**Firstly, I would like to say that though I list these love triangles as ones I hate, it by no means reflects on the author--that is to say, most of these authors are among my favorites. Even if I am not a fan of what they did romantically, I still enjoyed their series... and also, though I disagree with their decision to do create these situations, I still admire and respect them.
**Secondly, I welcome any and all opinions. I have a feeling many of you will disagree with me.
**Thirdly, I don't think that I am the right kind of reader for love triangles. I don't mean to be offensive, so please please please don't take any of what I say that way.
- What: the Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare
- When: throughout the trilogy (or so I'm guessing)
- Why: Let me first say that I love Cassandra Clare's writing and the world she's built... but I'm on the opposite field--I completely disagree with Malinda Lo when she says that love triangles are at their best when the love interests are all interconnected. To me, that just means the love triangle is unnecessarily dramatic. There was a time when I liked the same guy as my friend, but I stepped aside and didn't let the guy know, because I valued my friendship more than that. And though all that has been released of the Infernal Devices trilogy is the first book, I worry that though the guys may not actively fight against each for Tessa, it will eat away at their friendship... Which could be avoided... if there wasn't a triangle in the first place! SO much drama! Argh. And worse is that I actually like the characters, the romantic interests, but instead of making me Team Jem or Team Will, it makes me dislike that neither of them can SEE the other's interest.
- What: the Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins
- When: throughout the trilogy
- Why: One, Katniss is a fighter so it seems absolutely ridiculous to me at least that she would be caught up in something like a love triangle. Two, I absolutely hate the way this was resolved. Gale makes one mistake and bam, he's out of her life. While this says something about Katniss, it also seemed like a cop-out; how to make Katniss would choose between the two? Make a situation that's impossible to ignore. Also, I hate that just because one guy made a mistake means that the other guy is automatically assumed "in" with the girl. I feel like Katniss would have been the perfect protagonist to be like 'eh, sorry, I don't need either of you.' (Which would be such an interesting addition to YA.)
- What: the Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa
- When: throughout the series
- Why: I don't understand what is the purpose of this love triangle. And for it to even work, you need the interests to actually show interest in the character. Puck's attempts to woo Meghan felt meager at best in the second book. Puck never had never a chance, so why make the best friend fall in love with the protag.? More unnecessary. Also, am I the only one to think that it's kind of creepy that Puck, who knew Meghan since she was six (I think?) and who is a centuries old fairy, would fall in love with her? (Even the Ash thing is a little creepy, but at least Ash didn't watch her grow up.) The most I could glimpse from this love triangle is that Puck needed to be willing to follow Meghan through any crazy plan she had, but really, with Puck's personality, it seems rather trite and unnecessary. Seems like he'd follow her anyways out of loyalty towards his king and friend.
- What: the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead
- When: Mostly books 5-6
- Why: Because, just like with Hunger Games, we knew who the protagonist would end up with, and it was doomed from the start. Whenever that happens, it again feels unnecessary. Rose wasn't struggling with choosing who made her her; she was struggling with the fact that Dimitri had rejected her. She turned to the nearest available guy, which was a completely mean move on her part.... And added more drama when one guy got hurt due to her actions and what she knew was wrong. I still like Rose as a character - she's definitely flawed - but cheating is one of those issues that my beliefs are completely black-and-white on.
- What: the Nightshade series by Andrea Cremer
- When: throughout the series
- Why: I love Andrea Cremer's writing and I love that there are such sexy scenes in her YA books--that she doesn't shy from addressing a girl's libido... but to me, this triangle isn't necessary. It is sort of like Calla is choosing two different sides--questioning her destiny and (perhaps) trusting the Searchers with Shay or accepting what has already been chosen for her with Ren--but neither "side" feels like it's one half of her identity (if that makes sense). Calla is still a wolf around Shay and will never stop being a Guardian regardless of her choice to ally herself with the Searchers, and in his ignorance, Ren isn't even really on the other side either; if he was, maybe this triangle would acceptable--it would then be a choice between what side of the War to fight on and would reflect Calla's beliefs... And the feminist edge to the story would really shine if Ren was less nice.
- What: the Fallen series by Lauren Kate
- When: Book 1
- Why: I still don't understand this triangle. It was like, hey, Cam is showing Luce interest for what purpose? For what end is he trying to tempt her and why is he fighting for her? And later on, it was never explained why he liked Luce; it seems more like he just wanted to piss Daniel off though really, his interactions with Luce didn't come off that way at all. On the other hand, the Miles/Luce/Daniel triangle is interesting because that actually reflects what Luce believes--whether or not she'd choose "everlasting" love with Daniel despite its cursed edge or settle for normalcy with Miles.
- What: the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer
- When: Books 2-4
- Why: Because really, if you hate love triangles, this one is pretty much the prime example to use. Two guys interested in the same girl (though I will never understand why) and the girl is "torn" between them though you know who she will choose in the end etc. etc. etc. And choosing between both boys has nothing to do with choosing different lives or different aspects of herself. It's just a which-love-is-more-true kind of thing.
But what really bothers me is that love triangles make the character look worse... makes me dislike the character... because it's really not fair to both people to string them along just because you can't choose who you think "will be better for you." Or who you think you like more.
What I usually like about contemporary novels is that thankfully, they usually don't have love triangles (except for Stephanie Perkins's work, which I think works fine for her plots).
Also... I think that there's about an 85% chance that if a book includes a love triangle, I will hate it.
What about you :)? Agree / Disagree? More to add to the list?