Some literary families are amazing, and you want to be a part of them from the second you open the novel’s cover. For example, who doesn’t adore Molly Weasley? She made Harry Potter — and every Potter fan — feel as if we were a part of the Weasley clan. If Molly had enough time, she would probably knit a Weasley sweater for every one of us.
For every amazing literary family, though, there’s one that’s not so great. A family that makes you forgive your own family for any small indiscretion, because you realize that it could be so, SO much worse.
The holidays can sometimes be stressful, with lots of relatives gathering under one roof... all of them asking you over and over again what your plans for the future are, whether or not you're in a relationship, when you're finally planning on settling down. Doesn’t that sound festive? As much as you love your family and all your relatives, it’s true that funny and crazy things can sometimes happen when they’re all in one place. But for every time you sigh and tell that one great aunt that no, you don’t know what your five year plan is, just remember: it could be worse. You could be part of one of the following literary families. These people make a few arguments and rolled eyes look like nothing, so keep them in mind this holiday season.
The Karenins From Anna Karenina
Anna Karenina literally opens with the famous line, "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is
unhappy in its own way." So you know you're in for an extreme family drama, and Tolstoy doesn't disappoint.
Hamlet's Family From Hamlet
Claudius poisons his brother and then marries his brother's widow. He sends people to spy on his nephew, who grapples with whether or not he should kill his uncle. There are weird vibes between Hamlet and his mother, and even the extended family — Ophelia's family — has a lot of issues. Eventually the family self-destructs in what is not exactly holiday fun time.
The Hazes From Lolita
Humbert Humbert marries Charlotte Haze to be close to her young daughter Dolores (aka Lolita), and it all goes downhill from there.
The Gaunt Family From Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince
Violent and evil, the Gaunt family lives in squalor and misery. Merope ends up giving birth to Voldemort, and the whole family tale is really just sad. No wonder Tom Riddle Jr. grew up to be so horrible — he never got a Weasley sweater from this family.
The Dracula Family From Dracula
Count Dracula and the Weird Sisters trap people in their castle and literally suck their blood. Not ideal.
The Earnshaws From Wuthering Heights
The Earnshaws adopt Heathcliff, but he's hardly treated as a true member of the family. Daughter Cathy is spoiled and wicked, son Hindley is scheming and jealous, and the family dynamic is riddled with manipulation. Talk about family drama.
Nick And Daisy From The Great Gatsby
Cousins Nick and Daisy are obsessed with Jay Gatsby, but their love can only end in tragedy.
The Reed Family From Jane Eyre
The Reeds are awful to Jane, and they verbally and physically abuse her during her time living with them. They won't even let her read a book in peace, and they lock her in the room where her uncle died. Not fun.
The Price Family From The Poisonwood Bible
The women of the Price family try their best, but patriarch Nathan is constantly leading them down difficult paths. He doesn't ever consider what's best for his family, and his ignorance becomes downright dangerous for them.
The Blackwoods From We Have Always Lived In The Castle
Merricat and Constance seem like cool sisters. Just don't eat any berries at their dinner table.
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