Blogger Confession: I DESPISE Love Triangles….
Hi y’all! I am not usually down with highlighting negative things here on Geeky Bloggers Book Blog but today I am going to talk about something that I despise: LOVE TRIANGLES. I am coming out as a love triangle protester and I’m not ashamed to admit it.
Since I mentioned that I would be doing a post today–I have found two other people who have written up their views on Love Triangles recently: Smexy Books and The Book Nympho. These are two excellent articles that you need to go forth and read!
I am just going to jump right in and give you my 4 MAIN reasons for despising love triangles: (For the sake of this article I am talking about triangles that last the whole book or more if it is a series. I am not talking about a girl who is trying internet dating and goes out on a couple of dates with a couple of guys then makes a decision. I am talking about the “trying to figure out how I can keep them both in my life in some capacity so I don’t lose” kind of triangle. The one that reeks of selfishness.)
- Someone always loses and usually it is the good guy! I will admit that in the books that I have read with love triangles, the guys I root for always end up losing. They are the ones that listened to the girl, were there for her, and often acted as filler for when the bad boy was off for whatever reason (brooding, doing what was best for her, breaking it off, blowing off some steam). These guys caused very little angst for the leading lady and always have my heart. They usually end up with some consolation prize and always end up still being there for the leading lady as a friend. It drives me nuts! Biggest Offender: YA/New Adult
- Forced Conflict: Is it me or is the triangle sometimes introduced just to bring more conflict into the story? To me, this just seems rather forced. It is almost like the author is saying that the book has to be so many pages long and I just can’t do that with the main storyline. There are many triangles that never even needed to be triangles to have all the characters in there. In fact, there are some cases that the story probably would have been better with a straight friendship with one of the guys and a love match with the other. Biggest Offender: Cozy Mysteries.
- Interrupts/Distracts from main storyline: Nothing bugs me more than just when the action revs it up a notch the leading lady stops to ponder her romance situation with two guys: Which one should I call, whose side should I pick, whose advice should I follow? (very distraught Southern Belle of you my dear). I seriously have yelled at books where this has happened. I also don’t like the constant bickering between the two guys especially during combat, leading up to combat, or not recognizing when the other has a good idea. I almost want to tell them that neither of you has the balls to walk away so neither of you is better than the other. It always takes me out of the main story and it is always hard for me to get back into my reading groove. Biggest offender: Urban Fantasy.
- Reeks of falsehood: Sorry but 9 out of 10 times the triangle doesn’t ring true. I always feel like 1 out of the 3 people would put a stop to it way before it reaches a conclusion. I can buy that one person is having a hard time making a decision but all 3? That just isn’t even remotely believable. Either that or you have written 3 disturbingly wishy/washy characters that can’t make their minds up. If that is the case, then those aren’t the type of characters that I would be very good at rooting for anyway. Biggest Offender: Any genre that chooses to have a long running triangle.
There are several other smaller reasons that I don’t like love triangles but the 4 mentioned above are my biggest pet peeves with them.
Places I have found love triangles and what I think about it:
- YA/New Adult: huge in this genre. Oddly enough though this is the one genre I would buy it in. You don’t really know what you want/how you feel/where you are going at these ages. I know to avoid this genre because of the triangles but I do understand that age plays a role in them being used.
- UF: becoming pretty darn common. This is one where I have to be really, really, really careful and rely on my friends to tell which series to avoid due to triangles. Depending on the story, I can see one going on for a short time (not more than a book and a half) but outside of that I lose all respect for everyone involved. Especially if you are trying to sell me on how strong, independent, and worthy of leadership your lead character is supposed to be. I need to know that he/she can make decisions, work through those decisions, and even have the gumption to ditch those decisions if they aren’t working out. What I don’t like is the constant maybe/maybe not, let me drag them a long until I am sure, or even worse the I will wait till one of them makes the decision for me scenario.
- Cozy Mysteries: becoming more common. I am not even really sure why triangles are now popping up in the genre but I have read 2 cozies lately that have had a triangle. Why? Is there not enough conflict in your story without them? I mean trying to track down a killer while not being trained and having a full-time job isn’t conflict enough? Since most of the leading ladies are in their 30s or 40s and in the dating pool, I can tell you from experience dating one man is conflict enough. Dating is tough enough in your 30s and 40s that an extra triangle situation is usually uncalled for. I just don’t see a need for it and more often than not has forced me to mark down what I thought of the book because it is distracting.
- Mystery/Thriller/Horror: not usually an issue. I haven’t noticed many (if any) triangles in these genres but I have noticed more romance. As long as the characters personal issues don’t interfere with the main storyline then I am ok with it. I only mind when it seems their personal lives are more important than the case (Mystery/Thrillers) or the monster (Horror).
- Main Stream Romance: not usually an issue BUT I did recently read a book where there was a triangle in the beginning of the romance. I stopped reading it. No way would I buy a triangle in an Adult Romance book. I read romance for the HEA. I do not read it so some guy gets screwed in the end by the girl choosing another guy. I will lead a revolution if romance decides to make this a common occurrence. Luckily I have only ran into one of these types of books lately and I totally hope it was a fluke.
- Erotica: I don’t read a lot in this genre so I am not knowledgeable enough to know. I have heard it is quite common place but just like YA it might be part of the appeal. Except I think the difference is maybe all 3 end up together? Again, I maybe read 12 erotica classified stories a year and tend to pick the more vanilla (1 guy, 1 girl) type of stories.
So love triangles–do you love them or hate them? I know they must still be pretty popular since they seem to be more prevalent than a few years ago. I guess I am just to much of a sap and would prefer not to read about someone getting their heartbroken or being someone’s second choice.