving etc), but we’re told how she was, instead of shown. As such, I spend little to no time thinking about Lily as Harry’s mother. But surely she was a good, albeit not perfect, mother. She obviously loved Harry more than everything; she literally died protecting him. I’m still not sure why she didn’t jump out the window and then disparate, but that’s more of a critique on JK’s part.
- Margot Covey from To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
From the very beginning, it’s clear who has been acting as the second parent when we first meet Margot in To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. Lara Jean and Kitty love her as a sister, but it’s clear they look up to her as much as they look up to their dad. I’m sure Margot sacrificed a lot to be there for her sisters and to help her father raise them after their mother passed away. It’s not easy to take parenthood in any sphere, much less when you’re not fully an adult yourself.
- Inej Ghafa from Six of Crows/Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
I mean, who can deny that Inej pretty much is the Dregs’ moral compass in most situations. She’s the person who serves up the truth and never loses faith in the group. She seems the most mature out of all of them (not like any of them are immature) and honestly, is full of wisdom. Among all the Dregs’ she seems the most parent-like in nature. Like remember those looks your mom use to give you when you did something bad, yeah, that’s Inej embodied.
- Hana from Wolf Children: Yuki and Ame by Mamoru Hosoda
As someone who was raised by a single parent, I LOVED reading about Hana’s journey. Yes, this story is largely about Yuki and Ame growing up; but seeing Hana and her strength was such an inspiration to me. I think she’s one of my favorite mothers. She overcame and sacrificed so much to raise her children in the best possible way she could and did everything to protect them.
Dishonorable parents mention:
- Ramona’s Mom from Ramona Blue and Cath and Wren’s mom from Fangirl
- I will always hate on deadbeats.
- The Wicked Stepparent
- That pretty much takes care of 60% of bad parents
- Anthony Templeman from The Hating Game
- Up, down and look out the window, that Anthony.
- Maxim Maresh from Shades of Magic
- Don’t @ me, he’s flipping terrible. Spoiler: I’m not even mad he’s dead.
- Anna’s dad from Anna and the French Kiss
- He’s pretty much Nicholas Sparks lezbehonest
- Any parents who breathe or has a line of dialogue in dystopic YA books.
- Elphaba’s dad from Wicked
- He’s the one who went flying off the handle
- I’m sorry for missing some; I know I did.
Any mutual feelings of parents out there? Let me know in the comments!