It’s about bloody time I’ve done another discussion post. I’ve had the ambition to do it weekly, but I seem to have forgotten. 😅 I’ve been wanting to write about this topic for a long time, and Kathy @ Book and Munches is what sparked me to think about tropes that may persuade me to DNF a book.
So how much time do we waste with dealing with annoying tropes? Too many. Yes, some work, while others are overused and drawn out. I don’t know how many times I’ve rolled my eyes at ridiculous avoidable storylines. But I must admit that, if used correctly, tropes can enhance an already brilliant book and series. But I wouldn’t be here complaining about them if all of them were.
Now here are my top five tropes I’d love to see disappear:
Abused Woman/Girl Healing by Falling in Love with an Alpha Male
This kind of trope can go either way really. Some authors can pull it off rather well, and others, well, can’t. But some authors, particularly paranormal romance ones, believe a woman must fall in love with an alpha male in order to heal from an abusive relationship. No, she doesn’t. Frankly, she should run the other way and maybe find a nice guy who’s the exact opposite. But most of the paranormal romance industry would keel over and die if it weren’t so dependent on this trope.
Apparently, a bi man and a bi woman simply cannot date because their relationship would be seen as a heteroromantic one. Excuse me? Let me all remind you that it is possible and happens all the time. The bi man can get the girl, or he can get the man and vice versa. Frankly, there is no polar extreme in sexuality. There is no “either gay” or “either straight.”
Do 👏 not 👏 promote 👏 it, especially in YA books. I don’t care if over half of all YA readers are adults. They come from all ages, and we shouldn’t promote that cheating is the best (and only) solution to be with the person we want, while we just happen to be in a relationship or vice versa.
One reason why I am hesitant to read Kendare Blake’s One Dark Throne is that the author bases her story off of cheating. And I couldn’t stomach this arc when I read the first book. It made me sick.
Pitting Women against Each Other
Why must we continue using this trope?! We women should be standing up for each other and supporting one another. One trope Victoria Aveyard uses in Red Queen is this one. Evangeline pits herself against Mare. Now their so-called friendship (or mutual agreement) is much better later on in the series, and now, I don’t want to do a facepalm when I read their scenes. But when I first read it, I almost gagged.
Normalizing Abusive Relationships
I don’t why I’m stating this in 2018, but let’s not forget that we shouldn’t encourage or even normalize abuse. Whether emotional, psychological, physical, and sexual, abusive relationships should never, ever, be accepted into the book community. I cannot stand when I read it in books.
When I see readers are still shipping Feylin (Tamlin and Feyre) from ACOTAR, I want to smash my head up against my computer screen. Feylin didn’t consist of love. We do not disregard what the abuser does or has done. And we do not make excuses for the said abuser. And let’s be clear with one point: women can also be abusers as well.