Friday, September 30, 2016

Super Picky About Romance Part 2-- The Exceptions and The Rules

So I did a post last week about YA Romance and how I'm super picky about it.  Basically I talked about how I need the romance to give me some perfect, unexplainable feeling or I don't like it very much.

But I also said that all of my dislikes have exceptions.... so today I'm going to share with you books that fall into:

the RULE category-- meaning they showcase exactly what I don't like in romance
the EXCEPTION category-- which are books that do the thing the RULE does, but somehow it works for me

Category: Boy Crazy

The Exception-- The Boyfriend List by E. Lockhart
  • Ruby Oliver is definitely boy crazy and it gets her into a lot of trouble at times... but the book has a fun feel to it, so it works.
The Rule-- Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige
  • I had to DNF this one in big part thanks to Snow having a crush on EVERY male she comes into contact with.  Just no.

Category: Uncomfortable Romance

The Exception-- The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
  • So some inappropriate things go on with Lennie and her dead sister's boyfriend Toby.  Which is alarming, but ultimately it was part of her grief process, so I could handle it.
The Rule-- Miss Peregrine's School for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
  • Jacob goes to this island which is stuck in a time-loop and there's a girl there that is his age, but also was his grandfather's girlfriend before the time-loop started.  There's just something about hooking up with your grandfather's ex that makes me feel icky.

Category: Instalove

The Exception-- Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry
  • I loved Noah and Echo and YES it was a little bit Instalove, but they had CHEMISTRY.
The Rule-- Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
  • Oh gosh, this relationship.  Sorry to all you Twi-hards, but I just can't with the "you are exactly my brand of heroin" crap.

Category: Stuck Together

The Exception-- From What I Remember by Stacy Kramer & Val Thomas
  • Kylie and Max get stuck in Mexico on high school graduation day, and I thought they were adorably cute together.  Their adventure didn't feel super forced and the romance developed without having to rely on them starting out as MORTAL enemies.
The Rule-- Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill
  • Jason and Julia are opposites that get stuck together as partners during a class trip to London.  It's the case of "the rule breaker" and "the rule follower" and I sort of liked the book.  But the romance wasn't the part that I liked.

Category: Inappropriate Love

The Exception-- Love and Other Perishable Items by Laura Buzo
  • Amelia is 15 and Chris is 21.  That is a no-go for me.  BUT guys, this goes to show the power of Laura Buzo's writing, because by the end of the book I actually liked this couple.
The Rule-- You Against Me by Jenny Downham
  • The romance in this book is between the brother of a girl who was raped and her rapist's sister.  That is just ick for me.

Category: Immaturity

The Exception-- Winger by Andrew Smith
  • Ryan Dean West is SO immature and Annie should have never given him any time of day.  BUT she did and he's awesome and just-- YAY!!
The Rule-- Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
  • Lily.  Oh jeez Lily.  I liked Dash, but Lily was so immature she was practically non-functional.  So no, I did not like this romance.

Category: Instalove

The Exception-- Mara Dyer series by Michelle Hodkin
  • Maybe not a true exception because these 2 did get on my nerves at times.  Maybe I just have a thing for hot dudes with accents.  Whatever the reason, I didn't HATE their Instalove as much as I normally do.
The Rule-- Shadowlands series by Kate Brian
  • The first book in this series is THRILLING and awesome... but then Tristan and Rory happen.  BLAH.  They're dropping the "soulmate" bomb after like a day and it's very hard for me to work with that.

Category: Pedestal Love

The Exception-- Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
  • I felt like Isla put Josh up on a pedestal because his life was more mapped out and she was such a romantic that she expected things from him without KNOWING who he really was.  But it was a very cute romance and I didn't hate them as a couple.  I just wished Isla didn't put herself down so much because she saw Josh as being so high.
The Rule-- Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour
  • I really liked this book... I just really DIDN'T like the romance.  Emi put Ava on a pedestal and expected her to live up to that pedestal and it pissed me off because Ava didn't ask for that!!

