On The Insta-Love Trope

insta-love tropeI recently finished reading Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch and while I was really excited for this book I ended up being pretty disappointed! I will talk more about why in my review on Wednesday and limit myself to the insta-love trope, that was, unfortunately, part of Love & Gelato, for today’s post!

Surely we have all read books featuring the insta-love trope before and I’m sure we are all more than just tired of it for multiple reasons. One, for me, is that it is incredibly unrealistic. You don’t fall in love with another person in a matter of days. You might see someone and find them really attractive or you might think the person is giving off a great vibe which makes you want to get to know them better. That, I would be 100% on board with! Give me more of this kind of story!

But falling in love with someone in just a couple of days and wanting to spend the rest of your life with them? That doesn’t sound realistic to me, I’m sorry.

Why do authors feel the need to write this kind of story? Especially in Young Adult literature.

I remember being a teen and thinking I was in love with some boy or another after seeing them a few times (most of the time) but that was nothing other than a crush that might have lasted a few weeks. And if authors wrote about people having crushes often (think Molly in Becky Albertalli’s The Upside Of Unrequited) and then getting to know someone over a longer period of time and then falling for them? That I understand! I feel like the same was the case for Emery Lord’s The Names They Gave Us.

Please show readers that falling in love with someone is more than just thinking they are cute and wanting to be with them immediately – if you are interested in being with someone. Getting into relationships and intimate relationships isn’t something everyone wants – and that should be portrayed too.

When I first read Caraval by Stephanie Garber I didn’t realize how insta-lovey the main relationship was until after, when my brain caught up to the fact that this book was set over the span of just five days. In the moment, I was reading and enjoying the relationship for the most part but once I was done I was looking around myself like ‘Wait.’ and thinking back on it now, I probably wouldn’t enjoy the book as much anymore.


How do you guys feel about the insta-love trope? Are you as tired of it as I am? What is your stance on insta-love versus ‘insta-attraction’? Do you think someone can fall in love with someone in a matter of days? Let’s discuss in the comments!


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13 thoughts on “On The Insta-Love Trope

  1. This was a great discussion. I dislike the insta-love trope too, and I think it’s important for authors to understand that portrayal of insta-love is unhealthy and unrealistic. It can be tackled better as a insta-crush. Firstly, the whole thing with teenagers falling in love and spewing out melodramatic dialogue is far-fetched to me, but ON TOP OF THAT, insta-love is even horrible.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! Give me all the books about people crushing HARD and FAST on someone and then taking the time to get to know that person better! And yes, there probably aren’t many things I dislike more than the melodramatic nature of insta-love couples!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely discussion! I agree with you, I think that insta-love isn’t real and feels a bit unrealistic. I do believe in insta-lust, like, you’re instantly attracted to someone, or can feel a connection to someone instantly: that can happen, yes. But LOVE? Love is much deeper than that and falling in love instantly just isn’t right, it makes me a bit sad it’s so often portrayed. Great post ! 🙂

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    1. Thank you so much, Marie! 🙂

      I think authors should portray the insta-lust more often and show the contrast between that and insta-love – I feel like that might be more fun to read about!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. ugh insta love is the worst!!! it’s not only unrealistic, it makes a bad story. like it’s boring to read about, ya feel me? great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, I definitely feel you! I am also a sucker for a good angsty drawn-out pairing so insta-love definitely isn’t for me!

      Thank you, I’m so happy to hear that you enjoyed the post, Emma!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I definitely agree with everything you said! Insta-love is probably by least favorite trope, it’s the easiest way for a book to be completely ruined, in my opinion. If two characters fall in love super quickly, I won’t be able to feel anything towards the romance, so then it just turns into an annoyance for the majority of the book. It’s rare that I find a romance in YA lit that I truly enjoy!

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  5. I recently talked about this, but YES YES YES I HATE INSTA-LOVE AND IT NEEDS TO GO AWAY. The romance in The Names They Gave Us was SO good and I really enjoyed it! I recently watched Wonder Woman and while the romance was so so cute and I 100% ship it… the whole thing took place over a few days and it seemed like they’d loved each other for years??? (But to be fair I am very damaged from that movie. XD) So yes, I think insta-love is so unrealistic and I don’t know why it keeps popping up in books!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, I definitely liked the romance in The Names They Gave Us so much more because the characters actually got to know each other over the summer and stuff! Same with Simon and Blue and more recently Dimple and Rishi! Like, give me more of that, please!

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  6. This post is so true. I think there’s not much I can add, you’ve covered it very well! I would also love to see people have a crush and days later realize how wrong they were. I only see this happening if the person they had a crush on turns out to be absolutely evil.

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