Back in August, we thought it might be fun to imagine some of our favorite literary characters venturing into the world of online dating. Well, our experiment was such a hit with Bas Bleu’s readers that we’re back at it! After perusing our bookshelves (and sorting through your recommendations), we’ve penned personal ads for eight more of our fictional favorites.
Rhett Butler, Gone With the Wind
Shipping magnate and Charleston-bred scion with a weakness for lost causes longs for the love of a good (though not too good) woman. I have a low tolerance for Southern-belle simpering and childish tantrums, but high spirits and a spine of steel are a must. In the interest of full disclosure, I am no gentleman, but let’s be honest: How much fun would I be if I were? Only women who like to be kissed by someone who knows how need respond.
Emma Woodhouse, Emma
I am a lady of noble birth who has been so intent on playing matchmaker for my friends that I’ve neglected my own happiness. Of a proper gentleman I expect charm, grace, and above-average dancing skills…though these will be void if deception proves to be your true character. Romantic talk is nice, but the right man won’t waste time making speeches about his love for me—he will trust that I know what he is. And you should know: I always deserve the best treatment because I never put up with any other.
Gabriel Oak, Far from the Madding Crowd
Farmer seeks independent, strong-willed woman to be my partner in life and in love. Must not be afraid of hard work, mud, or crises. Deep connection to the land is a must; it is my heart and soul (until I marry). Though I have not material wealth or a tongue for pretty phrases, I vow to be constant, loyal, and true to you as long as I draw breath. In return, I hope that you will be the woman to astonish me.
Lady Macbeth, Macbeth
Lady of wealth and breeding seeks alliance with man of action undaunted by powerful women. I am committed to my political aspirations and require a partner who can help me achieve my goals. When I see what I want, I don’t let anything—or anyone—stand in my way. Cross me, and you will discover just how unforgiving I can be. Take note: I want a partner, not a lackey. The man worthy of me, his courage must be firmly screwed to the sticking place. Failure is not an option.
Busy, no-nonsense bachelor seeks intelligent verbal sparring partner. Applicants must be thoroughly honest, accepting of my keeping late hours, and willing to dress in disguise on occasion. Tidying and cooking skills a plus. Those in possession of these qualities—and who are not averse to being intimate with a smoker—may request an interview with myself and my colleague and advisor, Dr. Watson, at our rooms at 221B Baker Street, London. I strongly advise against telling even the tiniest fib.
Hester Prynne, The Scarlet Letter
I am a woman of the wilderness who strives to live above the petty politics and moralizing of my fellow man. As such, life has not been easy for me. Yet I’ve made my way as best I can, relying on the strength of my convictions even when doing so made me an outcast. I am faithful only to my daughter and myself: No man has yet proven himself worthy of my faith in him. Will you be the one to change that?
Heathcliff, Wuthering Heights
If I have to roam the moors for three lifetimes, I will find you. If this search for all-consuming love drives me mad, so be it! I don’t care if you’re promised to another or already married, your heart will be my heart, your breath will be my breath. And should you tear me to pieces with your bare hands I will love you still, I will want you still, and I will destroy anyone who dares to try and keep us apart!
The Narrator, Rebecca
Shy yet inquisitive young woman seeks worldly man to share life’s trials, blessings, and unexpected adventures. I am open to widowers, as long as you are kind and true; I know I cannot replace a beloved late wife, but hope to earn my own place in your heart. I have minimal experience managing household staff, but I welcome the advice and guidance of anyone currently in my husband’s employ.