For the New Yorker's Page-Turner blog, Anna Holmes studies the scriptures of the Fictional Nerd Girl Holy Trinity: Lisa Simpson, Scout Finch, and Harriet the Spy.
Both Fitzhugh and Lee’s heroines are uninterested in, and occasionally contemptuous of, heterosexual coupling. (You can’t blame them: there are few, if any, functional romantic relationships in either book.) …Though Scout’s closest male companion is her older brother, Jem, she and her best friend, the towheaded Charles Baker (Dill) Harris, briefly conduct half-hearted, playful attempts to get engaged. “Dill had asked me earlier in the summer to marry him, then he promptly forgot about it,” Scout explains. “He staked me [...]