Top Ten Tuesday: Literary Mums

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. If you love books and making lists, this is the meme for you! This week’s topic is:

Mother’s Day Related Freebie

Here in the UK, we actually celebrated Mother’s Day back in March, however I’ll take any excuse to celebrate mums in literature. So here are five of my best literary mums and five of my worst literary mums; the latter of which I am really glad aren’t mine!

***** BEST *****

~ 5 ~

Natalie Prior
Divergent by Veronica Roth

First, I have chosen Natalie Prior from Roth’s popular dystopian, young adult series. She is the caring, patient and selfless mother of the series’ protagonist Tris, but turns out this mum can also seriously kick some butt too.

~ 4 ~

Catelyn Stark
A Song of Ice and Fire series by George RR Martin

Next, I have gone for Catelyn Stark from Martin’s epic fantasy series, who is impressively mother to six children: Robb, Sansa, Arya, Bran and Rickon. I don’t always like her, however I cannot deny she is one tough ‘momma bear; protecting her son Bran from an assassin’s blade with her bare hands!

~ 3 ~

Mrs Waterbury
The Railway Children by Edith Nesbit

Next, I have chosen Mrs Waterbury the mother of Bobby, Phyllis and Peter; the young protagonists of Nesbit’s children’s classic The Railway Children. As well as being kind, loving and intelligent this mum is strong enough to hold the family together when father is taken away. And she writes stories so they can afford buns for tea…what’s not to love?

~ 2 ~

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Nearly making it to the top spot, I have the beloved Marmee of Alcott’s charming classic Little Women. Here is another strong mum who must hold the family together when father goes away to war – her job is made a little harder by the fact her brood consists of four clever, feisty, independent girls.

~ 1 ~

Molly Weasley
Harry Potter series by JK Rowling

However, top spot had to go to Molly Weasley, the indomitable matriarch of the Weasley clan from Rowling’s magical Harry Potter series. What the family may lack in money, this super mum makes up for with an abundance of love…and homemade knitwear. And when her children are threatened, she gives Death Eater Bellatrix Lestrange a piece of her mind and wand!

***** WORST *****

~ 5 ~

Petunia Dursley
Harry Potter series by JK Rowling

First, I have chosen Petunia Dursley the bitter, ‘muggle’ aunt of Rowling’s famous boy wizard: Harry Potter. This bad mum is at best cold and distant to her poor orphaned nephew. While in contrast she simpers and panders to her own son Dudley’s every whim, which turns him into an overweight, spoilt bully.

~ 4 ~

Mrs Bennet
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Next, I have chosen Mrs Bennet, the obsessive match-maker to her five daughters in Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. There is obviously some love in the fact she wants to see he daughters settled, but it is her loud, crass and impolite behaviour which is often what hinders this. Hilarious to read about…mortifying I’m sure if she was actually your mum!

~ 3 ~

Cersei Lannister
A Song of Ice and Fire series by George RR Martin

Again there is actually some real love for her children in my next choice of Cersei Lannister, who is the beautiful but cruel and manipulative Queen Mother in Martin’s epic fantasy series. However this mum is so bent on power and revenge, that her children grow up twisted and weak. Also the fact that her children’s father is her twin brother, Jaime, really doesn’t help either!

~ 2 ~

Eva Khatchadourian
We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver

My next choice could very easily have been number 1 too. Eva Khatchadourian is the mother of Kevin, a disturbed boy who goes on a bloody massacre through his school. Though there is some sympathy for her situation, I can’t help but think that her cold and distant relationship with the son she never really wanted, has a lot to do with what he ultimately does.

~ 1 ~

“Mrs Winterson”
Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal by Jeanette Winterson

Finally, the top spot has to go to the real life, adoptive mother of author Jeanette Winterson, who she tellingly only ever refers to as “Mrs Winterson”. This mum clearly has some mental issues alongside her extremely zealot beliefs, which she literally tries to force upon her adoptive daughter. By leaving her on the doorstep all night and even subjecting her to an exorcism.

What do you think of my choices? What are your best and worst literary mums? Also, please link in the comments if you have taken part in this week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic too.


19 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Literary Mums

    1. Thank you – I am so glad you agree with so many of my choices 🙂 Mrs Bennet is wonderful for how ridiculous she is, as long as your only reading about her and she’s not actually your mother! 😀

  1. So many of us have mentioned Molly Weasley this week (including me!). If only she were a real person so she could see how many people deeply love her. 🙂

    Petunia Dursley struck me as someone who never should have raised any children at all. She wasn’t a good mom to either of her kids.

    Here is my TTT.

    1. Hello Astilbe, thank you for commenting and linking in 🙂 I agree it be wonderful if Molly Weasley were real, although she may get sick of us all turning up hoping to be adopted 😀 Going to check out your post now!

  2. Yay! I’m glad Mrs Weasley won! She’s the perfect mum, isn’t she? I do have a sneaking soft spot for Mrs Bennet though – I expect being married to Mr Bennet would drive any woman over the edge… 😉

    1. FF, Mrs Weasley is the perfect mum 🙂 Haha yeah I expect being married to Mr Bennet hasn’t been easy…but I would still be mortified if she was my mother! 😀

  3. Marmee has made so many lists this week, and that makes me so happy! I was worried when I saw Catelyn on there, because she irritates the piss out of me, but I loved how even though you don’t like her all of the time, you can still admire her motherly qualities.

    My TTT.

    1. Hello Fran, thank you for stopping by, commenting and linking in 🙂 I think Mrs Bennet and Marmee have been popular choices. I look forward to checking out your list.

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