To Snog, Perchance To Dream*  

Posted by Heidi in

Today's guest bloggist had my attention at word one: Novembrance, (the title of her blog). Talk about clever! Luisa Perkins lives in New York (ish), attends Broadway plays on a regular basis and is a seeker of beauty in all things. She is pretty brilliant--take, for instance, the title of this post (hers, of course). Reading her offering for today made me feel just a wee bit smart in light of our similar tastes (see list below). What's more, she has published a novel and a short story. Check out her blog and discover Luisa for yourself at Novembrance.

I’m honored to be guest posting here at Dunhaven Place today. As I contemplated what I would write while filling in for the creator of the delicious Sir Anthony, I remembered something I wrote eons ago (as blog time is reckoned). It was huge fun to write, though I must confess: I didn’t come up with the idea. Credit for that must go to Veronica Mitchell, the genius blogger at Toddled Dredge. Without further ado, I give you:

Ten Literary Characters I Would Totally Make Out With If I Were Single and They Were Real But I’m Not, Single I Mean, I Am Real, But I’m Also Happily Married and Want to Stay That Way So Maybe We Should Forget This

My husband Patrick is out of town for the next few days; what better way to console myself in his absence than to wax poetical over literary flames who have warmed my heart in the past? That—and a little Black & Green’s Milk Chocolate Butterscotch, plus maybe another viewing of The Scarlet Pimpernel—and I’m almost fine. I’ll list my literary crushes in chronological order.

1. Will Scarlet was my first literary love. (Ned Nickerson never really did it for me, and I probably would have had a crush on Almanzo if I hadn’t been distracted by Laura Ingalls Wilder’s fabulous descriptions of food.) I have an ancient copy of Philip Schuyler Allen’s Robin Hood that I read over and over again when I was nine. I pictured myself as one of Maid Marian’s junior attendants, running around the woods and having archery competitions with the handsome, tempestuous Will.

2. Rhett Butler: I read Gone With the Wind three times the summer I was ten; I’ve probably read it at least another fifteen times since then. “Oh, Rhett, Rhett,” I’d practice sighing in my idea of a cultured Georgia accent when I was sure no one was around.

He was kissing her now and his mustache tickled her mouth, kissing her with slow, hot lips that were so leisurely as though he had the whole night before him. Charles had never kissed her like this. Never had the kisses of the Tarleton and Calvert boys made her go hot and cold and shaky like this. He bent her body backward and his lips traveled down her throat to where the cameo fastened her basque. “Sweet,” he whispered. “Sweet.”

Holy cow. I can’t believe I was reading that when I was ten.

3. Éomer from The Lord of the Rings came next. I knew I couldn’t compete with the eternally beautiful Arwen, so Aragorn was right out. Faramir is awesome, but he’s clearly the man for Éowyn. Éomer, however, is completely unattached. (Oh, I know he eventually marries Lothíriel. Give me a break.) He’s a manly Marshal with fabulous, long blond hair, and he knows how to handle horses; he commands. I felt vindicated in my love for him when Karl Urban played him in the movie version of The Two Towers. Good grief: he is out of control.

4. When I was twelve, I was blown away by Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern series (not the lame, tame version that has been edited and reissued for kids). Chief among its attractions (the fabulous telepathic dragons aside) was the amber-eyed, haughty F’lar, leader of the dragonriders.

5. In Eighth Grade Honors English, we read Much Ado About Nothing, then went and saw the play at San Francisco’s American Conservatory Theatre. Benedick had me at “I will do myself the right to trust none; and the fine is, for the which I may go the finer, I will live a bachelor.” Oh, the challenge…again, validation of this crush came when Brian Stokes Mitchell recently played Benedick in Kiss Me, Kate on Broadway.

6. Captain Wentworth: Of course I adore Mr. Darcy, but sometimes I go for the less obvious guy; the reserved hero of Jane Austen’s Persuasion is just the ticket. I know he rightly belongs to Anne. It’s just that I, like the Musgrove girls, have “a little fever of admiration” for him (especially as realized by Ciarán Hinds in the 1995 movie).

7. Including Chris McIlroy of my own first novel Shannon’s Mirror is not an act of shameless self-promotion. It’s just that he is an aggregate of all my favorite teen-age boyfriends. Heaven knows they were attractive enough in real life. How much more their composite ideal?

