Blogging from A to Z, Writing

D: Drawing Love Triangles

A2Z-2013-BADGE-001Small_zps669396f9Let’s talk about love triangles. Those seem to be a divisive subject. Some people love them, because they’re projecting or like the tension or some other reason; others hate them because they’re not realistic.

I happen to be in the LOVE camp.

I feel like I need to qualify this, though. I love love triangles if they’re done well. Even if the MC doesn’t end up with my Team in the end (I hate to simplify it like that, but it is what it is), I can still appreciate a well-crafted love triangle after screaming and throwing things.

Examples Of Love Triangles That Work (in my totally expert opinion):

  • Lena/Alex/Julian from Requiem by Lauren Oliver: Am I irrevocably a member of Team Julian who spent the entire book wanting to punch Alex’s stupid face in? Yes. But Lena was so torn between these two guys for different reasons, and it was heartbreakingly believable, and you literally have no idea who she’s going to end up with until the last few pages (or maybe that’s just me? I’m oblivious?)
  • Celaena/Chaol/Dorian from Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas: I’ve stated my allegiance to Team Dorian on numerous occasions, but I actually wouldn’t care if Celaena and Chaol rode off into the sunset together. Both of these gentlemen appeal to different sides of Celaena, and it’s clear not even she knows what she wants.
  • Raisa/Han/The Fells from the Seven Kingdoms Series by Cinda Williams Chima: An entity that isn’t human totally counts, in my estimation. Is Raisa involved with numerous men throughout the series? Yes. But she’s involved with all of them at different times, so to me, that doesn’t count. However, there is one constant throughout all of this, and that is Raisa’s loyalty to her kingdom of The Fells. She really wants to be with Han, but she also doesn’t want to risk her kingdom, a conflict so realistic I might’ve thrown the book to the floor a few times because I just couldn’t handle THE FEELS.
  • Alyssa/Jeb/Morpheus from Splintered by A.G. Howard: I have a feeling I’m mostly just repeating myself at this point, so I’ll just leave it at: conflict. strapping young lads.

Essentially, what makes a love triangle work for me is there has to be a genuine conflict. I’m not really into the triangles where it’s totally obvious who the MC is going to end up with in the end – think Twilight, where we all know Bella is going to ditch Jacob the second Edward comes back, or Lauren DeStefano’s Chemical Garden Trilogy, because the relationship with Gabriel isn’t developed enough for us to understand why Rhine would run away with him.

So. Love triangles. Thoughts? Favorite love triangles? What makes a love triangle work for you?

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10 thoughts on “D: Drawing Love Triangles”

  1. Triangles are okay but… they seem to be used a lot just so there’s tension in a plot, as if the author can’t think of something else that could cause a crisis for the MC.

  2. I haven’t read those you mentioned and the only one I can think of that I enjoyed is the one in the Infernal Devices series. Will or Jem? Tough choice, imo.

  3. Have to say I hate love triangles (which are never actually triangles, are they? They’re more like love pup-tents), but I agree that things like this need to be done correctly if the tension and conflict are going to play out well. It’s the same for stories with love/hate relationships. They can be immensely powerful, but they have to be done right!

  4. I’m a fan of love triangles. Sometimes there are moments like this in real life where you feel you need to choose between two *ahem* things. As for triangles in books, I like it when there’s suspense. Who’s he/she going to pick? Especially if you’re really invested and rooting for one over the other.

    Have fun with a-z.

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