The Smashing and Dashing Character Awards 2020–all my new sleep-deprived kids

*sees this tag*

*does a double-take and trips over my own feet*

*screams from where I’m sprawled on the floor* HOW DID I NEVER KNOW THIS EXISTED BEFORE?

An excuse to scream about all the characters I met this year? What is this brilliance. Must participate immediately.

This tag was originally created by the illustrious dragon queen Cait@Paperfury and was just brought to my attention by the incredible Sarah Seele @ Sixty-Something Trees (her post is fantastic. Go read it right now).

I will now proceed scream like a pterodactyl and hand out awards to characters I met in 2020.

Let the awards ceremony commence!

Most Relatable Character

…Well, we’re off to a great start. There aren’t really any characters I met this year that made me scream “This character is ME.” (…Actually, I’m pretty sure I did randomly shout “ME” several times while reading, but more because a character was being super relatable in that particular moment.)

Maybe Alistair from The Riverman. He’s so concerned about the people around him, and he wants to help them, but he doesn’t know how. He just wants everyone to be ok. He also spends a lot of time stuck in his head, trying to decide whether he should talk to people about what’s going on. Ok, yeah, maybe this kid is me.

(As far as relating to isolated aspects of characters, I hardcore relate to Prince Lin from Fullmetal Alchemist randomly collapsing when he’s hungry.)

Most Pure Animal Companion

  • The Kitten from Egg and Spoon (does he have a name?? I can’t remember it for the life of me). Just a darling little talking kitten full of snarky comments and a love of naps.
  • Mouse from A Question of Holmes. After everything that Charlotte has gone through, being reunited with her darling cat was just about the best thing that could happen to her. Snuggling with a cat. This is where true healing happens.

…Clearly I’m partial to cats.

Fiercest Fighter

  • Riza Hawkeye from Fullmetal Alchemist. Incredible sharpshooter, ready and willing to march into battle to protect the people she loves and uphold what she believes. Makes sure Mustang doesn’t get himself killed on rainy days.
  • Inej from The Six of Crows Duology. Has been through so much, is incredibly skilled and completely terrifying, but still manages to have a conscience, what.
  • Pol from The Thief. Will not let anything happen to Sophos. Super intimidating soldier, but really kindhearted. We love this man.

Am I Surprised That I Love You?

Dr. Seward from Dracula. At the beginning he was just one of the three guys who all proposed to Lucy on the SAME DAY…so yeah, I was laughing and not really taking any of them seriously. Also, he’s in charge of an insane asylum and Victorian insane asylum’s aren’t exactly…the greatest.

But he turned out to be…kind of great. After being rejected by Lucy, he still loves her–but not in a creepy obsessive way. More like in a ‘let me do everything I can to save your life’ kind of way. And he’s not bitter toward Arthur (the guy whose marriage proposal Lucy accepted). Such maturity is always refreshing.

Best Sassmaster

There was so much sass this year.

  • Baba Yaga from Egg and Spoon. The level of sass here. Really now.
  • Charlotte Holmes from The Charlotte Holmes Series. I mean…she’s a descendant of Sherlock Holmes. Need I say more?
  • Eugenides from The Thief. I think this kid is physically incapable of not sassing people. To the point of it sometimes being a problem.

Best Antihero

*crickets chirping*

What…have I even read…

I guess I’ll just say Damien from A Neon Darkness. I didn’t like this book that much, but I’m always here for angsty superpowers. Damien does some really awful things, but it’s so COMPLICATED and, while it doesn’t excuse his actions, you can understand the motivations behind a lot of what he does.

Somebody please stop this kid.

The Best Friends of All

I’ve been actively trying not to do any of the same answers as The Story Sponge (WE READ SO MANY OF THE SAME BOOKS) but I HAVE to on this one.

Emma, Ray, and Norman from The Promised Neverland. They’ve been best friends all their lives and they care about each other SO MUCH and I love them dearly. All the flashbacks of them as wee children melt my heart. All their self-sacrificial plans to save each other make me want to scream. And all the HUGS??

Best Villain TO HATE


Ah, I know. How about Dracula?

Go away, you stupid vampire.

Award for Best vs. Worst YA Parents


Sig and Izumi Curtis from Fullmetal Alchemist. No, they’re not technically parents, but they’ve CLEARLY all but adopted Ed and Al. And it’s beautiful. The HUG in vol. 6 (hugs are my JAM). The part when Sig is like, “You idiot. Just because you’re not Izumi’s apprentices anymore doesn’t mean we’re cutting you out of our lives.” Izumi putting a band-aid on little(r) Ed’s nose in the flashback?? Why is this so adorable???


Jan Van Eck from The Six of Crows Duology. Just…what the heck, man. Wylan does not deserve this.

Ship of All Ships in 2020

…Can I just say Sig and Izumi again? They have such a sweet wholesome marriage, and I totally support it.

Rose and Jasper from The Ugly Princess and the Wise Fool are pretty sweet too.

Most Precious Must Be Protected

I have to say Phil from The Promised Neverland. I just have to. He is the most precious child and we MUST PROTECT HIM.

Also Davie from Where the World Ends. Somebody please protect this child.

Honestly Surprised You’re Still Alive

Mark from The Client. The mob is after you, child.

At first he’s pretty freaked out and wanting to get away from all this, but a certain point he basically throws caution out the window and…

Yeah. I’m glad he’s still alive.

Oh, and Jamie Watson from The Charlotte Holmes Series. Because people keep trying to kill him. And those Moriartys can be a pretty scary bunch.

