More often than not the protagonist in a tale gets all of the glory. Sometimes the villain shares the limelight, but are attention is squarely on the hero. But what of the sidekicks? Those secondary characters who aide, encourage, and offer back up in the form of serious butt-kicking? They deserve their chance in the limelight and to that purpose I’m listing my ten most favorite sidekicks.

Derek Gaunt (Magic Series–Ilona Andrews)

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You meet Derek early in Magic Bites and he goes on to play the largest role of any secondary character in the series. A werewolf who was brought into the Pack after killing his loop father who’d tortured and killed his siblings, Derek has a dark side that becomes more pronounced after events in the third series. However, his wit is an excellent foil to Kate. He’s also loyal and has one of the best half-forms of any shapeshifter in Atlanta.

Brom (Eragon–Christopher Paolini)

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Brom is perhaps one of the oldest secondary characters I’ve ever come across in a story. First introduced as the village storyteller, he travels with Eragon, teaching everything he knows about the Riders while helping him stay one step ahead of the Empire’s agents. The fact that Brom ends up sacrificing himself to save Eragon’s life only elevates his sidekick status in my book. Despite his death occurring in Eragon, Brom’s story–and his connection to Eragon–continues through the entire saga, ensuring that you won’t soon forget him.

Brooklynn (The Pledge Series–Kimberly Derting)

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One of two friends to the protagonist Charlaina in The Pledge Series, Brooklynn is a complicated character who can be caring and selfish, sensual and a strong young woman in equal measure. The fact that she is a spy for the resistance and can kick people’s butts like nobodies business adds points in my book. We need more sidekicks like Brooklynn in the literary world.

Alpha Trion (Transformers:Exodus-Alex Irvine)

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While Alpha Trion is rarely seen at Optimus’ side, as one of the Thirteen Primes and the one who sets our beloved Autobot on his path to leadership, his impact upon what Optimus’ says and does in the series cannot be ignored. Similarly to Brom, he’s a wise old guide whose lived too long, but tries to help the protagonist obtain his goals which include peace to Cybertron.

Sybella De’Albert (His Fair Assassin Trilogy–Robin LaFevers)

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Sybella’s inclusion in this list could be debatable for some as each book in the trilogy is told from the perspective of a different character (Dark Triumph is told from hers). Still, in the two other books Sybella is a dark horse with a sultry personality to match that of Brooklyn in The Pledge Series, but whose origins are much darker. Despite the darkness in her past, she’s steadfast and loyal to her two friends and works with them to keep their countries Duchess safe.

Cloud (The Immortals Series–Tamora Pierce)

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While a horse, Cloud is one of the most opinionated characters I’ve ever come across. She plays a larger role than most animal characters thanks to the Daine’s–the protagonist–wild magic which allows her to heal and speak to animals. Animals that have prolonged contact with her also become more intelligent. All of this applies to Cloud who fights to protect Daine and doesn’t hesitate to tell her–or anyone–what she thinks of them.

Faithful (Song of the Lioness–Tamora Pierce)

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Another faithful animal companion, Faithful cannot voice his thoughts as Cloud can, but sense he was gifted to her by the Goddess I don’t see how you could complain. Appearing to Alanna in the beginning of In the Hand of the Goddess, Faithful is not an average cat and can sense things such as whom is trustworthy. The fact that he later sacrifices himself to save Alanna makes him a sidekick to remember.

Bitterblue (Graceling–Kristin Cashore)

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Bitterblue is an amazing character because she is forced to act as an adult at an incredibly young age. You meet her when Katsa and Prince Po go to investigate her father under suspicion that he had Po’s grandfather kidnapped. Doing so uncovers a dark and terrible secret at a kingdom’s heart that will place the protagonists–and Bitterblue–in grave danger. While young, Bitterblue is strong, determined, and does everything she can to help the protagonists succeed.

Christina (Divergent Series–Veronica Roth)

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Tris’ best friend after they both transfer to Dauntless, Christina is a funny, strong, and very opinionated character. She looks out for Tris as they both try to survive in their new home and they work well together. When something Tris is forced to do hurts Christine and nearly destroys their relationship you immediately want these to to patch it up and work together to bring down those who threaten their home.

Dahli (Magic Series–Ilona Andrews)

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A vegetarian weretiger who performs magic curses, drives like a demon from the lowest reaches of hell, and is ridiculously klutzy, Dahli doesn’t get as much page time as Derek, but is a hilarious character to see featured in the novels all the same. You first meet her in Magic Strikes after Kate and Jim bring evidence back from the enemy HQ that they need her to analyze. Afterwards, she shows up periodically in the novels and has her own two novels featuring Jim in her adventures. Every time I see her in one of these books, her antics make me laugh.

Don’t get me wrong–the Protagonist is important, but the sidekick plays an important role. Now that I’ve shared mine, tell me what yours are.

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