Tough Travels: Forbidden Love

tough travels

It’s Thursday again so I’m participating in the Tough Travels meme which is hosted by Nathan of Fantasy Review Barn. These posts are fun explorations of common tropes in fantasy, (sometimes) inspired by Diana Wynne Jones’s The Tough Guide to Fantasyland. Join me in the search for examples of this week’s topic – and don’t forget to check out other people’s lists, they’re wonderful and my TBR pile grows every week because of them!

This week’s topic is very close to me, as we’re looking for FORBIDDEN LOVE: even in Fantasyland parents aren’t always happy with their children’s choice in partners. Yep, that’s true.

You know, paranormal romance is FULL of these examples. I mean, it’s a really common trope anyway but you can’t read a vampire or werewolf novel without someone being all “I’m not good for you” or “he’s trying to eat you, you little fool” but I managed to leave them off this list for the most part.

But if you think that I had a bunch of ideas straightaway, think again. So I enlisted A.’s help and the ones marked with a *star are his ideas, so thanks! <3 (Also, I usually use the dragon-head post dividers for Tough Travels but hearts are much more appropriate this week, no?)

srcek

  • daughter-smoke-bone-laini-taylorAkiva and Karou from Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy. This was my first pick. I spent so much time with this trilogy it’s permanently etched into my memory/mind/soul. Akiva is an angel – Karou is human (or is she?!?!). Anyway, just in case you haven’t read this yet (you REALLY should!), I’m not saying anything else.
  • *Burrich and Lady Patience from Robin Hobb’s Farseer trilogy. Ahh, the age-old conflict between classes.
  • *Jamie and Cersei Lannister from George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. Well, this is less of a families-at-war thing…
  • *Jon Snow and Ygritte from George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. You know nothing, Jon Snow… GAH this story is another example of why I dislike Martin…
  • night-circus-morgenstern-erinCelia and Marco from Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus. I just finished this one last week. Celia and Marco are forced to compete in a game of magic so convoluted and elaborate, it’s no wonder they fall for each other.
  • Clary and Jace from Cassandra Clare’s The Mortal Instruments series. Yeah, yeah, it’s bad. But Clary and Jace think they’re siblings for a while, which puts a damper on their budding romance. Aww.
  • Seraphina and Lucian from Rachel Hartman’s SeraphinaShe’s a half-dragon court musician. He’s the prince, engaged to the future queen.
  • Paige and Warden from Samantha Shannon’s The Bone SeasonShe’s a dreamwalker, he’s a kind of alien – and their races are at war. OF COURSE they fall in love, even if Paige has a bit of a Stockholm Syndrome (but Warden is a really reluctant jailor so there’s that).

Honorable mention goes to The Accident Season by Moïra Fowley-Doyle (YES, I’m including her again, it’s like she’s becoming my next Lynch!), but I can’t say much more than this because it would really spoil everything.

srcek

Which star-crossed fantasy couple have I forgotten to include this week? 

Do you like a romance where the couple have to fight to stay together?

I’d love to hear from you! :)

  • Greg Hill

    I would add Aragorn and arwen, although they end up together so not sure if that count! I like your choices, don’t know all of them- but yes to Jon and Ygritte. I liked Ygritte… :(

    • Ohh, I didn’t even think of Tolkien’s work! Aragorn and Arwen are an excellent choice. Some of these end up together, too, so that’s not a deal-breaker for including them. I liked Ygritte, too, she was a great, strong character. And very good for Jon! I like how he loosened up with her.

  • Lynn Williams

    I tried to have an example for LotR and considered Aragorn and Arwen – I think I could have got away with it.
    NIce List – I also meant to add the Laini Taylor but I forgot it in the final list! I did have the Shannon book. The Lanisters – eugh! Jace and Clarey is another near example of that very thing! Such a lot of forbidden love!
    Lynn :D

    • Yeah, Arwen and Aragorn are a great star-crossed couple!
      I can’t handle brother-sister couples too well, either. And yes, Jace and Clary are pretty weird for a while, what with all the feelings of guilt and everything.

  • I’ve only read one of the books you’ve mentioned – City of Bones. I do like them, though, but I was all torn because of the brother/sister thing.

    • I binge-read the first four, I think, and they were pretty interesting and filled with action. They’re hardly the best thing out there but they’re entertaining. And I know I’ll be checking out the new series for sure! :)

  • I wanted Jon and Ygritte to work so bad! If only they had stayed in that cave… :( That was a moment for me too when I may have cursed out Martin’s name.

    Another from ASOIAF is Theon and Ashsa. They weren’t actually a couple, but if Theon had had his way at the start… LOL

    • That cave – one of very few genuinely nice and sexy moments in Martin’s books. And I thought the casting for the tv series was perfect, too!

      Oh man, why did you have to go and drag Theon into this?! :D He’s such a rat – even from the start.

  • Maraia

    Yay, I know all of these except Jon Snow and Ygritte! (I don’t know if she was introduced before I stopped reading or not, but her name doesn’t even ring a bell.)

