Ode to the Quirky Character

Recently, a patron recommended Clock Dance by Anne Tyler.  She remarked, “this book has Anne Tyler’s wonderful quirky characters.” I quickly checked out the book and am happy to report that it did not disappoint. There was plenty of quirk to keep me smiling and a charming ending to warm my heart. 

I delight in a story filled with unique characters, particularly when they find one another to form their own version of a family.  Whether it is the utter misunderstanding of social norms (that’s you Eleanor Oliphant and Don Tillman of The Rosie Project) or the obsessive hold on certain norms (ahem, Ove) or the refreshing way they march to their own tune in both mundane and extraordinary ways, these memorable characters help us to embrace the beautiful oddities in each of us. 

Here are a few books I have enjoyed that feature lovable, quirky characters. I hope you will enjoy them as well!

Fredrik Backman: A Man Called Ove

Gail Honeyman: Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

David Sedaris: all of his books

Maria Semple: Where’d You Go, Bernadette

Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society

Graeme Simsion: The Rosie Project

Anne Tyler: Clock Dance, Patchwork Planet, and more

Gabrielle Zevin: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry


Here are a few that are on my list:

Fredrick Backman: Anxious People

Katrina Bivald: The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend

Julia Claiborne Johnson: Be Frank with Me

Rachel Joyce: The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

Abbi Waxman: The Bookish Life of Nina Hill


Happy reading!

Make a donation to the BFL Board of Trustees' Annual Fund