Love in Fiction

I'm not much of a genre reader. Any sort of plot works for me, as long as it's interesting, not too disgusting or tragic, and the character development is good. I do stay away from the romance genre most of the time unless I know the book is clean, because if these characters with whom I've begun to bond turn out to be immoral, I'll be disappointed in them.

Good stories of any genre may have romances that are compelling and beautiful and sweet. The Book Examiner posted, some time back, on "The 5 Most Annoying Literary Romances ... and the 5 Most Romantic Ones." With judgment reserved on Sayers' pair, whose stories I haven't read but will happily search the library for, her picks for both seem just about right to me. Does anyone really like Tess of the d'Urbervilles? I hated that book.

I still haven't brought myself to read Wuthering Heights either, though in the name of being well-read it may need to be gritted through eventually. Maybe someday I'll put myself in a padded cell for a couple of weeks and read that book and select works of Kafka, Steinbeck and Hemingway. Then I'll have paid my debt to tragic literature, though it might take electro-shock therapy to cleanse my mind enough to live a normal life thereafter.

I have a couple nominations of my own for the next two Most Romantic Couples:

Ender Wiggin and Novinha from Orson Scott Card's Speaker for the Dead. "For he loved her, as you can only love someone who is an echo of yourself at your time of deepest sorrow." That pretty much says it all. That book is so beautiful it makes me cry.

Miri Larendaughter and Peder Doterson from Shannon Hale's Princess Academy. I read the spring holiday scene a couple of nights ago and it made me feel absolutely gooey. Princess Academy is a middle-reader book and the young couple don't even kiss on the lips, but it is ever so sweet.

Whom would you nominate?


  1. Okay, I have a stack of Sayers' mysteries with your name on them!

    Lord Peter and Harriet Vane definitely would be near the top of my list, for all they are a very practical and un-mushy couple...which you have to be when you meet so often at murder scenes, I suppose.

    Perhaps Anne and Gilbert would make the list?

    I definitely agree about Tess and also Heathcliff and Cathy...ugh!

  2. Right on, Jana! I totally want to read those. Want to bring them to Writer's Group? :D

    Anne and Gilbert are wonderful--they definitely belong on the list. Good call.


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