Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Love triangles

I have been reading a lot of books featuring love triangles recently. Especially young adult books.

When love triangles are good I really enjoy them, but if done wrong they can make me drop a book faster than anything else. However, what they never fail to do to is extract strong feelings from me.

Lately, some of the biggest selling series involve love triangles, but if the book doesn't end up the way you hoped, you can get disappointed.

A small sample of examples (YA):

1. Twilight - Stephenie Meyer
2. House of night - P C Cast
3. Blue Bloods - Melissa De La Cruz
4. Vampire Academy - Richelle Mead
5. Vampire Diaries - L J Smith
6. Darkest Powers - Kelley Armstrong
7. Mortal Instruments - Cassandra Clare

Possible love triangle scenarios:

1. The 'other' guy pines (very rare)
2. The 'other' guy finds someone else, no hard feelings (common)
3. The 'other' guy realizes that he never really loved her anyway but someone else (e.g. Twilight)
4.  The 'other' guy realizes he can live with it because he didn't love her enough.
5. The 'other' guy gets villianized.

I find it hard to say what works without a context but arguably my favorite scenario is when the the main character goes out with (loves) one guy but they break apart for a good reason. Then the main realizes how great the other guy was, or realizes the other guy loves her.

I don't like when the main character chooses one guy because of 'true love' instead of how the guy treats her and those around them. I also don't like when the author makes the love triangle the entire story, or when the author patches the situation quickly at the end (it's a series, use your time wisely).

My current favorite series with a love triangle:

  • Carolyn Crane - The Disillusionist Trilogy

Where do you stand on love triangles... love or hate?
  • Which books did you love and which did you hate? 
  • What type of scenarios do you hate vs. love? 

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