Category: Siblings Liking the Same Person

The Exception-- Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver
  • Sisters Dara and Nick both have a thing for the neighbor-boy Parker.  It wasn't icky because, well, I don't know.... the situation??  Because Josh was totally love-able??  I don't know, but it didn't irk me at all.
The Rule-- Invincible Summer by Hannah Moskowitz
  • This book = EWWW.  2 brothers are knowingly sleeping with the same girl and the whole thing just felt creepy and ICKY.

Category: Hate to Love

The Exception-- 52 Reasons to Hate My Father by Jessica Brody
  • So Lexi's dad sends one of his interns to "babysit" her while she's out doing her 52 jobs.  Of course, she hates his guts... he's a brown-noser and totally stuck up!!  But he changes and feelings change and I didn't hate it.
The Rule-- Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout
  • I apologize up-front about this one.  I know a lot of you like this series..... but ughhh.  I had to DNF because it was giving me Twilight-vibes.  Katy hated Daemon at first meeting, and he was such a jerk.... but also super interested in her and wanting to save her all the time.  I hate that stuff!!  I just know they were going to get it on and it was just a giant NO for me.

Category: Geeky/Cute

The Exception-- Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
  • I loved the trope of the popular girl falling for the Geeky/Cute boy (Kent forever!!) in this book.  LOVED it!!
The Rule-- Anatomy of a Misfit by Andrea Portes
  • The popular girl falling for the Geeky/Cute boy in this book didn't go as well.  There was a love triangle and the Geeky/Cute boy had problems (which is fine, but his problems sort of defined him).  

Category: Bad Boy

The Exception-- The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler
  • Jude is forbidden from the Vargas brothers by her older sisters, but after they all leave the house, she starts spending time with bad-boy Emilio Vargas.  Emilio really wasn't a bad-boy.  He just liked motorcycles.  And this book was about so much more than a romance.
The Rule-- My Secret to Tell by Natalie D. Richards
  • Emmie loves Deacon, but he's her best friend's brother and he's a bad boy man-whore.  Emmie is a SUPER good girl, so she doesn't dare act on these feelings until Deacon looks super guilty for attempted murder... because there's nothing more attractive than a guy who probably tried to kill his dad.  This was the "forbidden bad boy" trope done bad.

So Let's Talk:
Do you have THINGS in romance that bug you, but yet you find yourself having some exceptions from the dislike?  What are some of your EXCEPTIONS and what are some of your RULES??

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  1. I hate insta-love. HATE! But Twilight is my exception lol. I do wonder how I would feel reading it for the first time today and not 10(?) years ago. My opinion might be different now. I really loved Love and Other Perishable Things even though it could've been icky. I loved a lot of the same books you did!

    1. I forgive you for loving Twilight :) No seriously, I know that book was a gateway for a lot of people to get into YA, so I respect it for that. And wasn't Love and Other Perishable Items just crazy how it could make you like such an inappropriate couple?? It blew my mind!

  2. I love this post!! You set it up perfectly!! I mean I hate insta-love but I agree in some books it just doesn't bother me as much. Immaturity bothers me too in books. Again love this post :)

    1. Thanks!! Yeah I hate immaturity too... it's one of the teen things that I just can't deal with (usually... obviously I have exceptions).

  3. YES! I felt the EXACT same way about Ms. Peregrine's! I feel like the ageless boy or girl is this really weird YA fantasy trope and it gives me the willies!

    1. It IS weird.... although I kind of want to see the movie??? Not sure why, probably bc Tim Burton!

  4. What a FUN POST!!! You may have to do more similar to this. I didn't care for Miss Peregrine's so I can understand you there. Also, I have heard ZERO people say they liked Stealing Snow. What a shame because it sounds good. :(

    1. I'm glad I wasn't the only one to not like Stealing Snow. Let me know if you read it... I'd like to see what you think!

