Today, we welcome Charleen of Cheap Thrills for a special guest post. She is talking romance and relationships on a different level. Please read on and share your own thoughts in the comments section.
Romance is overdone.
Perhaps it's not a popular opinion to have around Valentine's Day (or maybe it is, I don't know). But I, for one, am tired of the romances, tired of the love triangles, and ready to see more non-romantic relationships featured in fiction!
I recently read Code Name Verity. While I didn't find it as amazing as a lot of people did, it's great for one thing in particular: it portrays an intensely strong friendship between two young women, a relationship that's stronger and more real than most romantic relationships I read about. One of the characters even makes the comment, "It's like being in love, discovering your best friend."
And that's so true, isn't it? We have this term -- in love -- that we apply to romance. But what about all the other relationships? What about other kinds of love? Do they not get as much attention in fiction simply because we don't have easy words to talk about them? Because we have to work for it rather than falling back on clichés?
Maybe that's unfair to authors, and certainly there are plenty of books in which a familial relationship takes center stage, or a friendship between men or between women.
The one that I really miss, though, and want to see more of, is the platonic male-female relationship. These are practically non-existent. If there's a man and a woman, it's just easier to throw them together. Sometimes it's insta-love. Sometimes it's a will-they-won't-they scenario. But somehow, there has to be a romantic subplot. It's expected. It's what the readers want.
But is it?
I can only speak for myself, of course, but it's not what I want! Not all the time, anyway. It makes it harder to enjoy the story when I'm rolling my eyes and snarking to myself, "Hmm, didn't see that coming..."
Which raises the question, do I really love seeing platonic relationships, or am I just so relieved it's not another romance? At this point, I don't care. I just want more. I want authors to push me to the point where I finish a book and think...
"Another book without the slightest hint of romance?! Come on! These relationships do exist in real life! Why can't we see them more in fiction?"
Here's to reading more books that celebrate all different kinds of love!
Thank you Charleen for sharing your love of anti-love with us!
Readers: Tell us your thoughts on platonic relationships. Do you want to see more? Any book recommendations for those of us wanting more on the platonic front?