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The Mentor Hall of Fame

Virtually anyone can benefit from having a mentor. And many writers have depicted such relationships in their work (although not always with the positive outcome that is characteristic of mentoring as compared to exploiting another person).

The following list of mentor pairs was compiled by Rey Carr from a variety of sources including autobiographies, biographies, newspaper articles, personal interviews, and diligent historical research.

If you know of mentor pairs that ought to be added, we have provided an opportunity for you to submit the names and details: Add a Mentor Pair.

  • British novelist, dramatist, lawyer and magistrateHenry Fielding (1707-1754) included mentors for his characters in two of his novels: A History of Tom Jones, a Foundling written in 1749; and in his novel Joseph Andrews (Abraham Adams) written in 1742.

  • In the first book of a trilogy, The Fifth Season: The Broken Earth: Book One by N.K. Jenisin (2018), the orogene Syenite is accompanied by her mentor while she discovers truths she was never meant to know.

  • In Nobel Prize winning author Hermann Hesse's novel, Demian, Max Demian is a key mentor to Emil Sinclair. "The notion of a mentor-mentee relationship is central to the book. Sinclair does not set out on the road to self-discovery alone. Rather, he is brought there by Demian and led through it by both Demian, Pistorius, and, in the end, Eva. For Hesse, unlike for many others, self-discovery does not mean sitting in a room alone and contemplating. Rather, it can be an interactive activity wherein one person helps another. In fact, these mentoring relationships are valuable to Sinclair not only because they lead him to change his world-view, but also for the friendship and kinship they provide. Some of the strongest emotions Sinclair ever feels are for his mentors."

  • Sigrid Nunez's 2018 book, The Friend, opens with the death by suicide of the narrator's literary mentor, who readers later learn had a number of character flaws, but who shared identical sources of inspiration with the narrator.

  • In Philip Kerr's book, The Winter Horses, a book for children and teens set in 1941 on a nature reserve in Ukraine, Baron Faiz-Fein is a mentor to Max.

  • In Meg Wolitizer's 2018 novel, The Female Persuasion, feminist Faith Frank is a mentor to college student Greer Kadetsky.

  • In Meg Wolitzer's 2018 book, The Female Persuasion, feminist Faith Frank is a mentor to college student Greer Kadetsky.

  • McKay Benson is a mentor to Charles James in the novel, The Broken Road by Richard Paul Evans.

  • Tommy Beresford and Tuppence Cowley, characters known as "accidental sleuths" in books by Agatha Christie, consider Mr. Carter their mentor.

  • Sgt. Preacher Boyd is a mentor to police officer Maureen Coughlin in Sarah Crichton's Let the Devil Out (crime fiction novel).

  • Law firm senior partner Howard Mankiewicz (played by Fred Melamed) is a mentor to lawyer Josh Segal (played by Nicholas D'Agoston) in the 2017 TV-series, Trial & Error.

  • Diane Lockhart (played by Christine Baranski) is a mentor to Maia Rindell (played by Rose Leslie) in the 2017 TV-series The Good Fight.

  • Ducky or Dr. Donald Mallard (played by David McCallum) is a mentor to Jimmy Palmer (played by Brian Dietzen) in the TV-series NCIS.

  • Dr. Isidore Latham (played by Ato Essandoh) is a mentor to Dr. Connor Rhodes (played by Colin Donnell) in the TV-series Chicago Med.

  • Rebecca Gorin (played by Sigourney Weaver) is a mentor to Jillian Holtzmann (played by KateMcKinnon) in the 2016 movie Ghostbusters, directed by Paul Feig.

  • Phillip Carroll (played by Edward M. Kelahan) is a mentor to Mike 'Wags' Wagner (played by David Constabile) in the TV-series Billions.

  • Retired judge Joseph Wapner (1920-2017), who played himself on The People's Court TV-show for more than 10 years was a mentor to Rusty Burrell (1925-2002), who was a court baliff in real life and played on on the People's Court TV-show.

  • Jacob Kahn is a mentor to Asher Lev in Chaim Potok's My Name is Asher Lev

  • Palmer Kincaid is a mentor to Grove O'Rourke in Norb Vonnegut's novel The Trust

  • Lotty Herschel mentor to V.I. Warshawski in Sara Paretsky's crime fiction novels about a private detective in Chicago

  • Socrates Fortlow mentor to Darryl in Walter Mosley's (2008) The Right Mistake

  • Hoppie Groenewald mentor to Peekay in Bryce Courtenay's book The Power of One. Details and photos (Requires membership in the Peer Resources Network)

  • Basil Hallward and Lord Henry Wooton mentors to Dorian Gray in Oscar Wilde's book, Picture of Dorian Gray. (Thanks to Robin Bonner for pointing out this connection.)

  • Doyler Doyle mentor to Jim Mack in Jamie O'Neill's book, At Swim Two Boys. (Thanks to Robin Bonner for pointing out this connection.)