    A big cringe to the Clary-and-Jace-as-siblings plot line. I truly hate that trope. I already checked to make sure you’ve read Shadow Scale, so I can safely say that I LOVED the dynamic between Seraphina and Lucian in the first book, but the second was a complete disappointment to me. I wanted more banter and sexual tension, haha.

    I’d like to add Ziri and Liraz to your list, because I ship them like mad. :D I’ll also add pretty much all ships in Juliet Marillier’s books, because she sure knows how to write a painful love story.

    Ooh, I just saw Aragron and Arwen in the comment below, and I have to agree. Although I’m embarrassed I didn’t think of them myself.

    • I’M TYPING THIS WITH MY EYES CLOSED!!! :D (But seriously, I’m not reading your comment, sorry, and thanks for the warning!) :)

      • Maraia

        Here’s the redacted version:

        Yay, I know all of these except Jon Snow and Ygritte! (I don’t know
        if she was introduced before I stopped reading or not, but her name
        doesn’t even ring a bell.)

        A big cringe to the Clary-and-Jace-as-siblings plot line. I truly hate that trope. I already checked to make sure you’ve read Shadow Scale, so I can safely say that I LOVED the dynamic between Seraphina and Lucian in the first book, but the second was a complete disappointment to me. I wanted more banter and sexual tension, haha.

        I’d like to add Ziri and Liraz to your list, because I ship them like mad. :D

        Ooh, I just saw Aragron and Arwen in the comment below, and I have to agree. Although I’m embarrassed I didn’t think of them myself.

        • Ygritte is a great character, she’s one of the Wildlings and a fiercely independent young woman. She takes Jon to bed (umm… cave?) and IS KILLED, naturally. >.<

          Ugh, yes. When I found out Clary and Jace were probably siblings at the end of book 1 I almost quit the series. THE ABSOLUTEMOST UNSEXIEST THING EVER.

          And yeah, I wished Seraphina and Lucian could have spent more time together but I really liked how that love triangle turned out :)

          YES, Ziri and Liraz are a wonderful, wonderful couple, but I skipped them because by the time they got together, their relationship wasn't as forbidden anymore. But yes.

          I've been kicking myself for A&A, too – they're a classic example! :)

          • Maraia

            Lovely, sounds like classic Martin. (Lol “take Jon to cave”)

            Ah, that’s a good point about Ziri and Liraz.

  • Don’t even talk to me and Jon/Ygritte. Still not over it. Celia and Marco’s love is so swoon worthy, although I wish Marco hadn’t jerked that other girl around (he name escapes me). I used to be super into Cassandra Clare and all her ships (high school…what can I say?), but Clary/Jace was never one of the ones I loved. Magnus/Alec forever! <3

    I'm the worst but..I haven't finished the Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy! I knoooow I'm awful. *hangs head in shame* It must be done soon. I also own The Bone Season and I've been meaning to read it for ages. Apparently there's an asexual character in the series which I think is really cool, especially since I've not read a single SFF with an asexual character.

    • :) No talking about Jon, got it.

      Yeah, Celia and Marco <3 I loved how they fell in love without Celia even knowing who Marco was! That's some powerful magic right there.

      I haven't finished Clare's series :( I did read that steampunk trilogy, the clockwork books, but I disliked the fact that Tess (Tessa?) couldn't really decide between the two guys.

      Um yeah, the characters in The Bone Season are quite varied when it comes to sexuality, but I forgot all their names and orientations so I'll probably have to re-read before tackling book 2.

  • It’s kind of hilarious how many we have that overlap. Glad to see we are on the same page about this very important topic!

    And you are so right about Paranormal romances – your description of the trope presentations in those made me snort laugh.

    So did you like The Night Circus??? OKay, Fine. I’ll wait for the review.

    • I sense a tiny bit of sarcasm here, Stephanie – do you want to say forbidden love ISN’T a very important topic? But what would we do without it? All the angst, the heartbreak, it would be gone! :)

      I liked the Night Circus but I kind of wish I’d read it in English (I read the Slovenian translation and it was OK but not very good). I liked the slow-burn romance but it was perhaps a tad long, even for a standalone. I also had some problems with the time switches, I couldn’t really keep up with the storyline. I like switching back and forth to get the backstory and all but here the timelines were too similar for me.

  • Lisa (@TenaciousReader)

    Oh! Burrich and Lady Patience! Great choice! And I can not… absolute can not believe that Jon and Ygritte did not occur to me. I thought of a number from that series.

    • :) Burrich is such a wonderful character.

      I saw your list – makes sense you went for Jamie and Cersei! :) It can hardly get more forbidden than incest, after all.

  • Akiva and Karou was at the top of my list. I think that’s why I loved the first book so much. After they threw in the drama and “the big fight” in book 2, it kinda killed things for me.

    ~Mogsy

    • Yeah but she could hardly have written a whole trilogy about how they looked at each other and wished they could touch, could she? :) I did wish the final book was about 200 pages shorter and that one or two storylines were cut completely, though! :D