  5. Fun post - I'm not sure I could come up with so many examples. There are definitely things that will bother me in one book and yet I'll be a-ok with it in another book. I guess it comes down to the author and their writing. Some can pull things off well, while others just...can't. haha


    1. EXACTLY!! I'll be hard-core complaining about something in one book, and then another will do it and I'll be completely fine with it. It's SO hard to describe what the difference is!!

  6. THIS IS THE BEST POST EVER. Omg, I'd love to do sg like this, it looks so much fun! Before I Fall is one of the best contemporaries I've ever read - and the romance was just adorable and ultimetaly heartbreaking. Haha, I actually loved the Lux series - it definitely had it's highs and lows, but it was such an entertaining series, imo. Mara Dyer, I really didn't enjoy - I always feel like the odd one out because most people LOVED it. Vanishing Girls was so well-written and emotional.. I honestly didn't mind at all the sisters liking the same guy, although that trope does irk me too. I didn't like either one of the main characters in Dash & Lily's Book of Dares - I was so disappointed when Lily didn't develop one bit by the end. The romance in Miss Peregrine's was THE WORST - so cringe-worthy and icky ugh.
    Amazing post!
    Veronika @ The Regal Critiques

    1. You should totally do a post like this!! I'd love to read it!! And OMG why with the grandfather's girlfriend?? I just couldn't get over that fact. I hope they change that up for the movie!!

      I feel like the odd one out with the Lux series. I wanted to like it so bad!!

  7. Can I just say I agree with you so much on Obsidian!! I know that pretty much everyone loves the romance but I couldn't stand it! I agree with Twilight too. I reread the first book recently and... it wasn't as good as I remembered. Great post!

    Tracy @ Cornerfolds

    1. Those 2 books were so similar that I found it alarming. I don't get the appeal, but to each his own :)

  8. This is such a fantastic post! I find that there are lots of tropes that I typically really hate, but then an author does it really well and makes me like the book anyway. Instalove is one of those--it usually ruins a book for me, but every once in a while, I find myself sucked into the story anyway. That's the sign of a great writer!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    1. Oh, and I was totally with you on Daemon and the first Lux book--it did get better in later books, but I was really not a fan of the first one.

    2. I've heard that the series does get better, which thank goodness!! But I still can't get myself to get through the first one. And I agree, it makes me feel like a crazy person when an author gets me to like a trope that I normally can't stand!

  9. Ever since seeing its cover reveal and reading the synopsis, I was curious about Stealing Snow but if the lead is boy crazy for every dude she meets?! Yeah, that is a big annoyance of mine in books or TV shows. *sigh* Way to depict commitment.

    Fun post, Michelle! :)

    1. Thanks!! I really didn't like Stealing Snow and haven't seen many people that have unfortunately :(

  10. What a great post! I never really thought of this in terms like that. I have rules of things I don't like in romance too. I don't like instalove (althought I'm cool with it in paranormal because if I can believe in whatever they're trying to sell me I can believe in love at first sight for supernatural creatures and mates and all that), love triangles and pregnancy stories.
    I like how you put exceptions as well as the rule.
    But you've got me nervous about Stealing Snow. I'm a quarter into it so far! I hope the romance works better for me than it did for you!

    1. I could see being able to accept things better in paranormal books. I don't read a ton of them, so I don't know if I would be that way. Only that I wasn't in Obsidian. Pregnancy is a hard NO for me as well!! I do hope you like Stealing Snow better than I did :(

  11. Vanishing Girls was SO annoying. I could never get with someone my sister's been with it, strictly. lolz. I DID enjoy the book, though, just because I love Lauren Oliver's writing. And I LOOOVE Before I Fall!! I usually hate the geeky guys, too. Ha. I love how you've described the bad boy in Sarah Ockler's book. I'm not sure if I've ever read of a fab bad boy, but I'll def check him out!

    1. Lauren Oliver's writing is spectacular. I really connect with it. Before I Fall was my fave of hers too. God it was SO GOOD!!