8. Who cares whether Llewelyn ap Iorwerth happens to be one of my real-life ancestors? There are almost 1,000 years between us. In Sharon Kay Penman’s historical novel Here There Be Dragons, he fights hard to keep Wales unified in the face of John Lackland’s inroads; he’s unfailingly loyal to Richard the Lionhearted; and he completely forgives his wonderful wife Joanna a grievous hurt. Their makeup scene not only made me cry when I first read it, it gets me a little misty just writing about it now.

9. John Uskglass, a.k.a. The Raven King: He looks like Lord Byron, only better. He’s powerfully magical and oh, so mysterious. He rules all of Faerie. He’s one of the reasons why Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, by Susanna Clarke, is one of my favorite books of all time.

10. Jake from New Moon and Eclipse: Can someone please explain to me why Bella is such a goner for a cold undead guy when there is a wolfishly hot, motorcycle-riding, live human right at her elbow? (Edward fans, that’s a rhetorical question.) The makeout scene between Jake and Bella in Eclipse is by far my favorite thing that Stephenie Meyer has yet published.

* Hamlet didn't make the cut. Unless it's the Hamlet played by Ralph Fiennes on Broadway back in 1995. Get out of my way, Ophelia...Other contenders were Heathcliff (except I’d be too scared of Cathy’s revenge); Elizabeth George’s Inspector Lynley; Diana Gabaldon’s Jamie Fraser; and of course, the incomparable Barney Snaith.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 14, 2009 at Tuesday, April 14, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

25 wise, witty and wonderful comments

OH MY GOSH...I love you! HOnestly...such a GREAT top 10! And most of them I KNEW! Pat myself on the back!

But I always felt alone for my love of Jake and their kissing scene...thank GOODNESS for validation!

and RHETT...I've read that book at least as many times as you...we are SOUL sisters for sure!!!

Heidi...guess what BOOK I picked up from the LIBRARY!... Will your Main guy make my top 10???

April 14, 2009 at 10:39 AM

Shelle, all I can say is that Sir Anthony makes MY top ten. I'm excited that you are going to read all about him, though. I do prefer Edward to Jake BUT I have to say, let's be real, here, kissing Jake would have to be wayyyyyy better than kissing Edward. I personally prefer warm lips to marble hard and cold ones.

April 14, 2009 at 11:05 AM

What a fun post! And as a total side, I had forgotten all about The Scarlet Pimpernel. It must be a decade now since I've seen it. But I loved it! I'll have to get that again!

April 14, 2009 at 11:40 AM

My Sir Anthony is named after Anthony Andrews who played the SP in the Jane Seymour version. sigh . . .

April 14, 2009 at 11:50 AM

Do you read Robin McKinley? She has contributed significantly to my literary man-harem.

April 14, 2009 at 12:06 PM

Hmmm...Yeah, I'll agree that as much as I adored Nancy, Ned never really did it for me (or prbobably anyone).

Very fun post! I can't believe you were reading Gone with the Wind at age 10...too funny. Then again, I read A Tale of Two Cities at that age, but I found no man crush while reading it.

And, Heidi, I LOVE Anthony Andrews in SP. That is why it is in my top two favorite movies of all time.

April 14, 2009 at 12:10 PM

This is a BRILLIANT idea!!!! Oh, swoon! Lucky for my husband (whom I adore!) my literary loves remain on the page (unless you count the imagination and then I'm screwed.)

And I'm TOTALLY down with Anthony Andrews! Sink me!

As for the wolfishly delightful makeout scene, I'm a staunch supporter! Who needs a living leech when you've got a warm, walking rug?

April 14, 2009 at 12:30 PM

Lara, about 15 years ago, the Romance Writer's of America voted it the most romantic movie of all time. In a way, it's my #1 fave movie except that I can never ultimately choose just one. However, I could watch it over and over and never get tired of it. Pam--love Robin McKinley though I have to say her fave of mine is Sunshine--the hero is my fave literary vampire, too. Sorry, Edward. Now, put Spike and Buffy in a book and I might have to change my mind. . ..

April 14, 2009 at 12:32 PM

Laura--sink me! Love, love, love it!! It almost makes me want to write a Georgian romance so I can use that phrase. sigh . ..

April 14, 2009 at 12:33 PM

Rhett, Mmmmmmmmmmmm.
Captain Wentworth, Ahhhhhhhhhhh!
I'd add El Gallo from The Fantasticks. Oooooooh!

April 14, 2009 at 12:39 PM

Oooh, yeah, I gotta go with Anthony Andrews for sure. But Luisa, I must say, I LOVE me some Jamie Fraser. Yum.

