Tuesday, September 1, 2015

that awkward topic of romance, with a bunch of words and pictures

Please do!: Please do!

So a few weeks ago I talked about what I don’t like in bookish romance. Now I’m back to talk about what does work for me. I tried to put these in categories, but I think a lot of them intertwine and cross. I’ll almost threw organization out the window, but I controlled myself and tried to be. . . not as confusing as I normally am.

the slow burn

Things stay the same but then they change

 This is the exact opposite of almost everything on my other post. I happen to like it when they slowly fall for each other. They get to know each other, whether it's a bumpy ride or they're just good friends. A lot of the categories below can fall under this one.

the friendship to love

They are already familiar with each other to the point of reading each other's minds. They can predict each other’s next words or actions. They KNOW each other inside and out. 

Hahha ... yeah: Hahha ... yeah

Then there’s the adorable, awkward stage in between when they realize they like each other but aren't sure what to do about it. Finally though the familiarity comes back and now this duo is just so natural that there’s no way off this ship.

the arch enemies


This one is even better! Why? Because it's funny.

They meet. They irk each other. 

The arguments are pitted with Jedi death glares. (Do Jedi have death glares?)

The name calling gets intense. 


Then the horrific happens. They have to work together and or understand each other for survival (because that’s the only thing that’ll make them get along).

*gasp* really?! Treasure Planet and this conversation was one of the best!

And- AND- 

That's how people fall in love.


The Kiss

You know the one. How can you not? It's the one we've all been waiting for only ever!

I love it when the author makes us wait for the kisses. Throws us in suspense. Gives us teasing hope that maybe this time. But no, not this time. Maybe the next chapter, and then we’re hoping maybe the next book. 

Oh, come on! At least the last book of the trilogy! Is it ever even going to—


So I normally wouldn't pin something like this...but. I find it amusing: So I normally wouldn't pin something like this...but. I find it amusing

 Can I just say Cinder and Kai? I'm going to say it.

Cinder and Kai in Cress. That was the most epic The Kiss. The most epic The Moment of my whole reading history (I almost said career, but sadly I don't get paid to read).

This is just the best way to do it. This right here. Marissa Meyer is a genius. 

Platonic love ?: Platonic love ?

it started off platonic

I love the platonic relationships. Those are seriously the best. Then it grows to more BUT-

The couple still keeps each other as confidants. They still talk about the things they would talk about. They still share insights and epiphanies and general cleverness. Meaning, nothing was taken away from their original relationship, yet something was added.

.: .

"we admit to nothing." 

You know that couple who isn't a couple? Never in a million years would they ever confess to it. They're a lot like the "irk each other duo." They tease each other. Sometimes disgust each other. But they get caught watching each other, by each other. They are subtly protective or concerned for each other’s' well-being.

Frozen, gif, romance

Of course, their friends notice. Either said friends poke fun at them and the fragile romance shatters under pressure or stagnates, or their friends wisely say naught and watch, and wait, and watch, and-

Yeah, they'll be waiting a long time. But isn't it just adorable? How tentative and subtle those two are? They’re often found in MG.

Valentine: Valentine

Don’t forget the name calling. Got to love the name calling.

Percy and Annabeth. Do they fit? Maybe?

the team

I love, love it when a couple can work together. Not just know each other to a T so that all they need is a nod from each other and they immediately get in position to save the world. I mean, they’re humble enough to learn from each other. 

Lisbon/Jane: Lisbon/Jane

This is the part that I did like about Tobias and Tris in Divergent. Tris respects and admires Tobias. She learns a lot from him, and more or less, will take correction and guidance from him. Also, Tobias realizes that her Erudite tendencies are stronger than his and he comes to her to help solve problems. Not just his problems. But big problems.

the mentalist: the mentalist

Leading to another thing I liked about them, they were not all about the kissing and talking about each other. They set out to “save the world.” They were boyfriend/girlfriend, yes, but they got the important stuff done. They actually did save the world and the plot didn't get gummed up with too much romance. (If you’re thinking I need to reread it, you might be right.)

