How YA Contemporaries Lied to Me Pt. 3


We are now coming to the stunning conclusion of Book Princess’s Mandy’s award-winning introspective look into her sordid romantic past and the tropes that are prevalent in the YA contemporary romance community.

…that was a mouthful to just say, hey y’all, welcome to part 3 how YA romances tricked me into believing tropes will happen in my love life. Fun times. If you’ve missed part 1 or 2, click here and here.

This will be the final one (…I think, but we all know how much YA romances love a good comeback so perhaps we’ll see a few more pop up if you or I come up with some other much needed to be talked about tropes), so shall we all take a moment to thank the book blog gods that we’ll finally put an end to the oversharing from me?

Myth #1: Enemies to Lovers

Okay, while some of these are great, I’m not usually a fan of the whole enemies to lovers trope…mostly because I mean, they’re your enemy for a reason, right? I can’t see falling for anyone that I hated with a fiery passion and considered my sworn nemesis. But alas, YA loves it, and I have had a few that I read that turned out amazing, so I will forgive the popularity of this trope. Most of the books in YA and in this trope usually feature two people that have had some big misunderstanding or one has “wronged” the other person. However, by midway through the book with all the hijinks and pranks and glares, the two discover, oh, wait, maybe they really aren’t so terrible, and maybe they should just passionately kiss or something.

Real life practicality? Well, I’ve never really had an enemy, and the sort of people that I did strongly dislike I never wanted to make out with. I did bicker with this one guy in eighth grade and could have fell into this category…except, well, he never accepted my friend request, so I suppose we’ll never know the possibilities since we’re still stuck in the enemy category?

Check out: Any Boy But You; Magnolia; and The Only Thing Worst Than Me is You for more of this trope.

Myth #2: Sherlock & Watson

Okay, this is a small subset of the mystery/thriller category in the YA genre, but I loveeeeeeeeeeee a good little romantic subplot in a mystery book. If I can solve an epic mystery and have a little swoony romance, I AM SO HAPPY IT IS UNBELIEVABLE. So Excited. Anyway, there are two focuses in the mystery romance category.

  1. The love interest is totally being super kind and helping out to solve the mystery. He is the super kind best friend; the random person that has some kind of vested interest in seeing the outcome; or perhaps the new kid who is intrigued by our lovable Sherlock.
  2. The love interest is a suspect. In the midst of drama and thrilling mystery, the main character gets close to our love interest so they can discover their brooding reasons and that he or she really isn’t the law-breaking troublemaker everyone thinks they are. Most likely, the love interest will help to clear their own name.

Real life situations? Well, I’ve never had to solve a mystery other than where did I put my phone and my Watson is usually my cat who follows me around, hoping I will give him so treats. It does seem pretty far-fetched, though, but then again, it’s a staple in the mystery/thriller genre so who knows? Could be totes real.

Check out: One of Us Is Lying; This Is Our Story; and Famous Last Words for more of this trope.

Myth #3: That Adorable, Funky Premise

Okay, I love me some adorable, funky premises, and YA does it wellllllllllll. Some are completely absurd in practicality, but oh so brilliant in book land. Being locked in a library with the bad boy? Fake boyfriend contracts? Being forced to text your cousin’s love interest and falling for him yourself? Well, no chance these will actually happen in my life, but they are fun and adorable and they bring out a lot of the reasons why we love to read: it’s cute; it makes us happy; and gives us a chance to experience something we normally wouldn’t experience. Yes, I will never be locked in a library with a cute guy, but I can experience it in By Your Side. Yes, I will never throw coffee on a man that my parents arranged for me to marry, but I can laugh about it in When Dimple Met Rishi. And yes, I will never be stuck on a desert island with a guy, but I can still swoon over it in A Map for Wrecked Girls. That’s the beauty of YA contemporary romance, and it’s why I’m going to keep reading it for the fun, funnies, and forever swoons.

What do you think? Why do you read contemporary? What are some of your YA romance fails or wins? Let’s discuss in the comments below!

43 thoughts on “How YA Contemporaries Lied to Me Pt. 3

  1. I’m not that into contemporary novels, because they feel so plain to me. I don’t know… I guess it’s just not my cup of tea.

