And welcome to my tour stop where Claire McFall shares her favourites romances! I did not expect Noughts & Crosses to topple Romeo and Juliet from its timeless throne!! I really need to read this book. Anyway, Enjoy!
Top 5 Literary Romances
If you met me on the street, I don’t think you’d guess I was a secret Romance reader… and a not-so-secret romance writer. Everything I’ve ever written – everything – has a hint of romance about it. Why? Because love makes the world go ‘round.
OK, so gravity and magnetic pull and other science stuff makes the world go round, but love makes my world go round, so here are my top 5 literary romances.
Number 1: Callum and Sephy
Oh. Oh sigh. If you haven’t read Noughts and Crosses, do it. Now. (Well, maybe after Trespassers…) It’s a really clever take on racism, inverting the power struggle between the black and white community, but what makes me adore the book is the love between Callum and Sephy. It’s Romeo and Juliet all over again – he’s white and nothing, she’s black and the daughter of a very important (horrible!) man. They’re at polar ends of society and no one wants them to be together, but they can’t stay apart. One word: doomed. I won’t give away the ending, but I sobbed. I sobbed big ugly tears.
Number 2: Rain and Ellie
This one’s more adult (she’s 25, he’s over a thousand!) but it’s high fantasy and it isn’t “adult” adult (ahem) so I’ve included it because it’s just… epic. There are five books in the series but it starts with Lord of the Fading Lands. Rain is a fey king who can also turn into a Tairen (a big scary fire-breathing cat) and Ellie is a girl who’s on her way to being declared a spinster – not a good thing in Celeria where she lives. They are fated to be together – there’s a whole complicated Sheitanitsa bond thing. Together the two of them have to find a way to save the fey, because as a race they are dying. Even though they don’t die. Uhm…
I’m doing a terrible job of explaining it, but it’s good – and you should read it. Ellie’s great because she’s so reassuringly normal – on the surface, at least – and Rain is swoony handsome, brave and all noble and stuff. He’s delish.
Number 3: Ron and Hermione
What? It’s my list. I love Ron & Hermione. Who didn’t get all warm fuzzies when Ron accidentally got poisoned by Romilda’s chocolates and was calling out for Hermione in delirium? And then, in Deathly Hallows when they fell asleep holding hands? They’re such an unlikely couple who are so perfect for each other, and their romance grew in such tiny increments I didn’t even notice it at first. I was rooting for Hermoine and Harry – so glad I was wrong!
Number 4: Edward and Bella
The Twilight series comes in for a lot of criticism from some quarters, but, actually, those four books got me back into reading. I was in my probation year to be a teacher and I hadn’t read anything in years (!!!) that I didn’t have to for university or school. My best friend handed me Twilight and said, “read this”. I did, in a day. Then I went out the next day and bought the next three and binge-read them. I think it was 36 hours before my husband saw my face, it was buried so far into the books.
The Twilight books gave me that feeling again – you know the happy warm glow you get when a book hits all your emotional buttons?
Now in the movies, I’m Team Jacob (sorry, Edward)… but in the books I love Edward and Bella. I love how Bella is the one to be forward with him – girl power! We don’t have to sit in the corner and wait to be asked. She fought for her man, and she got him.
Number 5: Romeo and Juliet
You didn’t expect that, did you? Well, you probably should have.
You know, just because it’s old, doesn’t mean it isn’t any good. Shakespeare has become something that’s just taught in schools, something full of funny words that you have to drag yourself through because your English teacher says so. And that’s so sad!
Romeo and Juliet fell in love at first sight, were so sure of their feelings that they got married, stat, and then they died rather than live without each other. If that’s not romance, I don’t know what is!
The thing is, the language is hard, I won’t lie. If you’re not brave enough to give it a go, or you do but you just can’t see the story for the ye olde English, try watching it on DVD (Just this one time!). Baz Luhrman did an awesome version with Leonardo di Caprio and Clare Danes.