Award for Making the Worst Decisions

So many terrible decisions were made this year. So many.

I’m just going to say Edward Elric from Fullmetal Alchemist. I love the kid, but…his decisions can be questionable. Trying to use alchemy to bring your mom back to life? Not a great idea. Sneaking away from the people who are trying to protect you so you can charge into a super dangerous situation and almost get yourself killed? Not the best move.

Most in Need of a Nap

Oh, there are so many. I will resist the urge to list all of them.

  • Kaz Brekker from Six of Crows. And no, passing out from trauma or injury does not count. Go take a real nap right now, son.
  • Norman and Ray from The Promised Neverland. I keep quoting the part where Ray says “Thanks to this, I’m sleep-deprived.” These boys need to sleep.
  • Alphonse from Fullmetal Alchemist. This poor child is physically incapable of taking a nap because…he’s a suit of armor. But he really needs to be able to sleep again.

Want to Read More About You

…Basically everyone in The Promised Neverland. I would always love to hear more about the main kids, but also PHIL obviously. And Isabella? What’s happening with her?? And it took me a while to warm up to them, but at this point I would definitely read more about Lucas and the Goldy Pond kids. (And I know I didn’t actually meet them until the beginning of 2021, but also the Lambda kids [ZAZIE IS MY SON]!)

…Yeah, I’m a little bit obsessed with The Promised Neverland right now, in case you couldn’t tell.


Well, that was fun (if difficult to make decisions, help)! I hope we have multiple statuettes or plaques or ribbons for each award… If not, I suppose several of the characters will have to share.

What are some of the award-winning characters you met this year? What new children have you adopted? Have you met any of these characters? What characters do you want to read more about? Who are you surprised is still alive? Who needs a nap (well, I do, but I mean fictional characters)? Do tell!

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17 responses to “The Smashing and Dashing Character Awards 2020–all my new sleep-deprived kids”

  1. Pol! Pol is the best. *cries*

    Eugenides! The sassmaster of sassmasters. XD (He makes so much trouble for himself. I love it.)

    I’ve not read any of the other books (except Six Of Crows, and it’s been f o r e v e r), but it was really fun to see the Queen’s Thief characters in here! πŸ™‚

    (And also, it sounds like I need to read The Promised Neverland?)

    Liked by 1 person

    • We love Pol. *weeps*
      And Eugenides. How is he so fun to read about??
      Yes you DO need to read The Promised Neverland! I mean…if you’re not totally opposed to reading manga. It’s absolutely bursting with wonderful characters πŸ™‚


  2. Pol. POL POL POL. My sister refuses to reread The Thief (which she loves) because of him and…well, you know. I’m rereading it right now and I adore him.
    I also adore Eugenides. Truly cannot keep quiet when he should. Still manages to be sooo sneaky and devious. We love him TOO and must protect him. (Have you read any of the sequels?)

    But Inej is also the Fiercest Fighter and WHAT A HUMAN. WE LOVE HER.

    What is The Client? For some reason I’m super intrigued by your description of Mark. (Or maybe just the mention of the mob? I love stories where the mob is after people. Even though they also FREAK ME OUT. Also I have relatives who I like to imagine are the several-times-removed, not-so-finanically-well-off, kind of embarrassing, we-don’t-talk-about-them-but-we-can’t-avoid-inviting-them-to-weddings relations of the mafia. So.) (And I guess I might have relatives in the mob, too, considering my Irish blood, but I haven’t met them and honestly I think most of my Irish ancestors were Southerners? But not like Scarlet O’Hara. Like poor Southerners. Why has this comment turned into a reflection on my ancestry.)

    YOU AND THE STORY SPONGE AND THE PROMISED NEVERLAND. Gee whiz. I really want to read it so much now even though I…don’t think manga would be my thing? At all?

    Thank you for calling my post fantastic, that made me happy. And thank you for writing this ever-so-much-more-fantastic post of your own. A truly smashing salute to some truly dashing (whether in the sense of handsome and charming, or of running around like chickens with their heads cut off because authors are MEAN to their sleep-deprived children) characters! πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pol is WONDERFUL. This man.
      And the disaster child. He is also wonderful. It is truly ironic how sneaky he can be considering the fact that he’s incapable of keeping his mouth shut XD
      Have I read any of the sequels, you ask? *glances at the pile of library books currently living under my bed* Yes, indeed I have! I just finished Thick as Thieves a few days ago! And now I’m waaaaaiiiiting for whoever has Return of the Thief checked out to RETURN IT TO THE LIBRARY. I think the first book is my favorite, but I have been quite enjoying the others.
      WHAT A HUMAN INDEED. Inej is the best.
      The Client is about a kid who sort of accidentally finds out some information about a dead body that the mob doesn’t want anyone to know…which is not a great position to find yourself in. So the police are trying to get him to give information for their investigation, but if he tells them anything the mob will come after him and his family, so he’s like I NEED A LAWYER and… Yeah. It was an enjoyable read.
      Your FAMILY though. I was actually laughing out loud as I read that XD
      My Sponge sister and I are both currently…a little bit obsessed. If it’s any encouragement, I never really had any interest in reading manga before either. So who knows?
      Thank you!! (And thank you for your TRULY fantastic post!)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This tag looks super fun. I don’t know many of these characters… except Eugenides, Pol, and Dr. Seward. I’ve heard of a few of the others, but haven’t read them yet. I shall have to look into some of these! πŸ™‚

    I also might have to commandeer this tag. It looks like a good one to add to February is Fantasy Month! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

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