Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists?

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Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists?

Postby Naniyue » Sat Jun 27, 2015 12:03 am

!!! Please do not leave sarcastic or snide remarks, etc. !!!

In spite of being one of the hungriest gamers around (I'm ALWAYS looking for more games!), I also read. While I mostly read sci-fi and fantasy, the occasional modern day or historical fiction work is OK. My problem, however, lies with the protagonists. I keep coming across books that, while otherwise seem enjoyable, have central characters that often drink, smoke, and/or sleep around. While there is nothing wrong with writing about such figures, I just cannot jive with them, and thus the stories lose some, or a lot, of their magic for me. Are there any fictional works any of you can suggest that have the main character NOT do such?

Here are a few examples of who I don't like, regardless of whether or not I liked the book(s) in general:

Henry from The Time Traveler's Wife.
Steve from The First Annual Grand Prairie Rabbit Festival.
Corwin from the Chronicles of Amber.
Julius from Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom.

And here are a few of examples of who I DO like:

Kivrin from Doomsday Book.
Arthur Dent from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series.
Max "the Wolf" from Down the Mysterly River.
Wuntvor from The Wanderings of Wuntvor.

This is not a thread about which books or characters suck or which are cool, as such is always up to interpretation. It's also not about arguing over the varying magnitudes of sin, vice, and actions taken. I just want to read more often about characters who don't do that stuff.

Thank you.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby ShadowTiger » Sat Jun 27, 2015 11:20 am

I thoroughly enjoyed The Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind. Richard is a person that I can definitely, absolutely, truly idolize for his core beliefs. I would list the magnitude of his deeds, but I don't want to spoil anything.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby Scripten » Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:26 pm

A good amount of "classic" science fiction involves such characters. Larry Niven's Ringworld has Louis Wu, who is relatively virtuous along the lines of what you're looking for. He's a bit of a pragmatist, though. More faithfully along those lines would be the main characters from Asimov's Foundation books. While there are occasionally bad people, most of the main cast is led by their consciences. Sometimes that can get muddled, but it's not usually too bad. In both of these cases, the characters often "sleep around", but they don't go against the grain of their societies.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby idGamer » Sat Jun 27, 2015 10:14 pm

If you like science fiction novels, I'd recommend checking out the works of L.E. Modesitt Jr. if you haven't already. His protagonists usually fit the bill you're looking for,
although there are probably a few exceptions. I'd especially recommend The Eternity Artifact and perhaps Adiamante.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby Blox » Sun Jun 28, 2015 7:03 am

You should check out the Bartimaeus trilogy.
It's quite fun.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby kodi » Sun Jun 28, 2015 10:42 am

Read Anansi Boys! It's a really charming novel about a meek and perpetually embarrased man who finds out his late father was actually an african trickster god, which results in him reuniting with his polar opposite twin brother. It's a pretty wholesome book with lots of character development and humor.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby Scripten » Sun Jun 28, 2015 5:22 pm

kodi wrote:Read Anansi Boys! It's a really charming novel about a meek and perpetually embarrased man who finds out his late father was actually an african trickster god, which results in him reuniting with his polar opposite twin brother. It's a pretty wholesome book with lots of character development and humor.


Ironically, American Gods (Essentially the prequel to it) is entirely the opposite of this.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby demo_the_man » Sun Jun 28, 2015 6:29 pm

Heres a good list i would recommend to anyone
The moon is a harsh mistress
Starship Troopers
6th column
The puppet masters
Citizen of the galaxy
Have Space suit will travel

Hope you enjoy, these are some really good books, by Robert Heinlein
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby Naniyue » Sun Jun 28, 2015 7:28 pm

Thank you for the variety of recommendations! A few of these are already in my collection, though I haven't read all of them yet, but others are truly new to me. It's nice to think that there are more such characters out there than I thought.
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Re: Book recommendations with decently virtuous protagonists

Postby Matt » Mon Jun 29, 2015 12:59 am

A Tale of Two Cities
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