I’m lucky. I have some really amazing friends, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world. (Even cupcakes. And there are few things I love more than cupcakes.) They humor me while I talk about my dog to no end, share jokes that no one else would understand, and only sometimes bring up the time that I walked out of that restaurant with my coat buttoned entirely wrong. I’m grateful for my friends every single day, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t have some fictional #squadgoals as well.
In honor of Galentine’s Day, I’ve put together a list of the literary heroines I would love to hang out with. (And no, Claire Fraser did not make this list because all I’d want to do is talk about her husband, and that might get super awkward.)
Becky Bloomwood – The Shopaholic Series by Sophie Kinsella
Let me tell you a story. When I worked in retail back in 2004, my store got in this chocolate brown suede trench coat. It was as gorgeous as it sounds. Definitely a staple piece that I would totally still be wearing to this day because it matched my hair and it fit just right and it was timeless. It was also pricey and I wondered, ”Do I really need it?”, so I decided to think about it for a few days. The next day, my precious dream coat had sold. I still think about that coat. If I were friends with Becky Bloomwood, she never would have let me walk out of that store without buying the coat. She would have convinced me that I needed it—in multiple colors, if they were available—and some boots, and a bag, and a wallet. Becky and I would be best friends forever and would most def have some kind of jewelry to show for it because that’s just how we do.
(Side note: I like to think that I am a Becky when I go shopping with my friends. Perhaps this is why my friends often suggest alternatives to shopping.)
Bridget Jones – The Bridget Jones Series by Helen Fielding
Who doesn’t want to be friends with Bridget Jones? She’s hilarious, and she’s so real, and she’s without a doubt the kind of person you can be your entire self with without ever being afraid of being embarrassed. Why? Because if Bridget witnessed me falling butt first into a movie theater lobby like I was sliding into home plate—let’s say, hypothetically, in the summer of 2007 when going to see Becoming Jane—she would totally make me feel better by reminding me about the time she awkwardly thought her mic wasn’t working at the launch of Kafka’s Motorbike. Or the time she showed up at a Tarts and Vicars party that wasn’t a Tarts and Vicars party. Or the time she made blue soup and marmalade for her birthday dinner. Jude, Shazzer and Tom are so lucky.
Melanie Wilkes – Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
If I’m hanging out with Becky Bloomwood and Bridget Jones all the time, I definitely need a Melanie Wilkes around to keep us all in check. Melanie would shake her head quietly and refuse to judge us, and she’d defend us until her last breath even during our most kooky antics. Melanie is absolutely the kind of gal you want in your corner, and is a reminder of just how far true kindness and faithfulness can take you. Plus, if we were bored, she could read us David Copperfield. I love David Copperfield.
Marianne Dashwood – Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
My friends make fun of me because I can get super passionate when talking about things I like (for instance, “Tom Hardy is the greatest actor of our generation….NAY, OF ALL TIME!”) and about things I don’t like (like a certain actor who terrifies the living daylights out of me but shall remain nameless here because this blog is a safe space). Let’s just say when I feel things, I feel them deeply, and I have been known to have a strong opinion or two in my life. Marianne would totally get that, and would make me look slightly less over the top. Plus I feel like she’d really be down with fangirling over One Direction with me.
Pepper Schuyler – The Schuyler Sisters Series by Beatriz Williams
Hanging out with Pepper Schuyler would be so much fun. She’s smart, strong, and just edgy enough to add a little wildness to this squad without making things too crazy. I don’t know if she’d necessarily want to hang out with us—she can be a tough nut to crack—but we’d make her, and she’d come to love us eventually. Pepper needs more girlfriends in her life! Also, it would be fun to see how often she could make dear Melanie blush. I’m guessing a lot.
Louisa Clarke – Me Before You and After You by Jojo Moyes
Friendship is a two-way street, and I want Lou in my squad because A) she needs friends! And B) she’s awesome and deserves more friends! Lou is simply the best and she could use a squad to tell her that every day and lift her up when she’s feeling blue. Plus, it’s my life goal to own this dress, or at least maybe borrow it? It would make up for the chocolate brown suede trench coat that could have been. Almost, anyway.
Who would you want in your literary squad? Sound off in the comments! And Happy Galentine’s Day, sweet readers!