They worked together. Learned from each other. Leaned on each other.

I believe in you

How many times do you see an unequally skilled couple paired together? Or worse, one of them underestimates the other and therefore discourages the other from helping.

Small rant here. The first Spider-Man movies. The Toby McGuire ones. In all of them, the love interest, Mary Jane, tries to help during the fight (you know instead of standing there like a gawking, limp *coughs* Buttercup). Every time she does, she only makes everything worse. This always made me upset. WHAT KIND OF MESSAGE ARE THESE PEOPLE SENDING, HUH?

Ahem, back to not ranting.

When the couple actually believes in each other and believes enough that they actually rely on each other, it's very refreshing. And I mean really lean on each other. Like one of them is okay with the other of them being their only hope out of some situation, because they don't just believe, they KNOW the other of them will pull through.

Leverage: Leverage

(Hint- Hiccup and Astrid. They actually fit a lot of these categories.) 

This is another reason I like Tris and Tobias. They don't doubt each other. They know that if they’re separated Tris can take care of Tris without Tobias and Tobias can take care of Tobias without Tris. They know each other’s abilities and they don’t underestimate each other. Sometimes that causes problems when there's failure, but you know, they're willing to work through those problems. They had a lot of issues. But--
Real love

No, not that Disney-fied "true love."

I mean real love.

.: .

This is when the couple realizes what love actually is. Love is a choice. Love is a commitment. It's not some fuzzy feeling that could leave when someone other person catches your fancy or you realize that this relationship thing is harder than you thought.
I know I'm using Divergent a lot here (even though I did have initial problems with it). But I couldn't say this better:

I used to think that when people fell in love, they just landed where they landed, and they had no choice in the matter afterward. . . . I don’t just stay with him by default. . . .I stay with him because I choose to, every day that I wake up, every day that we fight or lie to each other or disappoint each other. I choose him over and over again, and he chooses me.--  Allegiant by Veronica Roth

(You could go pick up Allegiant and read pages 371-372; it’s my favorite scene of the whole trilogy.)

These two are not perfect. But you know what?

Nobody's perfect.

They were willing to accept that they were human. They tried to do better. They were "working on it". . . eh, and were permanently interrupted. That is reality though. You have to work on it. And you will never not be working on it. Humans are humans.
The biggest reason I love Tris and Tobias, is that even though they run into a lot of problems, they still choose to stay together. They choose to love. Because that's what love is. Divergent showed the reality of it so well. Love isn't something you just fall into and out of. Real love is a choice and commitment.

what love is not: what love is not

When a book gives me the sincere, unsugared truth about love, I just want to hug the characters and the author and thank them for it.

I see that love is something that a lot of people don't understand in reality nor totality. The world doesn't get it anymore. They've romanticize it too much. Perhaps that sounds like an oxymoron, that we've romanticized love. But if it does, then it's clearly true that we have.

tris/tobias: tris/tobias

Sometimes love is doing the hard stuff. Making the hard decisions that you're not going take the easy way out and find someone who doesn't have any problems. Sometimes it's making an even harder decision, to forgive, to be humble, and just forgive. To place your relationship above you and your pride.

I see that a lot of people have love backward. They think it's all about them and how they feel. When in truth, love is selfless.

If it's subtle I'm going to love every minute of it.

So how do you like your bookish romance served?


  1. Yes, I agree with everything, and you put it so perfectly. That is why I don't like most of the Y.A books or romances movies because they have all got it wrong. I love the friendship turned something more, the slow burn they feel more real, more tangible. Bless this post, and love that you used Jane and Lisbon, I am only on season two but I love that show. Treasure Planet is the best, and Calvin and Hobbes. You have exceptional taste.

