Anna from Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins:
Anna’s life is thrown into disarray when she’s shipped off to boarding school in Paris, and as a reader, I love everything about being thrown into this wonderful mess with her. Confession time: I’ve reread this book A LOT. It’s a major comfort read for me, and I think the reason is Anna’s voice. She’s honest, real, and absolutely delightful. When she’s intimidated by the sights and sounds of Paris, I’m intimidated. When she swoons over the oh-so-charming Étienne St. Clair, I swoon. May you always get your French kiss, Anna Banana!
Noah from I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson:
I read this book last summer, and it blew me away. It has some odd parallels to Night Owls (and some of those parallels are spoilers, so I won’t go into those here), but this is one of the books that I can honestly say I wish I’d written. It’s amazing and beautiful, and everyone should read it. The story is told from the point of view of two siblings, and though I admittedly mostly enjoy the chapters from the girl, Jude, it’s her brother, Noah, that has me clutching my heart and reaching for a box of tissues. His unique voice and raw honesty can be hard to connect with at times, but I find his character completely refreshing.
Eleanor from Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell:
It took me a couple of tries to like this book. The first time, I only read a few pages and thought Eleanor was too young for my tastes. I put the book down. It collected dust. A few months later, I came back to it and tried again. What a fool I’d been. Eleanor is young. She’s naïve, beautifully written, and thoroughly tragic. I stayed up all night reading her, giving my husband updates about what was happening between her and her boyfriend, Park. Swoons were swooned. Gasps were gasped. Happy tears were shed. Eleanor stole my heart and broke it, and I’d happily allow her to do it all over again, any day.