A while back, I read The Lunar Chronicles, a series that I absolutely loved and enjoyed, but something I couldn’t help noticing, was how each of the main female protagonists were paired-up with the male protagonists. This isn’t specific to this series either. In Throne of Glass, all the main characters get together – and don’t even get me started with The Mortal Instruments.
After noticing this trend, and seeing as it’s almost Valentine’s Day, I decided I wanted to explore whether I actually enjoyed this trope in YA by highlighting the pros and cons. So without further ado…
- Give Me All the Ships! – When all the leading characters get paired-up, you get the opportunity to obsess over a bunch of new ships in the story. Personally, I enjoyed all the couples in The Lunar Chronicles, for different reasons.
- And They All Lived Happily Ever After – When you reach the end of a novel and find that all the characters have actually survived the mayhem, it can be heart-warming to see all them all happily together, plus, it adds a sense of closure to the story.
- Diversity – Having multiple couples in a novel offers the chance to see a variety of relationships in one book. A great example of this is Six Of Crows; we get to see a relationship with a same-sex couple, a relationship of mixed ethnicities, and relationships with different body types. This helps to normalise diversity within couples.
- Drama! – Let’s be honest; when your protagonists are dating each other, that brings a lot of tension and drama to the story, which can be really fun if it’s done right. Without the drama, we wouldn’t have had amazing ships like Malec!
- Convenient, Much? – It can feel a little too convenient when all the leading characters develop feelings for each other and pair up.
- Too Much Drama? – I know I said I love the drama of pairing up characters in romantic relationships, but if this overshadows the main plot, this can become very infuriating. I don’t want to feel like I’m reading a romance novel if I’m reading something else.
- Unnecessary – There’s no need for all the characters to get together. In real life, many social groups are a mixture of couples and singles. Characters in books can be the same.
- Mismatched – If the characters put together are not a match, this can be very annoying to read. I know there’s a lot of divided opinions in Throne of Glass with regards to certain pairings, and I have to admit that when two characters are put together that I don’t like, it can make me enjoy the book less.
My Final Verdict: YAY!
I don’t mind a little romance in novels, even if it is a little convenient when all the characters get together. As long as it’s done right, it can enhance the story, and allows you to become invested in the characters even more.
What are your thoughts on pairing off all the main characters? Leave your thoughts in the comments!