    I prefer fantasy novels, to be honest. Yet, dozens of them have that enemies to lovers trope and it has started getting old! If it’s done properly, it doesn’t bother me, but that instant love after years and years of hate, well, it’s not for me.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I do agree that fantasy especially loves the enemies to lovers trope. I’m not quite sure why, but it is just doesn’t mesh well as you said, after years of hate, they just start to feel the love. So very odd.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the enemies to lovers trope. I’m not sure I’ve ever come across it in real life. Maybe that boy who picked on you in school to get your attention (this has never happened to me).

    Believe it or not though I have pretended to be the girlfriend of a guy I had a major crush on, so that definitely happens 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. To quote Gayle Forman, I love all the tropes. Seriously, the only ones I take issue with are student/teacher and BF mom/dad (those especially are ewww). I love fiction for all the outrageous, unrealistic things them give me. This was a fun series. Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ahhh so confession time: I live for hate to love. They are the best things ever and I added your recommendations to my TBR. Some of my favorites are Alex, Approximately and Magnolia! Also, that wacky funky premise. SO TRUE! Like getting locked in somewhere or fake boyfriend co tracts they are SO GOOD but are never going to happen so I guess that means I’ll never fall in love… 😦 (just kidding but also kinda not)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahahahaha, they are so good when they are well done. Magnolia definitely was the greatest one I’ve seen done. I’ve yet to read Alex, Approximately so I definitely need to do it. Oooooooh, I forgot about all those fake boyfriend contracts. That definitely has to be in its own section. XD But lol (same, same D:)

      Liked by 1 person

  5. So YA romances are pretty over the top and unrealistic *shrugs* its addicting, what can I say? Story time: Can I relate to that enemies to lovers trope….maybe yes, but no. I disliked the kid (but mostly his friends) and he disliked me and my friends…but we both mutually had a crush on each other. It’s very odd, this “relationship”. And I wouldn’t count dancing “the slow dance” in the school gym as overcoming our mutual dislike for one another. To this day i still don’t know what little Rendz saw in him! *shrugs again*

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love this series of blog posts so much. I think you should do more! LOL. 😀 Your story of the guy from eight grade made me laugh out loud. Totally his loss for not accepting your friend request. I still think you should turn your story of the boy on the train into a novel. Just saying. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awh, thanks so much, Krysti! ❤ I might consider it! 😉 Lol, it took me the longest time to figure out that he never accepted my friend request. XD Then I was like, oh, maybe he just doesn't go on anymore but that theory was shot down when he changed his profile picture. XD It took me a long time, but I made sure I figured out how to unfriend request him. XD But lol, I think I might have to! 😉 That whole train experience was definitely YA worthy.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I actually really like number 2. As unrealistic as it is, I think it is the most realistic of the tropes here; not all “mysteries” are murder, haha. And not all Holmes and Watson types solve mysteries together. I just don’t fit into either category, haha, although I wish I did and I love reading them, and I love writing them. I’ve already read One of Us is Lying and Famous Last Words, I’ll have to check out the other one!
    Oh, and for a Webtoon with a Holmes and Watson dynamic…I recommend Dr. Frost! It’s one of my favorite Webtoons, if not my favorite. Have you checked out some yet?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This Is Our Story was a really good one! It was a super intriguing mystery, and it got me until the very end. But yes! I agree!
      …I totally have failed, Kate. I keep getting into slumps and then it’s like ehhhhhhhhhh reading and then when I go back to it, I’m like READINGGGGGGGG ALLLLLLL THE BOOKS. And then I focus on them and not the webtoons. I do need to get my butt on them, though.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh gosh, my TBR is piling up with that…I need to check it out soon then!
        And that’s okay! I do hope you check some out soon though, and get committed to finishing one. Maybe start with a (short?) completed Webtoon. My personal favorite completed Webtoon that is under 30 chapters is Annarasumanara. It’s a total beauty in every way, like the art, story, and characters. I think it’s right up your alley.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. 38 comments???????? What happened??? Where did the people go???? We will revitalize, I know we will…

    ALSO, I think you should know this, but I have many enemies. They flock to me, idk, I can’t help it. And if they fall in love after a while, what can I say, I’m irresistible. Things be hard like that sometimes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahahahaha, IDK. I’ve had like 101 comments before. I think a lot of them would be having a lot of mini conversations below as well that were super drawn out.

      ahahahaha omg, i would say i would be surprised but i mean, you are a evil genius.

      Liked by 1 person

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