  • Dr. O'Reilly mentor to Dr. Barry Laverty in Patrick Taylor's Irish love story, The Apprenticeship of Doctor Laverty

  • Sam (played by Danny Glover) mentor to Hally (played by Christopher Denham) in the play, Master Harold and the Boys, written by South African playwright Athol Fugard

  • One-Eyed Bill (fictional pirate) mentor to Robert Baden-Powell (Founder of the World Scout Movement Bio)

  • Sir Crammer Ballantine mentor to Kathleen Day Keswick in Marne Davis Kellogg's 2003 suspense novel, Brilliant

  • Big Ed Baumstein mentor to Buddy Palumbo in Burt Levy's 2002 novel, The Fabulous Trashwagon

  • Sergeant Gracey mentor to Detective David Swift in David Park's 2002 novel, The Big Snow

  • Sophia mentor to Manlius Hippomanes (the Bishop of Vaison) in Iain Pears' 2002 novel, The Dream of Scipio

  • Charles Lindbergh (aviator) mentor to Joe Allbright (pilot) in Danielle Steel's 2001 novel, Lone Eagle

  • Rubeus Hagrid mentor to Harry Potter in J.K. Rowling's 1999 book, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Book 1)

  • Dr. Kristian Beck mentor to Heather Monk in Anne Perry's 2002 book, Funeral in Blue

  • Marius mentor to Lestat in Anne Rice's 2001 book, Blood and Gold (Vampire Chronicles)

  • Saidah Samuels (a heart-based financial planner) mentors Iris (a dancer) in the areas of personal growth and financial healing in Tad Crawford's 2001 book, The Money Mentor: A Tale of Finding Financial Freedom

  • Don Juan mentor to Carlos Castaneda

  • Mary Crow (district attorney) mentored by Irene Hannah (federal judge) in Sallie Bissell's 2002 novelA Darker Justice

  • Don Pedro mentor to Claudio (characters in Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing)

  • Henry Tilney mentor to Catherine Morland (characters in Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey)

  • Dan Cody mentor to James Gatz (characters in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby)

  • Charles Dickens (Bio) mentor to Wilkie Collins (characters in William J. Palmer's 1994 book, The Detective and Mr. Dickens: Being an Account of the MacBeth Murders and the Strange Events Surrounding Them)

  • John Lambert mentor to Andrew Nash (characters in Paul Piers Read's 1997 talking book, On the Third Day)

  • Hayley Marx (police officer) mentor to Cindy Decker (police officer) (characters in Faye Kellerman's 2000 book, Stalker)

  • Merciless Marvin mentor to Raymond (characters in Jean Van Leeuwen's 1982 book, The Great Rescue Operation)

  • Judge Wilson Caufield mentor to Lauren Kingsley (characters in R.A. Foster's 1998 book, The Mentor)

  • Charles Davis mentor to Emma (characters in Sebastian Stuart's 1999 book, The Mentor)

  • Young King Arthur accepts a dragon as his mentor in Jane Yolen's 1990 book for young adult readers, The Dragon's Boy

  • Professor Dumbledore mentor to Harry Potter both characters in J.K. Rowling's national best seller, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

  • Aaron Weisfield (music teacher) mentor to Claude Rawlings (concert pianist) both characters in Frank Conroy's national bestseller, Body & Soul

  • Portia Damron mentor to Charles Davis (writer) both characters in Sebastian Stuart 's novel, The Mentor

  • Ben Potter (lawyer) mentor to Paul Madriani (lawyer) in the 1993 novel, Compelling Evidence by Steve Martini

  • Sir Arthur Desmond mentor to Thomas Pitt (police inspector) in the 1996 novel, Traitor's Gate by Anne Perry

  • Lord Toranaga mentor to John Blackthorne in the 1976 novel, Shogun by James Clavell

  • English professor Vergil Weldon is a mentor to Eugene Grant in Tom Wolfe's 1929 novel, Look Homeward Angel: A Story of a Buried Life.

  • Nero Wolfe, the hero detective in most of Rex Stout's detective mysteries, was a mentor to his assistant Archie Goodwin.

  • American author Ann Patchett's book State of Wonder (2018) is the story of a scientist, Dr. Marina Singh, who works for a pharmaceutical company and traces her mentor who has gone rogue in the Brazilian rain forest while developing a new drug.

  • In The Devoted (2018) by Blair Hurley, a woman wants to flee her Catholic family and find nirvana. She attaches herself to a Zen mentor who knows few boundaries.

  • Canadian author Esi Edugyan's book Washington Black (2018) is the story of a young slave who becomes a manservant to Christopher Wilde "Titch". As their relationship grows it becomes more of a mentor-protege relationship interrupted by the institution of slavery, a disfirguing and damaging aspect of any relationship.

  • In Canadian author Patrick DeWitt's book Undermajordomo Minor (2016), the main character, Lucien "Lucy" Minor, a melancholic 17-year old in a vague 19th century eastern European country takes a job serving a mysterious baron of a dilapidated castle. There he meets his mentor, engages with theives; and falls in love with a local girl.

  • Two boys, Pikelet and Loonie, growing up in a small seaside town in Australia in the 1970's, give up terrorizing girls and discover the sea and surfing. As they get older they meet their mentor, Sando, who helps them become more daring and deal with their fears, in Tim Winton's book,Breath (2008).

  • General Flem Pickering is a mentor to 'Killer' McCoy in the 1998 book by W.E.B. Griffin: The Corps, Book VIII In Danger's Path.

  • Teddy Price is a mentor to Billy Dunne in the 2019 book by Taylor Jenkins Reid: Daisy Jones & the Six.

  • Mountain master Xu is a mentor to detective Ava Lee in Ian Hamilton's 2019 novel The Mountain Master of Sha Tin.

  • Mountain master Xu is a mentor to detective Ava Lee in Ian Hamilton's 2019 novel The Mountain Master of Sha Tin.

  • Maxine is a mentor to Jade in a formal mentoring program in the 2017 novel by Renée Watson Piecing Me Together (Amazon). The novel focuses on the theme of struggling together to develop their relationship.

  • Jake Grafton is a mentor to Tommy Carmellini in Stephen Coont's 2019 novel, The Russia Account.

  • Domingo is a mentor to Nico in the 2016 novel Fever by Deon Meyer.

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