So, I got into an interesting conversation on Twitter today with The Excellent Library girls. Oh yeah, and SABAA TAHIR AKA AUTHOR OF AN EMBER IN THE ASHES AND FORTHCOMING SEQUEL A TORCH IN THE NIGHT.
It was epic. And it started with this:
The Excellent Library ladies were all for it; I, on the other hand, was skeptical. Why eat (ruin?!) potato chips with chocolate if I can just eat pretzels covered in chocolate, which are without a doubt infinitely better? And then, as was pointed out, if we’re discussing chocolate covered snacks, strawberries win anyway, SO WHO CARES. But as these convos often do, it got me thinking: Which snack would Laia, Tahir’s protagonist of An Ember in the Ashes, be? Would she be salty + sweet, or a double layer of sweet + juicy? And what would other book characters be? Let’s see…
Laia, An Ember in the Ashes: So, there’s really no question here. Laia’s ONE HUNDRED PERCENT chocolate covered pretzels. Laia is strong beyond even her own belief, and manages to make decisions and opportunities for herself that she never previously imagined. While she starts out the book a little naive, that little bit of melted chocolate hardens around her and she uses her salt – aka her strong will – to bring out her best in every situation, even the terrifying ones. Laia is obviously the best snack.
Shazi, The Wrath and the Dawn: In the realm of chocolate covered snacks, Shazi’s the winner of another pretty phenomenal one: chocolate covered strawberries. “But how?!,” you ask me. “Shazi’s too strong and smart to be so sweet!” And sure… except she’s not. She’s got that hardened exterior, of chocolate, built to keep the evil Caliph out of her head and heart, but she’s a lover truly, not a fighter. All of her fights are motivated by love. When you get inside of her shell, you see that.
Mark Watney, The Martian: Okay, so I admit, when the conversation started about chocolate covered potato chips, I was not on board. I’m still not sure I am. But is there any other POSSIBLE option for Mr. Watney? Nope. He makes potatoes last, and therefore he is a potato. Plus, it fits on other levels. Mark manages to stay sassy (salty) and level headed (aka smooth aka chocolate) despite the fact that he’s literally trapped alone on Mars. He’s a choco covered potato.
Pocket, The Serpent of Venice: Pocket would definitely be one of two things: chocolate covered pomegranate seeds, or chocolate covered acai berries. And here’s why: Pocket needs that bit of kick, that little odd flavor that you’re not quite sure where it is or why it’s there but it’s TOTALLY there. You know what I mean? (No, no you probably don’t…) The first time I tried choco-covered acai berries, I got that little pucker of the lips when something is too sour. But they weren’t sour, their flavor was just unexpected. And that’s exactly how I reacted to pomegranate seeds. It’s also exactly how I reacted to Pocket. He was so unexpected in every way, and he worked in all of the right and wrong ways, just like these snacks!
Tris, Divergent: Sorry to all the dark chocolate lovers out there, but I’m not one of you. There’s just something about it that I’m not a fan of, even though I want to be. What I do love, however, are oranges. And that’s what Tris is: a dark chocolate covered orange. When we start, we see Tris as an unassuming teen who doesn’t make waves but also doesn’t like her life. It’s only after she’s able to peel off the chocolate that she can get to her best self:an citrus-y, flavorful orange.
Gale, The Hunger Games: Gale is rough around the edges, which doesn’t bode well for chocolate. He also seems cold, even though he’s not really – he’s actually super soothing to Katniss, and their two families. Basically, Gale is chocolate covered mint candies (Helloooooooooooo Junior Mints). While many of Gale’s reactions and thought processes seem cold and unforgiving, you have to remember that he’s been through a lot and does what he thinks he needs to do to survive. So sure, he’s minty in that way, but he’s also chocolate – he lets Katniss in against all odds, even when he knows she favors (lol get it) someone else because he’s loving.
Remy, This Lullaby: Chocolate covered almonds. Is there anything MORE Remy than choco-covered almonds? When we first meet Remy, she’s calculating, she’s stiff, she unyielding – exactly like an almond! But Remy’s not just a bitch; she doesn’t want to get hurt, and we see how Dexter affects her. She’s fiercely loving and protective of her mother and her friends, showing everyone else what we knew all along: she’s sweet, just like the milk chocolate that surrounds her!
And, back to where we began… Elias, An Ember in the Ashes: I won’t lie, this is the hardest one! Elias thrives on his own but feels trapped. Nothing is ever “trapped” when its covered in chocolate. But then I realized what he is: Chocolate covered bacon. I know, I know, completely out of the box here. But hear me out. Elias is a super strong character who can stand on his own and is held down by pretty much nothing (except the establishment…and his mom…). So what could make him better? Well, in his case in the book, taking off his Mask. That’s akin to bacon being wrapped in chocolate. It’s opposite, but the same. Elias is more chocolate than bacon, really. He wants to be soft and loving, but he’s taught to be bold, flavorful if you will. In reality, he’s both, and that’s okay! He’s chocolate covered bacon.
Can’t wait to see how the chocolate covered pretzel and chocolate covered bacon do in their sequel later this summer!
What do you think, lovely readers? What chocolate covered snacks are your favorite book characters?