April 14, 2009 at 2:26 PM

love them all... there are certain characters I can read about and hubby gets the steamy benefits - 1/2 of them made your list :)

April 14, 2009 at 2:43 PM

haha, this is too fun! I always thought Scarlett should just stop fighting and have a good ol' time with Rhett...also-- love that you were distracted by food so that you couldnt crush on Almanzo ;) Have you ever read Farmer Boy? If you're on a diet, beware! Its like a foodie dream!

April 14, 2009 at 3:35 PM

LOVE this post!! ahhh....the romance of fictional characters. maybe sometime we should include disney cartoon movies. aladdin has a pretty great upper body.

April 14, 2009 at 5:17 PM

Oh, heavens, I feel all my suppressed crushes coming to the front. Gilbert, from Anne of Green Gables. How he proposes to Anne, even though he knows she's going to say no. I always wanted to marry Gilbert. My eleventh year, I spent the whole year hoping I would meet my future husband. Even then I knew I had not met a single person I could marry that year. Sigh.

Barney Snaith. I love him too, for the older LMM fan. And Captain Wentworth is great, but honestly I like Persuasion for the maturity of Anne, so I have to revert to P&P (without Zombies) and swoon over Mr. Darcy. He's so a devilishly clever and handsome way.

The Scarlet Pimpernel!! I loved the movie with Anthony Andrews first, when he tells Marguerite (sp?) in response to her saying they don't know each other very well, that she can tell him about herself slowly, ever so slowly, so that it will take a very, very long time - and he says all this while kissing her. It'd convince me to marry him! And in the book, when Percy kisses her footsteps after she goes in the house. I love that scene.

Ok, so I'm writing my own blog post here. Apparently there is a lot of pent up book passion I have inside of me.

April 14, 2009 at 5:51 PM

Can I just second Gilbert...How badly Anne treated him for nearly three books just made my heart melt. I am forever a Gilbert fan.

I also want to include if we are looking at fantasy fic-----my undying devotion to Drizzt DoUrden of RA Salvatore fame. His stance for justice and what is right just makes me weak.

One more I want to include from one of my favorite books, although he is hardly romantic...I just love his loyalty and ability to stand for truth against all that is big business and government....John Galt of Atlas Shrugged

April 14, 2009 at 6:09 PM

Very cool list!

I love your choices, but I think Kiss Me, Kate is a musical version of Taming of the Shrew, isn't it? Either way, I LOVE Kenneth Branagh as Benedick opposite Emma Thompson in his Much Ado About Nothing.

May I add one more? Hawkeye from Last of the Mohicans. Doesn't hurt that a manly Daniel Day Lewis played him back in the early 90s movie.

April 14, 2009 at 6:43 PM

Thora--I was so upset when the step kissing scene was NOT in the movie (we're talking Scarlet Pimpernel, here) It is hands down one of the most romantic things I have ever read!

April 14, 2009 at 7:24 PM

Well, I'm in complete agreement with many of your choices. And your comment about Jacob and Bella was spot on. I kept rooting for the guy the entire series and was seriously put off by the last book.

April 15, 2009 at 12:50 PM

Fun to read, and especially because it made me realize just how very unwell read I am.

It's SO FUN to be reminded of that! :)

April 15, 2009 at 11:32 PM

I need my husband to come home from work right NOW so I can snog him good and proper! Phew!

April 16, 2009 at 4:23 PM

Wonderful. I love every word of this.

But -- How did you leave out Captain Jack from These Is My Words?

April 16, 2009 at 5:49 PM

Oh, Charrette, I LOVE Captain Jack. That is such an excellent book!

April 17, 2009 at 3:28 AM

And suddenly I'm coming up dry for literary crushes. . .What is wrong with me.

Although I will give a nod to Heidi's Sir Anthony. That kiss scene was fabulous!

I can't believe how dry my brain is. I'm going to have to find me some literary crushes!

Oh wait, I do love The Scarlet Pimpernel and I do love Gilbert, although my younger self was so very sad when she said no to Morgan in the second movie even though I knew she was going to get Gilbert in the end.

In the Austen world, I'd probably go for Mr. Knightly just because of the guy in the Gwynnith Paltrow version. Love him!

April 18, 2009 at 9:58 PM

Amen to Captain Jack, amen to Anthony Andrews, amen to several others. NO amen to Edward/Jacob. You know how strongly I disagree with you here. Haha. Oh, and the biggest amen (and props) go to Chris McIlroy-- and I love that he's on your list. :-D

April 21, 2009 at 1:31 AM

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