Top 5 Wednesday is currently being hosted by Sam at ThoughtsOnTomes. If you want to learn more about the group or are considering joining in, check out the Goodreads group. Each week has a different topic, and you just post five books that fit that topic.
This week, the theme is to collect five characters that would be sorted into the same Hogwarts House I’m in. I am a Slytherin, so I will be picking characters that are cunning, ambitious, and proud.
Slytherin’s get a bad rep because most of the antagonists in Harry Potter are Slytherins, so they are betrayed as evil. I don’t think I have to tell the book community this, but Slytherin’s aren’t evil. We’re ambitious and sometimes ambition can come across as pushy. Slytherin’s are very goal oriented; I would place a lot of creatives in Slytherin. And how can all Slytherins be evil if Lin-Manuel Miranda is a Slytherin?
In this post, I’m going to show both sides of the Slytherin coin. There are good and bad Slytherins, just like there are good and evil Hufflepuffs, Ravenclaws, Gryffindors.
(source of this image eu-sou-sonserina.tumblr.com)
Mary B. Addison in Allegedly by Tiffany D Jackson
This girl is something. Firstly if you haven’t read this book, get on that. This book is great. Mary has a goal, and she’s going to get it no matter what. For me, she’s on the line between a “good” Slytherin and an “evil” Slytherin. She perfectly embodies ambition and cunning.
Mary does a great job of underplaying her skills– mostly cunning– to get her way. She’s brilliantly written. The unreliable narrative in this story is all Mary’s doing, and all the contradictory stories and memories are playing the reader and everyone around her into her plan.
Katarina Bishop (and most of her crew) in Heist Society by Ally Carter.
In my opinion, Slytherins are natural grifters. In Heist Society, the whole plot centers around the art of the grift. A group of very smart, very cunning teens plan elaborate thefts in art galleries and other places. This whole series is a group of Slytherins doing what Slytherins do– do what they gotta to reach their goals.
In my experience, a group of Slytherins putting their heads together to plan something is partly dangerous, partly the best thing that’s ever happened to whatever it is they are planning. Are you going to an Escape room? Of course, you’ll want at least one Ravenclaw on your team, but if you have more than one Slytherin, you’ll get right through it. Kat’s team of grifters and thieves is a beautiful collection of Slytherin hijinx.
Amy Dunne from Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
I’m going to assume that everyone knows what happens in the books and spoil it if you haven’t. If this were Hogwarts, Amy Dunne would be the embodiment of Slytherin. Her plan and how she frames multiple people for a murder/ kidnapping that didn’t happen is weirdly admirable while being, literally the most jaw-dropping plot twist I’ve read. This woman is a mix of Rita Skeeter and Bellatrix Lestrange, every bit a Slytherin.
I want to call Amy an evil Slytherin, but honestly, I think she’s brilliant. I would never want to hang out with her because she’s probably a psychopath and would frame me for some crime, but she came out with a plan and really went all out. It was something.
Charlotte Holmes in A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro
I am in the camp of Sherlock Holmes is a Slytherin with Ravenclaw tendencies. Why I fall in this direction is because Holmes, Charlotte and other variations of this character aren’t solving crimes to help people, they’re doing in to be right, and frankly, that’s the most Slytherin thing there is.
Alexander Hamilton in Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow.
Speaking of doing things simply to prove you are right, Alexander Hamilton.
Like the very fictional Sherlock Holmes, this real-life person has a lot of the same “I am much smarter than you please sit down while I explain in great detail why everything you have ever thought is incorrect” energy. I could go on for quite a while about how Alexander Hamilton wears the green and silver house colors, but I’m going to assume you’ve listened to the soundtrack.
And that is my incomplete list of super Slytherins. I hope I have created a balanced list of positive and negative traits and how they can manifest in people. Do you agree, disagree, have suggestions? I would love to hear from you!
Until next time Internet,