Hello bookworms! Today I’m trying out a new meme that I was kindly introduced to through Twitter – Trope Tuesdays! Created by Lacy Literacy, the goal is to discuss one trope that you love, hate, or have any real thoughts on. Lately the one trope that I’ve been quite annoyed by is insta-love. So buckle up, and prepare for a ranty post my friends!
In all my years of reading, I’ve never been a fan of insta-love. And I’m willing to bet most people are the same way. But while others may be simply indifferent to the trope, it usually tends to rub me the wrong way. It does depend on the book and the execution, however lately I can’t seem to stand any of it!
I think my recent annoyance with insta-love started when I read Soulmated a month or two ago (click here to see my review). Not to discredit that book, because there were several aspects I enjoyed, but I think reading an entire book about characters that fall helplessly and deeply in love within *ehem* ONE WEEK just put me on an insta-love hating rampage. If a romance happens on a very fast time table, but still has chemistry and a fairly solid foundation, chances are I’ll be able to live with it. I won’t like it, and I might roll my eyes at the romantic parts, but I can still read and enjoy the rest of the story.
However, if a romance has zero build-up, a hyper unrealistic timeline, no chemistry, and/or no real reason for the characters to be in love, then my reading experience will be quite unpleasant. It distracts from the plot, and leaves me in a constant state of annoyance throughout the book. Let me list some examples of books with a romance that I a) despised, b) questioned what the author was thinking, or c) flat out laughed at because it was just so stupid:
- Soulmated – Lucky x Liam (already went over this one, but thought I would make it official and add it to the list)
- The Valiant – Fallon x Cai (this had potential at the beginning, but there was zero development and the whole thing felt fake)
- Shatter Me – Juliette x Adam (did anyone really like this?)
- Empress of a Thousand Skies – Alyosha x Kara (this book totally had me until literally the last 50 pages when this SUPER random romance was introduced!! Like no thank you I was fine without it)
- Passenger – Etta x Nicholas (okay, I actually really loved Passenger as a book, but wasn’t too keen on the romance. It needed a lot more time, and more of a reality check)
- Mask of Shadows – Sal x Elise (I really wanted to like this romance since it involves two LGBTQIAP+ characters, which is very important rep in the YA community, but it was way too sticky gooey with feelings and moved too quickly for my liking)
So there’s my list of insta-love romances that I didn’t care for. Don’t hate me if these are some of your faves, these are just my personal thoughts and opinions! For me, the ideal romance requires a lot of balanced chemistry, developed emotions and situations, and a LOT of time. I just don’t believe that people can really fall in love in a week! Or even in a month! Of course feelings arise, but in order to truly love, understand, and appreciate someone, you have to know them. Maybe better than you know yourself. So all these YAs that depict intense relationships within a short period of time always grate on me, because that’s not how life works! I don’t care if they characters are in the magical forest world of a high fantasy, or the urban streets of 21st century NYC – no teenager can or will love someone in a way that they feel compelled to give up their own dreams, their own needs, or even put themselves in harms way for someone else. Now, write me a book about a character that thinks they’re in love, and I’m on board. That happens all the time! But in YA, it seems like every single person should’ve found their life partner by the age of 17, within weeks of meeting them.
Wow, okay, I didn’t mean to get lost in a rant there. But I did warn you guys! Insta-love for me can easily ruin a book because if not enough time and effort is put into building a real relationship, I won’t believe the characters are in love. And all of their following interactions will inevitably annoy me, since it seems fake, in-genuine, and cringey.
Alright, I’m officially done ranting! I hope no one is offended by this post if they do like insta-love, I fully respect that! We all have different thoughts about love and life, these just happen to be some of mine.