Like most people at the moment, all the editors at Early Bird Books are working from home, staying inside as much as possible and doing our best to help keep coronavirus from spreading. And the more time we spend indoors, the more we’ve been thinking about book characters who were also sequestered from the rest of the world—though not always by their own volition.
Below are 10 book characters most of us have felt like at one moment or another during our self-quarantines. From hermits to loners and even a castaway or two, we’re empathizing with all of our favorite isolated characters.
If you never liked going outside anyway...
To Kill a Mockingbird
Everybody’s favorite misunderstood recluse, Boo Radley rarely ventured outdoors, except to leave the occasional present for Scout and Jem.
If self-quarantine has put your dating life on hold...
If you wish your job was “essential” so you could leave the house...
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
In The Order of the Phoenix, Sirius was frustrated that everyone else was taking all the risks while he stayed cooped up at his childhood home, 12 Grimmauld Place.
If you are now addicted to online gaming…
Ready Player One
In Ready Player One, Wade Watts is living in a future where most people spend their time in OASIS, a virtual world created by an eccentric genius.
If you’ve been wearing the same sweatpants for a week…
Once left at the altar, Miss Havisham lives out her days in her ruined mansion and wears her wedding dress for the rest of her life. Honestly, we can hardly blame her.
If you’ve been spying on your neighbors for entertainment…
The Woman in the Window
In this psychological thriller book, Anna spends her days drinking wine, watching old movies and spying on her neighbors, the Russells. But one day, she sees something she shouldn’t.
If you’ve been taking on a lot of DIY projects…
Did you finally put up that shelf or paint that wall? Then you can relate to Robinson Crusoe, a castaway who spent 28 years on a remote desert island and dried his own raisins, raised goats, made pottery, hunted, and grew his own barley and rice.
If you’re quarantined with family and having a lot more fun than you expected...
The Swiss Family Robinson
Swiss Family Robinson
You may have seen the classic live action Disney film about a family that becomes shipwrecked on an island in the East Indies, but you’re missing out if you’ve never read the original book by Johann David Wyss. P.S.—you can keep the quarantine family fun going with these literary board games for book lovers.
If your cat is driving you insane…
Life of Pi
If your home is starting to feel like it’s not big enough for you and your cat, you can probably relate to Pi, who is stranded on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.
If you feel like you’re going insane…
The Woman in "The Yellow Wallpaper"
The Yellow Wallpaper
We don’t all do well on our own—especially in rooms with barred windows, “scratched and gouged and splintered floors,” and intricately designed yellow wallpaper.
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Featured still from "Great Expectations" via Lionsgate