Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Thoughts on Romance

A weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Romance is always a tricky subject when it comes to my reading. I'm not a fan of Romance novels and because of that, I'm really picky when it comes to the Contemporary novels I enjoy. But I love romance to be part of the story. I never want to overpower the larger plot of the story but a great romance can make a good book even better, but then again bad romance can make ruin a book. So here is a list of some of my favorite and least favorite types of romances including some of my favorite and least favorite ships (potential OTP spoilers may be included)

Romantic Elements I Dislike  

1.) Instalove 

I know this is a really vague concept but I'm sure that you know what I mean. This is one of the most hated thing in romances I'm sure. But there really is nothing worse than a character who falls head over heals for a person almost the minute they meet them. It's so frustrating!
Example: Of Monsters and Madness by Jessica Verday, The Taken Trilogy by Erin Bowman

2.) When Good Girls love Bad Boys 
This is probably the most cliche romantic trope I just cannot get behind. Maybe it's a personal thing, I've never seen the bad boy appeal. But in general I just think that these kinds of romances never end well and the guy rarely treats the girl with any respect.
Examples: Hexed by Michelle Krys

3.) When Good Guys Love Manic Pixie Dream Girls
MPDG is one of my least favorite tropes that exists in movies and literature. I love a good quirky female character but MPDGs are frustrating and unrealistic. If a male protagonist that I am connecting with falls for a girl that is an MPDG I am so not on board.
Example: Looking for Alaska by John Green (I don't really hate this relationship like I thought I would but that's for other reasons)

4.) Love Triangles That Are Clearly Pointless
I usually don't hate these romances because I ship the ship, but you know what I'm taking about. When it's so obviously the MC is only interested in one person meanwhile the other one is all "but I'm also awesome and in love with you." Or even worse is when she can't make up her mind and you're like "it's so obvious!"
Example: A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray, The Maze Runner trilogy by James Dashner

5.) Unrequited Love
I really don't see this very often but this is a type of romance that I never really enjoy. If that main character is pining after a person that does not and will not love them back, it's just sad. I want the character to find love of course but they need to look elsewhere.
Examples: Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Romantic Elements I Love 

6.) Slowburn
This is also a general concept in romance but one that I always love. When the romance between characters develops slowly as the book develops and then it is so much more enjoyable. This way I feel like I am able to connect with the romantic lead at the same rate that the main character has.
Examples: Emily and Frank in Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson, Cath and Levi in Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, Vin and Elend in the Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson

7.) Opposites Attract
These are my absolute favorite kind of romances. I love when characters who seem to have nothing in common are attracted to each other and develop a romantic relationship. It usually doesn't start out as romantic which leads to a great slowburn and hilarious banter!
Examples: Chubs and Vida in The Darkest Minds Trilogy by Alexandra Bracken, David and Megan in The Reckoners Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson, Henry and Diana in the Luxe series by Anna Godbersen

8.) Enemies Becoming Lovers 
This is another variation of the opposites attract kind of romance but it takes things even deeper. I'm a big fan of when the characters really should hate each other and then they develop a romance. It's especially fun when we get to see them actively hating each other because it leads to fantastic banter!
Examples: Flynn Cormac and Lee Chase and This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

9.) Friends Becoming More Than That
This is always so fun! When people who already have a great relationship develop from friendship to romance I am totally on board. It usually results in some incredibly sweet romantic moments and always leads to a fantastic slowburn.
Example: Alina and Mal in the Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo (yes I ship Malina)

10.) Equality 
I mean this in numerous ways. For one, the guy treats the girl as an equal. Like they need each other like in The Lunar Chronicles. But also mean they are equally terrible that they completely deserve each other. I love a good tortured romance like in Wuthering Heights and but I also love a romance where the characters have equal amounts of respect for one another and treat the other person that way, like in Divergent.
Examples: Cress and Thorn in Cress by Marissa Meyer, Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, Tris and Four in the Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth

What about you? What are some of your favorite and least favorite kinds of romances. Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!


  1. Great list! I completely agree with your dislike of insta-love and love triangles that don't work. That's on my list as well. Like you, I do enjoy a slow burn when it comes to romance and friends becoming more…that's one of my favorites!

  2. #10 - YES! This is a huge must for me. There is nothing worse than one character trying to control and influence the other.
    And #4... When love-triangles are done badly, they can be all kinds of painful to read. Especially the pointless ones. I'm not a 100% against them - when they're done well, they can be a lot of fun to read, but when they're bad... le sigh :( (But, ooh I'm a shipper, too! I have my two, and that's it, no other choice needs to be made!)
    I LOVE slow burn romances. They're by a mile my favourite kind, and I really wish they were more common. Great list, Cassi!

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  3. Great list! Instalove is the worst! Great point in number 10! I hate when there's a controlling person in a relationship and when it's very one-sided.
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  4. OOOh nice! I agree with these too! Of course, love triangles I do hate, but sometimes they can be done pretty well. Not always, but enough that I don't roll my eyes permanently to the back of my head! Instalove is another that I hate hate hate and SO can't believe I forgot! Guess I haven't had it in my reads lately! YAY!

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  5. YES to ALL OF THIS. I prefer my romance to be a side-plot, not the main story. So book romances can be distracting and annoying to me. But I do love a good slowburn love.

  6. When good girls love bad boys—yes!!! I've never seen the appeal of the "bad boy" thing either. If you're a jerk or a dirtbag, I don't care how sensitive your soul is or how "misunderstood" you are if you can't act like a decent member of society.