Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Top Ten Things I Like/Dislike in Romances

Here we go, my second Top Ten Tuesday! You can find my first one, a list of Fictional books I can't believe I haven't read yet, here. You can read more about Top Ten Tuesday here at The Broke and the Bookish.

This week's topic is "things you like/dislike in romance." I'm doing five I like, four I don't. Here they are:

Things I like:

1. Slow-burning  - Is there anything more romantic than a relationship that takes it time? Is there anything sweeter than watching the hero and heroine go from strangers, to friends, to a little bit more than friends, to a little bit more than that . . . all the way to true love?

2. Childhood friends - I don't know if everyone will agree with me on this one, I know it's become a bit cliche. But there's just something so wonderfully sweet about the relationship between two people who have known each other their whole lives. I love the idea that two people can know each other so incredibly well because they've shared secrets, memories, and friends since they were very young.

3. They both are loyal to the end - Yep, this one's definitely cliche. But if there's anything I can't stand, it's a character who's flaky about his priorities. If he or she is the one, then he or she is The One! Don't waffle about it, don't be a flake and lead on two different people at the same time. Just pick one, love them forever, and don't ever, ever, betray their trust or their love.

4. Characters have their priorities straight - Let's see, should I save the world from impending doom or dream about how hot my crush is? Um, duh! Save the world! I love a good romance that doesn't take center stage, and doesn't take over the main plot line. If two people are really in love, then great. I'd love to see some of that slow-burning romance I mentioned in my first point (in fact, it's books like these that often have the best slow-burn squee moments!). But if I'm going to like them as characters, they'd better spend more time worrying about Impending Doom than they do about whether or not their crush likes them back.

5. They are willing to do anything for each other, but don't spend a lot of time talking about it - Back to the slow-burn. I guess most of these points all go back to this, but I really really love subtle romance. I love it when it's light-handed and sweet, when characters spend most of the time poking fun at each other, insulting each other, or even pretend to hate each other, but at the end of the day they each know they would both go to the ends of the earth for the other person.

Things I don't like:

1. Insta-love - What's betting this is on almost every Top Ten list this week? Everybody hates insta-love! Well, probably not everybody. I suppose there must be a group out there who like it, otherwise they would stop publishing it. But I for one detest insta-love. So sure, he's cute and he has an accent. Maybe he's got magic powers, I don't care. He might be an awesome person (and the way these stories go, he probably is), but you don't know that, do you? You don't know that because you only met him last week! Any time a character falls for someone after knowing them less than, say, a couple of months, I lose any respect I had for their intelligence.

2. Love triangles - I kind of touched on this with #3 in the first list, but I had to reiterate this second pet peeve of mine. Love triangles are proof that the main character is not worth either of the people she's considering being with. If two people offer you their love, then you pick one and move on. You don't keep stringing them along because you're paralyzed with indecision. That's just plain mean, and shows that neither of them is really your "true love," because if he were you wouldn't spend the whole time vascilating between him and the other guy!

3. When the childhood best friend is really obviously the One, but the protagonists spends the entire book looking everywhere and anywhere else for true love - Yeah, I love stories where childhood friends fall in love. I know this looks like I'm rescinding that statement, but I'm not. I just don't like childhood friends stories where one of the main characters spends the whole time running in circles looking for love away from her best friend when I, the reader, am just holding my head and moaning "figure it out already!"

4. On-again-off-again - Be one or the other. Just pick and be done with it. If you're really waffling that much, then how on earth are you planning on spending the rest of your lives together?

And there you have it, some of my favorite and least favorite components of romance. What are yours? Let me know in the comments section below!


  1. No.5 I agree with you TOTALLY *high five*!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE when couples bicker! Like they started as annoying to each other, but slowly started understanding their attraction, all the while being sarcastic to each other and having small, not-so serious fights!
    I hate when couples always say "I would kill for you..I want to stay with you forever..You're my soul, my life..I can't live without you" blah blah blah..If they really understand one another..I don't think there's any need to say these words out loud!
    I don't get how some can be so serious ALL the time, it should be more like friendship..bickering, goofing off and just having fun!
    I don't know about childhood friends, but yeah I agree, friends in general..It's kinda realistic and cool!
    I don't like love triangles, because I always feel so bad for the "other" guy! Poor guy, he didn't do anything to deserve this and it's only because the chick can't decide which cute dude is cuter! Also, you shouldn't be like Jacob from Twilight who doesn't get it into his head that for the millionth time that she doesn't want him..It's pathetic..UGH
    Great post! I love your points!

    Eclectic Introspections @ Flickering Lights

    1. *high fives back* Let's hear it for the bickering! :D I agree with you that if they really need to say those mushy things so often it gets really annoying. They should focus on actually having fun together, instead of on talking about how much they love each other.
      Haha, I haven't read Twilight but I think that's probably the most infamous love triangle of all, thanks to the YouTube wars. I have to say, Jacob seems really . . . needy from what I've heard about him. Not like my kind of hero at all.

  2. I love this list!! I was thinking a lot of the same things when I was writing mine! I totally agree with you in that I need characters who have good heads on their shoulders and have their priorities in line. nothing is worse than watching them spin all out of whack. god actually all of your likes are really amazing and well thought out. I completely agree! :)

    1. Aw, thanks Stardust Words! Do you have a link to your Top Ten list? I'd love to check it out!

  3. I definitely think insta-love is on everyone's lists this week. :P It's so annoying! And it seems to be so prevalent in YA books, sadly.

    1. Yeah, it is most definitely annoying. Now there's a YA trend I wish would just go away.

  4. Nice list of turn ons and turn offs for romance in novels. Heres my link for my TTT post this week: http://captivatedreader.blogspot.com/2015/02/top-ten-tuesday-top-ten-things-i.html

  5. I love a good long and slow burning romance because I find those to be the most realistic! I also really like it when friendship turns into love, those end up usually being so cute! That aside, I also really hate instalove. It's one of the greatest book turn offs for me, and will lower my opinion on the book by far. Love triangles are weird for me. I don't like them when they are included for the sake of being included, or make a character look weak. But if they are executed well, it makes me happy and I can enjoy them!

    1. Yeah, instalove is probably the worst. It's just so aggravating! I usually start out liking a love triangle in a book/series, but then wind up gritting my teeth and pulling my hair out when it consumes the main plot.


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