    1. Thanks! I'm glad you like it.

      Jane and Lisbon! I love them so much! I was actually going to go into a lot of detail about them, because they fit a lot of these. But I was trying to keep book characters mostly. When I realized I didn't save any good pins for Tris and Tobias, the only other team couple I had was Jane and Lisbon. :D So I got to use some pics at least.

      It's a good show! Keep watching. ;)

  2. I love romance in books and movies because in the make-believe world you really can have friendship-to-love, or arch-enemies-to-love or team-couples. Like today I was watching Anne of Green Gables, and Anne and Gilbert are literally one of the most classic. I feel like in the real world though, it all just feels less romantic.

    The Life of Little Me

    1. You're right. Reality is a lot harsher, that's why I prefer books that don't sugar coat it, I guess? *shrugs*

      Anne and Gilbert! I almost gave them a spot in this post, but it was already too long. There were too many good couples to chose from. ;)


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  4. Ugh I agree with all of this. I love arch-enemy relationships, they're the cutest in my opinion.

    I wish real life relationships were as good as book relationships. *sigh*

    a little bit of sunshine

    (my other comment malfunctioned because my keyboard had a spaz, sorry about that)

    1. The arch enemies turned lovers is one of the BESTEST! It's just so funny the whole journey through. :)

  5. This is such a beautiful post, so true!!! I especially love what you said about waiting for the kiss...it makes it so much more powerful. I could write a whole book on that!

    1. Yes! Waiting for the kiss is just so much better. I think authors really cheat themselves out of a good suspense element when they don't use it to their advantage. You know, and put all us readers in agony. ;)


  6. I love this post just as much as that last one about your romance pet peeves. YES to everything you said! I was going to point certain things, but I honestly just agree with everything.

    Another good romance is Hale and Kat from Heist Society. There a team together, they fight a lot, they were friends, they don't know whether they're actually girlfriend-boyfriend... *sighs*

    1. Thanks! I'm glad you liked it. I worked on this post for a whole week just rambling on and on. Finally I was like, "Okay, I've got to sit down and make this coherent!" I'm glad it turned out well, because I was a little worried. XD

      I have never heard of them. Well, let me rephrase. I hear a lot about Heist Society, but I've never heard any specifics. They do sound interesting though. I always love a good team. They are so adorable! Especially when they don't know if they like each other. That part where they like "oh, wait we're older now and, your a girl (or boy depending on POV), um. . . don't know if I still want to argue with you on or actually think you're cute when you're angry. I can't believe I'm even thinking this!" The conflict and general mayhem is strangely satisfying. ;)

  7. I love this so much! I love characters who fall in love slowly they hardly notice what's happening--because it just feels so natural. Although that's not to say you CAN'T fall in love quickly, just that it doesn't often work that way. So yes, all these points you listed. I approve. And the Jedi death glare--I approve of that as well. :P

  8. I love this post ... see what I did there ... LOVE this post ... ahahaha ... well, I'm very tired, OK?

    The BFFs first is such a good trope! CORRIE AND JEM FOREVER! Gosh, also, when they make you wait for the kiss (totally what I'm doing, mwahaha, I'm seriously considering turning this duology into a trilogy just to fit their relationship arc ... everything revolves around them ...) Crown of Midnight, I'm just saying.

    I like your use of Calvin and Hobbes. (Best thing ever.)

    PS I'm going to reply to your email now!

    1. I'm glad you liked it! (You have no idea how many drafts I went through. And then the pic/gif finding.)

      I love the best friend trope (some tropes are good. . .). Though I will say that the arch enemies gets me to because it's FUNNY!

      I can't wait to read about Corrie and Jem! You keep talking about them. And I'm all for turning things into trilogies for relationships. Oddball the book was original going to be a stand alone. But the foursome plotted against me (or without me?) and it turned into a trilogy. And it was mostly Oddball's and Peril's faults. Those two are such a wreck. SOS!

      Calvin and Hobbes is the best! I think there's a Calvin and Hobbes for every moment in life. XD


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