The Tiny Cooper Award for Best Supporting Character (TCABSC, pronounced Tuh-Cab-Skuh) was created to honor those special guys and gals who, while not the main focus of the book, are still extraordinary. The Tiny Coopers (Will Grayson, Will Grayson), Anitas (West Side Story), and Robins (Batman) of the fictional world may not always get the girl (or guy), but sometimes they fulfill their role of supporting or obstructing the lead character in such a phenomenal way that it deserves special notice. This attention now comes in the form of an imaginary award made up by me. Hey, they’re not the main characters, so they have to take what they can get.
This Tiny Cooper Award for Best Supporting Character goes to: Zuzana from Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Days of Blood & Starlight, and Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor.
In lieu of five other nominees, here are five reasons why Zuzana is awesome:
(spoilers for the three-book series
1) She is uber talented. Zuzana comes from a family of puppet makers, but she takes the art to a new level. Her final project for art school is a street performance where she dances, acting as a marionette, attached by strings to a giant puppet. So the puppeteer is actually the puppet! Brilliant!
2) She is super brave… When Zuzana and Mik track Karou down in the Moroccan desert, rather than wait for her to wake up to accompany them, Zuzana insists that Mik and she head downstairs on their own to eat dinner with the chimaera. Despite a language barrier, Zuzana manages to make friends with the chimaera, earning a nickname.
3) …except when it comes to talking to boys. Rather than approach her crush—and subsequent Night of Cake and Puppets, the e-novella about their first date. It will make you feel all warm and mushy.
4) The woman knows how to make a wish. How are we going to get to Karou and the other rebels? Oh, I know, I’ll use my gavriel to get the most giant, fierce, untamable bird in all of Eretz to fly us there. How did you guys get to the rebel headquarters in Eretz? Oh, we came through the portal and caught a stormhunter. No biggie.
5) She is a really good friend. When Karou’s crappy ex-boyfriend Kaz gives his thousandth interview about Karou, Zuzana tries to convince her boyfriend Mik to pee on Kaz’s head. When that doesn’t work, she throws down a balloon full of perfumey feathery paste, rejoicing when footage of the resulting explosion is broadcast again and again on the news.