Happy Valentine's Day, friends! Here's a true Valentine's story from my life: One year in high school, some friends and I were in a coffee shop. I thought my friend Beverly was standing next to me because I caught a flash of her blue coat, so when I noticed some paper hearts decorating the walls, I turned, wiggled my eyebrows suggestively, and said, "It's almost Valentine's Day". Turns out it was a middle aged man. Oops. Now that you've lived through my shame of twenty years past, it's time for the weekly love-themed link up. Today we're posting TTT lists with a Valentine's theme, so I'll be writing about my favourite and least favourite literary couples. I decided to go with books that I read within the last few years rather than all-time favourites, because as much as I love Lizzie and Darcy, it may be time to give some other couples a chance in the spotlight.
1. Ove and Sonja in A Man Called Ove: Ove is the very definition of a curmudgeon, but Sonja loves him anyway. I loved this portrait of love over a lifetime, even and especially through difficult circumstances.
2. Rebecca and Nicholas from The Royal We: This book was a surprise hit for me because the characters were goofy and real. Yes, the idea of an average American girl capturing the heart of prince seemed far-fetched, but the book was full of adorable and funny moments, and in the end I really loved Nick and Bex.
3. Marko and Alana from the Saga series: This story is kind of Romeo and Juliet set in space. What I love about Marko and Alana is that they flawed characters, but they are feisty and committed and passionate. Also, she has wings and he has horns, so that's pretty cool. :)
4. Leah and Jefferson in The Gold Seer series: This series plays with the old trope of the devoted guy who is in love with his unsuspecting best friend; however, Jefferson is kind and strong, and their romance develops as a quiet love story rather than fireworks and magic. I liked that they really respect and care about each other, both as friends and later as more than friends.
5. Beatrice and Hugh in The Summer Before The War: Maybe I just love period romances, but I enjoyed watching this one develop, especially as it wasn't the whole focus of the book. It was nice watching Hugh's eyes gradually open and the way that World War I showed them what was qualities were truly important in a partner and what wasn't actually such a big deal.
6. Lara Jean and Peter in P.S. I Still Love You: This series is candy to me. I laugh a lot and I get warm fuzzies, and I don't care if high school romances usually don't last. I love these two and I adore Lara Jean's family too.
Now I'll move on to a few couples that I just didn't like:
7. Elena and Nino in the Neapolitan series: Don't get me wrong; I really enjoyed this series and found it captivating, but so many times I just wanted to shake Elena and say, "He's a tool! Walk away from him!! Yes, you had a crush on him as an adolescent, but it's time to move on."
8. Elizabeth Woodville and Edward IV in The White Queen: There was way too much insta-love in this historical novel.
9. Isabelle and Gaetan in The Nightingale: I loved this book, but the romance element annoyed me. I was thankful that it was less prominent than it seemed in the beginning, but the whole, "I've just met you in wartime and now I'm in love" aspect rubbed me the wrong way. Isabelle was a strong character on her own. She didn't need to be following a boy.
10. Pretty much every couple in The Mists of Avalon: I mean, half of them were related to each other, or cheating on each other, and if not, there was probably some kind of witchcraft involved.