The “Young Adult” romance I have stumbled lately on my random reading picks from Amazon on quite a few Young Adult novels, some good, some note quite so, but they all shared the same pattern.
The romance in YA novels has the same pattern (in 99.9% of books read) with all the ingredients that make me think that somehow teenagers will get it wrong, that along the lines they will understand a story worse than Cinderella’s…
The ingredients: we’re taking unexperienced girl and throw her in the mix with a hot guy, preferably dark, rich and with a murky past, then brand the chemical attraction and adolescent hormones as “true love”. Then we spice things up a bit with some drama and controlling/abusive/manipulative behaviour from our guy and we stamp is as being cool and seductive; nice, good guys are overrated. For extra flavour, we can remove the guy from the picture so that our girl can crumble into pieces, cry her eyes out, contemplate suicide because life without him is unbearable and there is No Way for her to live without him. Then we bring him back into the picture and he’s the hero of the day after he says “Sorry” and gives her a good kiss and a smack on the bum. 😉
It is also okay to think that you are destined, a.k.a you have no control over your emotions, body and soul. She is destined to be with him for all the stupid reasons and there is no real need for real communication because destined love doesn’t need that bullshit, right? I mean, they are destined to love each other, why should the petty details like his huge criminal record, the fact that he’s actually a monster (literally) coming from hell, has creepy stalking tendencies, etc, would actually matter.
“Soul mates” know each other from the womb and of course she knows he is not going to rape her, or sink her fangs into her throat or any other horrid thing, because they have the bond. Really? Are you f*ucking joking me? Plus that, are you really telling me that it’s either “fangy” over there or nobody else to love? Someone has to tell these gullible girls that the world doesn’t just spin around One Guy no matter how hunky, sexy, alluring, smart, witty, mysterious, etc he is. Love is a bit (insert sarcasm here) more complex and complicated than that and soul mates and destiny doesn’t even begin to cover it.
It’s not only an unhealthy message, it’s also bad writing since you don’t have to justify anything you throw in there since it can be branded as “true love”, “destiny” and/or “soul mates”.