Love Triangles... Love Them or Leave Them

January 17, 2021

love triangles

As bloggers, we get contacted by authors, big and small, traditionally published or independent, to review their books. Most of us have a set of criteria that a potential read has to fit. Let's be real... there are just some books we have no intention of ever reading. So why bother put yourself through something that you're only going to review poorly?

That's how I feel about Love Triangles. I don't like 'em. If I'm warned in advance, I stay away. It's not to say that I haven't read and loved stories that centered around a love triangle. Take Black Swan Affair by K.L. Kreig. I gave it five whole stars!! And why? Because the story was phenomenally written. However, I look at it as an aberration rather than the status quo.

I know there are a ton of people who will disagree with my take on the trope. They love it and can't understand why I don't. They believe that I'm missing out. Well, the following are my reasons for giving this trope a pass:

HITS

MISSES

* the angst. If you're a fan of emotional, heart-jerking stories, then these books are for you. * the angst. I deal with enough in real life. I don't need my heart to be pulled in so many different directions.
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* the volume. If you feel like the more the merrier, then these books are for you. * the volume. I'm finding that as I get older, I'm becoming more traditional in my views of relationships. I know, I can't believe it either. But I like the 1:1 ratio in a relationship. No cheating or polyamorous entanglements.
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* the characters. Sometimes it's the journey that makes it work. Watching the protagonist maneuver their way to find love with one or both people is a huge part of what makes the story work. * the characters. Most of the time it's the relationship between the characters that ruins it for me. What if the heroine/hero has to choose between brothers/sisters? Or best friends? It makes me lose all respect for the protagonist for stringing them along.
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* the feels. This leads back to the angst. All those emotions, feeling along with the protagonist, choosing your victor, and then finding out if you're right. * the boom. There are times when it is super easy to pick the person you want the protagonist to be with. Why? Because the author makes one of the contenders a monster. They'll be abusive or negligent or entertaining others. Can we call a clichΓ© a clichΓ©?
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* time spent. When done well, the tension isn't dragged out, the heroine/hero makes their choice intelligently and emotionally, and the rest is a happily ever after. * time spent. Then there's the time spent dragging the story out, so I don't even care who they choose. Especially if they spend time going from one person to the other.
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I can't think of another 'hit' Pet peeve... when one of the contenders dies. So it's not a matter of choice anymore, it's a matter of convenience. And yes, I know how bad that sounds. But how can you believe in your relationship if the only way you 'won' your partner is because your rival died, clearing the way for you? How can I believe in it?
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I still can't think of another 'hit' There is no reason for the love triangle. The story would have gone on its merry way without it. So here you've introduced a triangle to what? Liven up your story? And it's all bullocks because if your plot increases in value because of the triangle... fine. But when there is no plot without the triangle or vice versa... I'll pass.

I'm sure there a still more reasons for why I don't like love triangles, but honestly, thinking about them is making me remember all of the bad ones I've read and I'd rather not.

One of my 2021 bookish resolutions was to be more open with my fellow readers and bloggers. To open up more about my thoughts and opinions. To post more about my likes, dislikes, loves and favorites. So here's post one and I hope you like it!

5 comments

  1. I have conflicting feelings about them. Some of them, I absolutely LOVE! Heartbreak Warfare by Kate Stewart is an example of a beautifully executed love triangle in my opinion and one of the best I've ever read. The reason for the triangle makes sense. It is an actual choice. Both men are amazing, and you could understand the heroine going either way. I hate when the choice is super obvious, because then what is the point? I dislike when one man does something completely out of character and becomes the bad guy. Make it make sense, you know? I also become disgusted when one man is made to look like a fool or is forgiven everything while the other is held to a higher standard. The dying hero is usually the worst. I agree that it makes it not seem like an actual choice at that point. If the choice is made prior though, I can be cool with it. Basically, it depends. I'm an angst whore, so you know I'm good with that part. A lot of the time, I want the girl to just pick both! πŸ˜‚ You know me and my RH brain! Lol .....and I just wrote a book! πŸ™ˆ I obviously feel strongly about love triangles. 🀣

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    1. Yes, I'm loving this book you wrote here LOL!! I'm glad I'm not the only one to feel so strongly about love triangles. I haven't tried Kate Stewart before, but I'm down for whatever you recommend. If you say Heartbreak Warfare is one of the best, then I need to check it out... despite how much I can't handle love triangles :)

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    2. πŸ˜‚πŸ™ŒπŸΌ Yes, you need to! If there is one love triangle I would recommend to absolutely everyone, it's that one. Let me know if you ever read it! ❤

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  2. Leave them. I hate them unless I know how things are going to go. Even then, I don't like them. I love the chart you have going here. It's perfect!

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