Let me tell you, this was hard to narrow down. I stuck to YA because that's what I read most of the time, and I went with the first characters that popped into my head. I'm sure I'm probably overlooking scads of really great characters, but since we don't want to be here all day...
(In no particular order. All books are linked to their Goodreads descriptions.)
1) Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games series)
Despite driving me a little bonkers when it came to Peeta, Katniss is one of the best YA characters ever. She's self-sacrificing, stubborn, tough, and smart. Katniss is a survivor despite the unfavourable odds.
2) Peeta Mellark (The Hunger Games series)
Peeta's one of those all-around great characters. He's steadfast and loyal, clever, strong in more ways than just physical. Peeta's self-sacrificing, artistic, and his love for Katniss is unconditional. Team Peeta! ☺
Of all the characters listed here, Katsa's probably the one I'm most envious of. I would love to have her fighting/survival skills. Katsa is a kickass and compelling character, but she's still relatable.
Po's another one of those book boys who puts up with a lot from his book lady. Katsa's a handful, and Po just takes it all in stride. He's loyal, understanding, strong but gentle, and a skilled fighter.
5) Hermione Granger (Harry Potter series)
Hermione's the spokesmodel for bookish gals the world over. She makes being smart and nerdy look really good, which is just fantastic. Hermione can kick your butt with a thousand different spells.
6) Karou (Daughter of Smoke and Bone)
Such a unique individual in so many respects. Karou is memorable for so many reasons, but I don't want this to get all spoilery. I pretty much just love every little thing about Karou. End of story.
7) Lola Nolan (Lola and the Boy Next Door)
Speaking of unique, Lola stands out in my mind for that reason in particular. Her love of costume as everyday fashion made me smile. I envy her confidence, and how she's unafraid of standing out.
Aly's kind of stuck in the shadow of all the powerful adults who surround her, so it's awesome to see her come into her own. She's witty, determined, and a skilled spy, which is pretty darn cool.
9) Four (Divergent)
I'll try to avoid descending into fangirl squealing. Four embodies what the original intent of his faction, Dauntless, was supposed to be. He's brave despite his fears, strong, loyal, and intelligent.
10) Saba (Blood Red Road)
The first thing that springs to mind when I think of Saba is her voice. The book is written in Saba's dialect, and it has a way of lodging itself in your memory. I loved it! To borrow from Goodreads: Saba is "a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent." Unique and compelling.
Which YA characters would you give the label UNFORGETTABLE?
P. S. I just realized I forgot about Cinder (Cinder). A cyborg Cinderella? Totally memorable!