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Monday, July 25, 2011

Book Chatter (3): Love at First Sight or Budding Relationship

Pull up a chair, relax, and let’s discuss the wonderful world of books.

Do you enjoy discussing anything and everything pertaining to books? YES!

Well, you’ve come to the right place. Every week, I’ll be sharing my thoughts on various book topics and offering prizes that pertain to the topic at hand. That’s not all – You will get to choose the weekly topic by voting on which topic to discuss for the following week. You will also be able to suggest topics by clicking on this FORM.

Love at First Sight or Budding Relationship

Ah LOVE! How I adore thee in my novels. There are moments when these relationships take my breath away when I least expect it. Whether they’re soul mates torn apart or new love on the rise, it does not matter to me as long as I continue to swoon…

I’m a big believer that LOVE conquers all, especially when it comes to books with romantic elements. The problem that I’m running into now is how these romantic relationships are developed. From the moment that we are introduced to the romantic interest in a book, there’s a possibility that we could fall utterly head over heels or crave more of the interactions between the couples as the story progresses. All it takes is a combination of a glance, an action, a description, perfect dialogue, or a beautiful setting, that could lead to immediate fireworks OR a complete and utter FAIL of chemistry between the characters. I guess depending on the various combinations, it could be HIT or MISS.

I’m sure there are plenty of factors in how we choose which we prefer. For instance, if it’s a young-adult book, I prefer the budding relationship. After all, the characters are young and who really knows what they want in high school. The exception to this is any young-adult, urban fantasy, or paranormal romance books with supernatural elements involving reincarnation, soul mates, or immortality. I guess if you’re going to live forever then it doesn’t matter that your 17 or 18.

Whether you prefer instant attraction or an intoxicating courtship, I believe we can all agree that there’s a right recipe and a wrong one. When done right, I don’t have a preference of one over the other. When done wrong, I find the relationship rushed or unrealistic. If I get the preconception that the relationship is unbelievable, then I lose all interest in the romance between the characters.

Here are some passages of love at first sight & a budding relationship that I absolutely adored.

Love at first sight
(Fallen by Lauren Kate - pg.40 HC)

She glanced at Daniel. He took his glasses off and slid them inside his jacket, then turned to look at her.

His gaze caught hers, and Luce watched as his eyes widened and then quickly narrowed in what looked like surprise. But no—it was more than that. When Daniel’s eyes held hers, her breath caught in her throat. She recognized him from somewhere.

But she would have remembered meeting someone like him. She would have remembered feeling as absolutely shaken up as she did right now.

She realized they were still locking eyes when Daniel flashed her a smile. A jet of warmth shot through her and she had to grip the bench for support. She felt her lips pull up in a smile back at him, but then he raised his hand in the air.

And flipped her off.

Luce gasped and dropped her eyes.

I was enraptured from the moment Luce began describing Daniel and when their eyes locked, that was all she wrote. I was hooked! Gotta love the soul mates angle in any story!

Budding Relationship
(Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning - pgs. 37-38 HC)

She looked beyond me, over my shoulder, and uttered a single word like a benediction. “Jericho.”

“Jericho?” I echoed, not following. “You mean the ancient city?”

“Jericho Barrons,” a rich, cultured male voice said behind me. “And you are?” Not an Irish accent. No idea what kind of accent it was, though.

I turned, with my name perched on the tip of my tongue, but it didn’t make it out. No wonder Fiona had said his name like that. I gave myself a brisk inward shake and stuck out my hand. “MacKayla, but most people call me Mac.”

“Have you a surname, MacKayla?” He pressed my knuckles briefly to his lips and released my hand. My skin tingled where his mouth had been.

Was it my imagination or was his gaze predatory? I was afraid I was getting a little paranoid. It had been a long, odd day after an odder night. Ashford Journal headlines were beginning to form in my mind: Second Lane Sister Meets with Foul Play in Dublin Bookshop. “Just Mac is fine,” I evaded.

“And what do you know of this shi-sadu, just Mac?”

“Nothing. That’s why I was asking. What is it?”

“I have no idea,” he said. “Where did you hear of it?”

“Can’t remember. Why do you care?”

He crossed his arms. I crossed mine too. Why were these people lying to me? What in the world was this thing I was asking about?

He studied me with his predator’s gaze, assessing me from head to toe. I studied him back. He didn’t just occupy space; he saturated it. The room had been full of books before, now it was full of him. About thirty, six foot two or three, he had dark hair, golden skin, and dark eyes. His features were strong, chiseled. I couldn’t pinpoint his nationality any more than I could his accent; some kind of European crossed with Old World Mediterranean or maybe an ancestor with dark Gypsy blood. He wore an elegant, dark gray Italian suit, a crisp white shirt, and a muted patterned tie. He wasn’t handsome. That was too calm a word. He was intensely masculine. He was sexual. He attracted. There was an omnipresent carnality about him, in his dark eyes, in his full mouth, in the way he stood. He was the kind of man I wouldn’t flirt with in a million years.

