Why Annabeth Chase is My Spirit Animal

If you've never read the Percy Jackson series, you're really missing out. It's full of thrilling adventures, memorable friendships, and most importantly, empowered female characters. Annabeth Chase is one of the main characters of the series and she stands apart from the rest. She's brilliant and flawed, strong and emotional-- basically, an ideal character to admire. I read the Percy Jackson series in elementary school and I still love Annabeth with all my heart. The author of the series, Rick Riordan, continues to write books in the Percy Jackson universe and Annabeth is featured in almost every one of his novels. I thought after reading the Harry Potter series, I'd never love another fictional character as much as Hermione, but I love Annabeth just as much and you should too!

1. She is a tomboy and proud of it.

When I was in elementary school, I was the only tomboy in my group of friends. Other girls would tease me and that bothered me until I read about Annabeth. She's athletic and has more guy friends than girls. She always wears comfy clothes and no dresses. I was shocked after reading this; even Hermione, one of my other favorite characters, liked to dress up. Finally, I could read about a tomboy character that wasn't labeled strictly as "butch." While I agree that there should be more lesbian characters in books, I related to Annabeth because she was a tomboy who just happened to be straight like me.

2. She proves that being "a dumb blond" isn't a thing.

I believe that one of the reasons women can't get ahead politically and culturally is that we are still pitted against each other by society. In school, all the gossip was that blond girls were "dumb." I didn't know if this was true or not until I read about Annabeth. Her first description in the book series is that she looked like a stereotypical blond beach girl. Riordan then breaks every stereotype about blond girls. Annabeth is clever, wise, and industrious. She's the daughter of Athena, goddess of wisdom, so Annabeth is known for her intelligent mind. Throughout the series, Annabeth proves time and time again that she is one of the smartest characters. From solving the puzzle of a labyrinth to answering complicated riddles, there seems to be nothing that this girl can't do!

Nature River Baseball Cap

3. She is intellectually and physically powerful.

As already mentioned, it is common for female characters in books to be stereotyped into just one category: the geeky girl, the sporty girl, the annoying girl, the flirty girl, etc. What I love about Annabeth is that she is a complex female character; she's bookish but also outdoorsy. She's a little bit introverted and extroverted; she loves to spend time alone but also goes off on adventures with friends all the time. Annabeth is a realistic woman, especially when it comes to her inner strength. Her mother Athena is also the goddess of battle strategy, so Annabeth is skilled in hand-to-hand combat. She is skilled with both a sword and a dagger. Annabeth shows young readers that girls can be strong and muscular but still be smart in their own right.

Arianna Tucker-Girl Putting Hair In Ponytail

4. She encourages other young women.

Usually, women are pitted against each other not only in real life but in books too. Hermione and Lavender fight over Ron in the Harry Potter series, and this is just one example of a problematic love triangle. However, when another girl is interested in the same guy Annabeth is, Annabeth doesn't hold a grudge. Sure, there are some awkward moments between the two girls, but Annabeth never acts petty and immature. Annabeth doesn't need a man to define her after all! Also, Annabeth starts off in the series with just guy friends and that's great, but she never tears down other girls. I love how open-minded and accepting Annabeth is of people from different backgrounds and beliefs. Annabeth makes lasting friendships with both Piper and Hazel and the girls all support each other.

Molly Peach-Girls Laughing At Night

5. She admits her flaws.

Annabeth is stubborn, but never dishonest. While Annabeth is a hero, she does have some flaws. There's this scene in the Percy Jackson series that's always stuck out to me. Annabeth and her friend Percy are talking about fatal flaws. Percy doesn't know what his is, and that says a lot about how men are raised to think of themselves. Unlike Percy, Annabeth admits to feeling self-conscious and that her flaw is pride. Annabeth can be proud and stubborn, especially when she thinks she's right. It's refreshing to have a flawed female character who still sees herself as a hero. Reading this scene made me admire Annabeth even more.

The Lalatwo Friends Looking At City Skyline

6. She is supportive of all of her friends.

Annabeth treats all her friends equally. Even though Percy is her best friend, she holds him accountable for all his mistakes. Annabeth is loyal to all her friends no matter what. She never changes her personality based on if she's hanging out with her guy friends or girl friends. Annabeth treats everyone equally and it's difficult to even tell that she has a best friend. She loves her friends as family and is always there to comfort them.

Girl Lying On Bed

7. She is a fair leader.

One of my favorite aspects of the Percy Jackson series is how Riordan has the female characters take charge. While Percy is the main character and is a leader, he shares his responsibilities with other characters, or gives up his power entirely. Women are always in the front lines of the battle chapters. Annabeth is a natural-born leader and she fights alongside anyone she is loyal to. Annabeth and Percy's relationship is equal and fair and they both know how strong the other is. In one dramatic moment, Annabeth actually jumps in front of Percy in battle to save him. What a role reversal! Usually it's the man saving the woman, but in this book series, Annabeth can do anything.

The Lalalaptop Cup Of Tea

8. She accepts help from others, but knows when to stand up for herself.

While I love reading about independent female characters, this has become a trope. I think everyone needs to be independent, but sometimes we all need help. Annabeth is a strong, independent woman, but she asks for help when she needs it. She never goes on missions alone and comes to rely on her friends as the series continues. Annabeth can defend herself, but she also is smart enough to know where her weaknesses lie. I love reading scenes between Annabeth and Percy because they are great examples of a supportive friendship.

men holding up a banner for women's equality

9. She never lets a man control her.

Annabeth may be willing to receive help, but she is also a problem solver. If Percy tries to take over a quest or challenges her to a swordfight, Annabeth will take him on! Annabeth is confident enough to know her own worth. She never lets a relationship with a guy change her, and she stays true to herself. She never asks permission from anyone, and it's wonderful to see her confidence grow throughout the book series.

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10. She is one of the best examples of a female character written by a man.

I don't know how he did it, but Rick Riordan managed to create an inspiring and unforgettable female character in Annabeth Chase. All my other favorite female characters are written by women, so I find Riordan's portrayal extraordinary. I hope future male writers look to Riordan as an example of how female characters should be written: complex, confident, and relatable.

Laura Claypool-Feminist Black Baseball Cap Girl