Last year, in honor of Father's Day, I put together my list of Top Ten Literary Dads. Now it's time to honor all the great moms in literature -- and great aunts, stepmothers, and all around mother-figures. Moms come in all incarnations; in fact, there are so many orphans in my favorite books, I've had to include quite a few surrogate mothers in order to come up with a list of ten.
In no particular order:
2. Lily Potter in the Harry Potter series. Makes the ultimate sacrifice for her baby son. Enough said.
3. Marmee from Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. I haven't read this book in years, but I do remember her holding down the fort with grace while her husband is off fighting the Civil War. Not too shabby if you consider she had four daughters! I only have two daughters, and I know I couldn't have done it as well. I think it's time for a re-read.
4. Mrs. Hamley in Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell. She loves her two sons unconditionally, and takes motherless Molly Gibson into her home. Good thing too, as Molly's about to have the silliest stepmother in rural England. (Note that the second Mrs. Gibson is not included in this list.)
6. Mrs. Rouncewell in Bleak House by Charles Dickens. Her son runs away and doesn't come back for years, breaking her heart. Then, when he's accused of murder, she sees him for the first time in years in a prison cell, to convince him not to give up hope.
7. Mammy in Gone with the Wind. Mammy is the moral center and the voice of reason in that entire book. She's the heart and soul of Tara, and Scarlett couldn't survive without her.
8. Topaz in I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith. Another great stepmother. She's artistic and flighty, but she genuinely loves her stepdaughters and tries to keep the family together.
9. Lady Catelyn Stark in A Game of Thrones. She bravely travels through a war-torn country to try and broker peace, and takes desperate measures to save her daughters who are held hostage in the capital.
10. Charlotte in Charlotte's Web by E. B. White. This book always makes me cry. Charlotte is motherly to both Wilber the pig and all her tiny eggs. Best animal mom in juvenile literature, hands down.
I'm sure I've missed some. Bloggers, which literary moms are your favorites?
And a happy Mother's Day to my own mom, who always encouraged my love of reading. Love you!