Phew…I would have just started with the above paragraph but I wanted to capture the first moment these two saw each other. It's like you just knew their meeting was of historic proportions. Fans of this series had to endure a long wait for these two to come to their senses but the journey was worthwhile. These two are probably my favorite couple of all-time in a paranormal series.

Here’s a list of some of my current favorite couples in no particular order (released over the past 5 yrs):
SN: As you can tell, the majority of them are in Series

Sam & Grace (The Wolves of Mercy Falls by Maggie Stiefvater)
Mac & Jericho (The Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning)
Cat & Bones (The Night Huntress Series by Jeaniene Frost)
Rose & Dimitri (Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead)
Anna & Étienne (Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins)
Nora & Patch (Hush, Hush Series by Becca Fitzpatrick)
Lennie & Joey (The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson)
Clare & Jace (The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare)
Kate & Curran (Kate Daniel Series by Ilona Andrews)
Elena & Raphael (Guild Hunter Series by Nalini Singh)
Clara & Tucker (Unearthly Series by Cynthia Hand)
Merit & Ethan (Chicagoland Vampires by Chloe Neill)
Grace & Daniel (Dark Divine Series by Bree Despain)
Luce & Daniel (Fallen Series by Lauren Kate)
Meagan & Ash (Iron Fey Series by Julie Kagawa)
Faythe & Mark (Shifters Series by Rachel Vincent)
Yelena & Valek (Magic Study Series by Maria Snyder)
Bella & Edward (Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer)

I’m sure I’m missing some (BDB Series, Highlander Series, etc. These are the ones that stand out to me)…

I know that we all have favorite romance novels or favorite couples but what do you think are the ingredients that separate a good romance from an unforgettable romance? How do the two play a role in your preferences?


Winner will receive his/her choice of book mentioned or favorite love at first sight or budding relationship book.  Pre-orders included.
Rules: 1 Winner! Must comment to be eligible.

Please fill out this FORM!

Contest ends @ 11:59pm (CST) August 8, 2011. US & Canadian Residents only.


  1. I think the first hint of romance in a novel is one of my favorite things to read. I love that one distinct moment where you know love is in the air and anything is possible.

  2. I personally love tension. The more the better. It only heightens the anticipation. Plus, humor. If my characters can laugh at each other, I instantly see the chemistry.

  3. I do think that a budding relationship is much better and believable.

  4. Umm I think it's all about personality. I like when things aren't easy, I love relationships to be colorful and snarky comments are a plus. Dimitri & Rose and Cat & Bones are my favorite couples ^^

  5. Re: Tynga & Vivien - I agree 100% when it comes to tension in a relationship. It builds character.

  6. I don't mind love at first sight, but I think that sometimes paranormal romance (esp. in YA) will have the romance as the main plot, which doesn't always work for me.

    I need to see that the love is evolving. I like seeing them tested by bad guys or different situations. I don't like when the leads throw their life dreams away just to be with a guy they think they are in love with.

    But I do love a good romance, when it works.

  7. Any mention of a love story and I'm immediately drawn to the books. I LOVE LOVE LOVE love stories! They're usually so freaking adorable and I just can't stop reading. Rose and Dimitri are one of my absolute favorites.

  8. I think I prefer slow developing relationships, they make the story sound more real.

    My favorite of all is Meg and John from Going Too Far by Jennifer Echols, they're relationship goes sorta slow and its my favorite of all :))

  9. It takes time for one to love another, and from what I've read, survival of the fittest can quicken that time, making it an unforgettable love. For example, Ian and Wanda from The Host by Stephenie Meyer. They didn't get off on the right start, but trying to survive, Wanda from Ian and the others, and then Ian & Wanda from the's pretty amazing to think about because after all of that, it's like heaven after hell.



  10. I, personally, love the love-at-first-sight romances in novels. If I can't believe in it in my books, then when can I? Novels don't have to be realistic, and I think that they are a lot more fun to read when they're as far from reality as possible.

    klamber1 at unca dot edu

  11. I love to read about love at first sight I also love the bad boys too!
    I love Rose and Dimitri my favorite I love their story not all easy but a nice ending! I have alot of favorites great list alot are my favortes too!

  12. Well, for the most part, I am definitely a fan of love that grows. I mean, if it's really well done, I can totally fall for love at first sight as well. Great topic! I love how many favourite couples we have that overlap :) Thanks for the giveaway!

  13. I would have to agree, if it's well done then i don't mind love at first sight. I do prefer a relationship that builds because most of the times the love at first sight is contrived and falls completely flat for me. One of my favourite budding relationships is between Meghan and Ash in Julie Kagawa's The Iron Fey series.


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