Another Top Ten Tuesday for you all this beautiful 10th of February, 2015! I'm especially excited for this pick by The Broke & The Bookish because I love romance in novels when it's done well. I'll ship it for eons <3
Here's My Top Ten Things I Like and Dislike When It Comes To Romances In Books.
So today, it's a topic I love talking about and go on and on and on about. Whether it be bad or good, it will be torn apart and analysed.
Top Five Likes <3
It's pretty clear that I love romances that take their time. In reality, people don't just fall in love with people in one glance and are dating and hot and heavy by the second day of knowing each other. It doesn't work like that, and if people actually do that in real life then it's not love, but infatuation. Slow Burns are the ones that have an occasional romantic scene together, maybe a little extended eye macking out and vulnerable moments where they let slip of their feelings for each other but not enough for a definitive understanding between each of them. They slowly build a friendship, trusting one another with their lives (If this is a novel where they are in life or death situations, like Hunger Games) or where they just slowly grow close to each other (Like Eleanor & Park, where they aren't in any life or death situations but it's still a love story)
Slow Burns tantalise you with the idea that yes, one day they will get together, BUT TODAY IS NOT THAT DAY AND YOU WILL SUFFER THEIR CUTE GAZES AND SLIGHT HAND TOUCHING BUT WITHOUT THAT DEFINITIVE SOUNDS OF CANONS! *Throws self off bed in sweet despair of all my Ships that are Slow Burns*
2. Snarky, Sassy, and Tease Each Other Relentlessly Which Turns Into Flirty-Teasing
Aww Yiss. Love interests who start off as characters who despise each other for reasons pertaining to establishing a leader, one of them is better than the other at something they both like and they feel competitive. Even though they speak towards each other with a wit sharper than your 20/20 vision that sees all, you know deep down that they're going to be gazing over each other and totally struggling with the fact that they love each other more than they care to admit but they can't reveal it because they don't want to lose or be the vulnerable one and they also think that the other one hates them. *Blows away like a squealing released balloon into a sea of Kawaii*
I live for this type of love. If I don't find a guy who will sass me so hard the only way to release that tension is to say, 'What are you going to do about it?' and then get macked out, I will be SORELY disappointed!
3. The Love Interests are Side By Side, not one being better/worse than the other.
I don't want to see in a novel which contains romance that one of the Love Interests comes off as whiney, needy, or damsel in distressy. I understand that everyone has baggage, weaknesses, and issues, but that doesn't mean that one of the Love Interests is this amazing, perfect, not one inch of flaw character and the other is this infatuated puppy that just follows them around, protected by the other because they can't do anything right, and just in general you wish would hurry up and cark it because they offer no more usefulness than being a plot device for the other character. I want to see romance where they both stand together to fight, whether that be against Monsters, The Bad Guys/Corrupt Government, or just life's struggles. I want them to support each other, rely on each other's strengths, and understand that the other one is capable and independent too.
4. Awkward Bumbling and 'Oh MY Gosh I love this person so much but I speak like a Goat' moments
Perhaps it's just because it resonates so much with me because whenever I start to speak to the guy that I'm interested in it's literally just a lot of 'uh ah umm hey umm uhh eyyy babey' kind of comments because my brain has decided to pack its bags and call it quits for it was never trained for this situation. Perhaps it's because I love being an on-looker to seeing this blossoming love and witnessing the fact that each of them has such power to make the other one THAT nervous just being around them. It's just so cute and awkward and you're just sitting there thinking, 'You can do it. I believe in you. Confess your undying love for each other becAUSE WE CAN ALL SEE IT BUT YOU CAN'T ASDFGHJKL!!'
5. Protecting Each Other From Disrespect or Danger
I always squeal and freak out and flail whenever I read/watch this. It hurts my soul and my feelings in the best way possible. Some would describe this as 'Protectiveness' and I agree to a point. I love it when I feel like a guy wants to protect me because he cares for me and wants me to be okay, not because I can't handle myself and I am like a Damsel In Distress. So whenever it comes up in TV Shows, Books, or Movies, I freak the crap out. Full on hyperventilating and fanning oneself. If a random guy disses the female protagonist, I love LOVE LOVE LOVE it when the male protagonist gets that jaw bite going on because he wants to take care of his love but understands that she might not want that, but when it persists he goes and defends her honour (Not in a royal battle, but perhaps in a bit of a 'Hey, don't be a jerk to women because none life you' kind of moment in books or shows) but if it came to it, the female protagonist could totally go and kick butt and protect her own honour. Likewise with the guy, if someone was bashing the dude, the female protagonist would threaten anyone who'd threaten him. It's the protectiveness that sends my heart aflutter!
