Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Love Story

I'm as bad as any girl about getting all giggly about a good romantic sub-plot. Every awesome novel about a girl does NOT have to have a gorgeous guy tagging along, but it helps :)

Lately, however, I've noticed a disturbing trend in the books I've picked up. The guy that the main character is drawn to is bad. Not bad as in "on opposing sides of the war" bad, (that's kinda fun, actually) but bad as in lies, manipulates, and ignores her. And in most cases, the seemingly intelligent MC knows this, but "loves" him anyway.

Now, in all fairness, these are usually the beginnings of a series, and I'm confident that by the last book, jerk-boy will turn over a new leaf, realize what he has, and deserve her. My problem is that, in real life, that rarely happens. You're more likely to end up with a jerk who doesn't respect you. Please don't get me wrong. I know people can change, and I know girls don't really fall for someone because they act like the butt-head turned nice guy in the novel they are currently reading. But I am worried that if we keep making this behavior look attractive, or even "normal," more and more girls will start to believe that's the way it's supposed to be.

So, am I overreacting? What if the love interest from your favorite novel was real? Would you date him, or let your daughter? I know the bad boy plot is here to stay, but should we really be okay with our heroines following them blindly because "they'll change" eventually?  Thoughts please.


  1. This is one of many reasons I have always steered clear of reading romance novels. There are enough downers in the world without throwing in a character from a book who is typically disrespectful and conceited. Readers always like to see someone come over from the darkside but what about the path of destruction they left behind?

  2. ack. i'm not a big romance fan- in general. but i prefer stories where the romantic interest is unexpected. i get really annoyed by the glorification of character's physical attributes at the expense of their personalities. i think that author's need to use their conscientious (i can NEVER spell that word) when writing. but i think that much can be learned from character fallibility. i guess it comes down to the depth of the character and what the novel as a whole is saying. i guess i'd have to decide story by story whether i thought the message was one i'd support. but honestly, most of the love interests in YA annoy the heck out of me. can't the shy nerd guy get any love? how about the homely gal? *sigh*

  3. Thanks ladies. And Vic, I agree. we all need love, not just the pretty people. :)