Okay authors, I have a plea for you: can we STOP with the love triangle thing? Especially you young adult (YA) writers? I’ve begun reading a series by Julie Kagawa – The Iron Fey. They’re YA fantasy books, and I’ll be the first to admit I like these types of stories because YA books tend to be lighter and don’t really deal with “adult” issues that can kinda drag the reader down. Although, I will devour a Nick Hornby whenever I get the chance, and those are far from peppy.
My problem with Kagawa’s books, though, is that there’s this love triangle thing kind of winding up, and I’m kinda exhausted by it. I realize that I’m still in book one, but oh my freaking literary hell. The main character, Meghan (I like her name) is kinda starting to get caught between Puck – yes, the “real” Puck – and this winter fairy prince dude, Ash. The guys hate each other already, because they’re from two different fairy camps and there’s this history between the two – yet to be revealed. Insert teenage jealousies, and BAM! you have the recipe for every dang YA book I seem to come across.
I realize YA authors are pandering to their crowd a bit. Teen girls always want two guys fighting over them – until they realize that it’s not all it’s cracked up to be – and come on let’s face it, the formula works:
Slightly awkward plain Jane girl has childhood friend who has always been there at her side. She starts to notice that he’s not the same little boy she grew up with, he’s actually kinda hot, but she doesn’t feel that way about him – that would be like dating her brother. Enter dark, brooding stranger…
*PAUSE* Girls, do you know what a dark, brooding stranger means in real life? Either 1) a sadist intent on hurting/stalking/kidnapping you, or 2) a freaking mental case who is so high maintenance that you don’t even want to deal with him because sadly he’s more of a girl than you are.
Anyway, that’s the formula, and I’m sorry, but as a reader, I think I’d like to see something different. I realize that’s some good conflict in that there love triangle, and props to those who have done it in the past. I mean, let’s face it: male territorial shenanigans are fun to write and totally realistic, but holy guacamole!! Can we find something else to stir things up.
We have Edward vs. Jacob; Jace vs. Simon; now Puck vs. Ash. Will it NEVER end?!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m really enjoying Kagawa’s books; I kind of imagine them as Anime actually because there’s this talking cat, and all this fantasy stuff swirling around. I also like that there are curse words in the books, because teenagers have horrible language most of the time. The characters haven’t really dealt with “adult” issues yet, mainly just stuff that can be roughly translated to issues with authority, but they’re entertaining. I do think it’s time to pick up a Hornby book or similar though, just for a change of pace. AND, I’m not going to do the best-friend-who-wants-more-versus-the-hot-stranger-fighting-over-the-normal-girl thing in any of my stories.