(For example, Clarke and Bellamy from The 100 - Bellarke Ship. Check it out if you want a really amazing Slow Burn
Or Mikasa and Eren from Attack on Titan. She protects him and his honour)
Top Five Dislikes </3
I CAN'T STAND IT. UGH. NO. NO THANK YOU. STOP THIS IN ALL GENRES, EVER.
No one falls in love immediately. They don't tease each other, crush on each other, and then BOOM LOVE AND SACRIFICING THEMSELVES FOR EACH OTHER AND OH NO MAH LURVE. It's stupid. Why is this even a thing in books anymore? If you fall in love with someone immediately on a couple of sightings then clearly you are experiencing infatuation and need a reality check.
Check yoself before you wreck yoself.
(Key examples here are Tris and Four/Tobias from Divergent.
Or THE WORSE OF THEM ALL - Clary and Jace from The Mortal Instruments Series)
2. Love Triangles/Rectangles/Icsoagons.
I used to love it as a teeny bopper who just loved drama and all things that were complicated, but I grew out of that stage quickly. I despise Love Triangles because you can't even decide on who you like more, and that's a sign of a really obnoxious/whiny/vapid protagonist. They're childish, and in the end one will always lose and that's really sad and depressing to think about. I hate reading them, and every time it starts to rear its ugly head into the book I just want to nope straight out of there, but only will myself to further it because I'm already about a quarter of the way through the book.
Struggle is real guys, it's sorely real.
3. Love Interests who don't pay attention to the other until it's revealed that they are MADLY AND DEEPLY IN LOVE WITH THEM.
Stop this. I'm serious. You have this book and guaranteed you're a complete and utter idiot. If a guy/girl in real life does this to you, A VERY LARGE AND CLEAR CHANCE they are not interested in you and/or crazy and possibly stalkerish. Your first red flag should have been the fact that they act like you're a ghost.
"Hey there...I think you're cu-"
"Did you hear that?"
"Woah...did you feel the air just get 10x colder? Guys...I think it's a ghostly presence."
4. Full Blown R-Rated Action.
Okay, so you've known each other for approximately a week, and you've decided you're in the deepest of loves and you want to be together fore - Oh....OH. OH WHAT THE FRICK FRACK SNICK SNACK PADDY WACK ARE YOU DOING HOW DID THIS CHAPTER GO FROM A KISS TO THIS?
IT WAS ONLY A KISS.
IT WAS ONLY A KISS!
(How did it end up like this? Going from a cute PG relationship to a something extremely sexual and lusty. It completely turns me off the relationship then and I lose all hope in it because all it's become is physical.
Take for example Clary and Jace; Ugh I hate that fictional relationship so much I want it to be a real person so I can just punch it in the face and demand it give me back the time I spent reading that series while practically comatose in bed from sickness. Never. Again)
5. When the Romance Domineers Everything Else .
I want a filling plot with a delectable side of romance, not a whole banquet of JUST romance. It gets too much, I get too filled too quickly and then I don't even want to bother finishing it. To keep a story with romance from getting stale, it must be evenly spiced with a plot that is captivating and could hold its own without the romance beside it. It's a dish on its own.
(If you can't tell I'm super hungry and just want to eat some thigh fattening chips but no, I have to write to keep my mind occupiCHIPSCHIPSCHIPSCHIPSCHIIIIPPPS)
But to conclude, romance needs to be a factor in a much larger picture. If It's the only picture, and it sucks, the entire thing is trash and won't be read more than a few chapters. I WANT CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT AND PLOT DEVICES, YASSSS.
*Single tear falls down cheek*
I hope your favourite romances shall come to fruition and become your reality (Except if it's something like from Twilight or any of those Erotica Novels...then maybe you need a different type of reality and that's called a therapist for your inner realities)
Let me know what your favourite Ships/OTPs are! Because, after all -
"If my heart doesn't feel like it's going to explode into thousands of butterflies and my chest doesn't collapse underneath the pressure of my shrill screeching and my arms don't turn into giant inflatable noodles and the entire police force isn't outside the front of my house because they've heard reports of someone threatening to murder someone else's entire family and shove their head somewhere that probably doesn't exist in this sense because so-and-so are more canon than your life, I'm not shipping it hard enough."
Quote by Mwah