Top Ten Tuesday: Favourite Villains / Morally Ambiguous Characters


Welcome back to another Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the team at The Broke and the Bookish. This week is a freebie week, so I’ve chosen to feature some of my favourite villains and morally ambiguous characters. These are in no particular order.

1. Queen Levana (The Lunar Chronicles – Marissa Meyer)

The Lunar Chronicles is my favourite series and one of the reasons why I love it so much is because of the villain in the series. Queen Levana is so evil and complex and I just loved her and thought she was a great villain.

2. Mayor Prentiss (Chaos Walking – Patrick Ness)

Mayor Prentiss is terrifying! He was so evil in the first book of the series and I loved that about him. But then I read the second book, and his motives and intentions were so morally ambiguous that I had no idea what to think of him… which made him even more terrifying.

3. Manon Blackbeak (Throne of Glass – Sarah J. Maas)

I loved Manon from the first time I met her in Heir of Fire. She’s fierce, fearless and just cutthroat. But she also has a soft side and I can’t wait for Sarah to explore that side of her a little bit more in the remaining books.

4. King Angra (Snow Like Ashes – Sara Raasch)

This guy is just pure evil. Totally terrifying and I’m kinda scared for the last book of the trilogy, Frost Like Night.

5. Max (Max – Sarah Cohen-Scali)

Max is not a villain. But he’s a child born into the ‘Lebensborn’ program, groomed to become a Hitler youth and fight for Germany during WWII. This whole book was about Max’s childhood, from his birth in 1936 until he’s found by the UNRRA after Germany’s defeat.

6. Bellatrix Lestrange (Harry Potter – J.K. Rowling)

I love Bellatrix. She’s absolutely batshit crazy and scary. I especially love Helena Bonham-Carter as Bellatrix in the movies!

7. Arobynn (Throne of Glass – Sarah J. Maas)

Arobynn is just the biggest asshole and I still haven’t forgiven him for what happened in The Assassin’s Blade. But he’s such a confusing and complex character that I couldn’t help but be intrigued.

8. Aeduan (Truthwitch – Susan Dennard)

Aeduan is arguably my favourite character in Truthwitch. He’s so mysterious and interesting, and I can’t wait to find out more about him and his connection to some characters that are mentioned.

9. Mr Gray (The Raven Cycle – Maggie Stiefvater)

Mr Gray appeared to be the villain of The Dream Thieves but Maggie Stiefvater never ceases to surprise her readers with how complex her characters are. We not only got to see his villainous side, but also his fear and the more human side of him that just wants to belong. I loved his character.

10. Draco Malfoy (Harry Potter – J. K. Rowling)

Draco is my favourite character of the series and I had to include him in this list.

I know, I know. I didn’t include The Darkling on this list… but that’s because I don’t really like him that much. Sorry! Who are your favourite villains?


52 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Favourite Villains / Morally Ambiguous Characters

  1. Prima says:

    Helena Bonham Carter really nails Bellatrix’s craziness! I loved watching her in the movies. I’m totally with you on Queen Levana because she really shone in the Lunar Chronicles. I’m pretty sure without such an intricate character as the villain, the series would’ve been pretty boring

    Liked by 1 person

  2. aentee @ read at midnight says:

    Mayor Prentiss is one of the greatest villain omg, everything President Snow wishes he could be. I wish the Slytherin had more of a balanced treatment in the book, I want to believe in the good but the text is frustratingly thin on their characterisation T_T I must dwell in fanfiction.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Holly says:

    Mr. Gray is such an interesting character. I never know what to think about him, even though most of the time I tend to land on the side of “he’s evil.” Who knows what the rest of the series will bring, though!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      He was definitely evil and scary for most of The Dream Thieves but I really started to enjoy his character and the different sides of him towards the end of the book and in Blue Lily, Lily Blue as well. He was just such an unexpected character!


  4. Lois says:

    I love how Levana is unapologetic in her actions and will literally go to any lengths to get what she wants, that’s what makes her such a formidable foe.
    Oh Mr. Gray. It’s so easy to forget about his evil past when he’s so charming and caring in the books. I loved getting to explore his thoughts and I love how supportive he is of Blue, the Raven Boys and women of 300 Fox Way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      I love seeing Mr Gray is a father figure. He’s just amazing to Blue and her mother ❤ . Seriously, could he get any more adorable?! Levana is crazy but I love her because she just wants people to love her and want her. She's still a terrible person though *shakes head*

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Charnell @ Reviews from a Bookworm says:

    YAY! Great choice of topic this week. I always love freebie week as people always do such amazing topics! I love, love, LOVE a morally ambiguous character. They are just so interesting. My favourite one is definitely Manon, she is one of my all time favourites. She was my favourite character in Queen of Shadows. Can’t wait for more of her in the next book.

    Here’s my TTT post if you want to check it out. I picked non-book romances I would love to see get book adaptations.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Maranda Hymes says:

    All great choices but I definitely agree both Manon and Arobynn were very compelling “villians”. I haven’t gotten around to Queen of Shadows yet but I am crazy excited to see more of Manon. I checked The Knife of Letting Go out from the library yesterday and I can’t wait to read about Mayor Prentiss now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      Oooh you will LOVE Manon in Queen of Shadows! And you’ll enjoy Arobynn too! They’re just great characters who are evil but multilayered too. Mayor Prentiss from Chaos Walking is another character who is soooo evil but really complex too! I hope you enjoy the series 🙂


  7. ambitioniskey says:

    I freaking love your topic choice! I feel like I would be spoiled for most of these characters that I haven’t read many of the books for, but YES Bellatrix all the way♥ Love this SO MUCH

    Here’s My TTT if you’d like to check it out 🙂
    Jumana @ Books by Jay

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jenna @ Reading with Jenna says:

      Haha don’t worry. I don’t think any of them are very spoilery. It’s obvious from the first time you meet that they’re the villains. I do hope you get to read some of these though! They’re all 4-5 star books for me! Bellatrix was probably my favourite villain from my childhood! She was just so crazy in her evilness!


  8. Wendy says:

    Great topic and great list! Bellatrix–oooh yeah. I don’t know if Mayor Prentiss would be my “favorite” villain, but he sure was disturbing. I just read The Truth Commission, which is YA contemporary, so I don’t know if “villain” is the right term, but there’s a character in there who is shockingly wicked. Just–wow.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ksenia says:

    I haven’t read a single book from your list, Jenna! Well except for Harry Potter, but I don’t count it. My favorite villain is Ignifex from Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge. I love this sarcastic and smart Gentle Lord. He is so deliciously complex and multidimensional.

    Liked by 1 person

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