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Top 10 Evil Villains from Children’s Literature

Does your favourite kids’ book feature a villain you loved to hate? We want to hear from you! Choose your all-time favourite kids’ book and click here to cast your vote as Better Reading compiles a list of Australia’s Top 50 Kids’ Books – by voting, you could WIN every book on the final list too!

For World Book Day, National Book Tokens asked 7,000 people in the UK and Ireland about their favourite villains (and heroes) from children’s literature and the results are in! Read about the Top 10 Heroes, their pics for modern kids’ classics, and head over to the National Book Tokens website for more information.

J.K. Rowling can sure write a fantastic villain, as there are three Harry Potter antagonists  in the Top 1o, with Voldemort at #1, that pink-hatted witch Delores Umbridge at #2 and wild haired and wild hearted Bellatrix Lestrange at #6.

Witches featured heavily in the list as a whole, with Janis aka The White Witch from the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis at #4 and Roald Dahl’s creepy Grand High Witch (of all the world) from The Witches at #8.

Cruella de Vil’s threat  to turn adorable puppies into a new fur coat in The One Hundred and One Dalmatians was enough to get her into the #3 spot, perhaps thanks to her memorable animated appearance in the Disney film adaptation.

Roald Dahl makes a second appearance at #5 with the unforgettable Agatha Trunchbull from Matilda. Miss Trunchbull abused her position as principal of Crunchem Hall Primary School, and heartlessly bullied Miss Honey, Matilda and all her friends. Who can forget the *gasp* Chokey?

Some villains manage to keep up their evil doings across many books, such as Mrs Coulter in Phillip Pullman’s  His Dark Materials series at #10, who continues to transform and change but stays consistently cruel. Every bad thing you can imagine happens to the Baudelaire children in Lemony Snicket’s Series of Unfortunate Events, many at the hands of Count Olaf – and he was only voted at #9!

Finally, a classic bad guy to close out the list – Bill Sikes from Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist at #7. His aggression towards Oliver, Nancy and even Fagin make him a menacing figure throughout the novel, and we’re not surprised he is still so feared today.

Would you have voted differently? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to vote for your favourite kids’ book here!

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