Literary Swoon: Amy Garvey + Box of Romance giveaway

February 10, 2013 2013, amy garvey, giveaway, guest post, literary swoon, Wendy 63

Welcome to Day Two of our 2013 Literary Swoon series! Every day we’ve asked a YA author we love to tell us: what’s your favorite romantic book scene? We love all the different answers we’ve gotten, and the choices are definitely adding to our TBR lists, too.

Today we’re pleased to welcome author Amy Garvey to the blog. If you’ve read her unusual love story Cold Kiss, you’ll understand exactly why we invited her. This thoughtful, wistful story is an unusual take on the end of a first love, and we were dying to know what Amy herself considers romantic.

Spoiler alert for the scene below!


Amy Garvey’s Favorite Romantic Scene
I imprinted on Little Women by Louisa May Alcott really early on. I had read it over and over again by the time I was twelve, and it set a (often admittedly unrealistic ) standard of perfection for everything from Christmas gifts to tortured artists.

And then there was the romance. Today, there are lots of flirty, sexy, loving scenes in books and movies that have thrilled me, but when it comes to pure romance, nothing beats Amy and Laurie for me. 

Amy’s in Europe, no longer a child, but a graceful young woman with a mind of her own. Laurie’s in Europe, too, getting over his unrequited love for Jo. Meeting as long-time friends, they support each other through heartache of a few different kinds, until they realize that they may have found real love with each other.

For the longest time, I could recite a lot of this scene, even as purple as it is, by heart. They’re rowing together on a quiet lake in Switzerland.

[Amy] rowed as well as she did many other things, and though she used both hands, and Laurie but one, the oars kept time, and the boat went smoothly through the water.

“How well we pull together, don’t we?” said Amy, who objected to silence just then.

“So well that I wish we might always pull in the same boat. Will you, Amy?” very tenderly.

“Yes, Laurie,” very low.

Then they both stopped rowing, and unconsciously added a pretty little tableau of human love and happiness to the dissolving views reflected in the lake.

It’s so simple and so honest, two childhood friends discovering who they are as adults, and who they could be together, it will always be one of my favorites.

About the Author

Amy Garvey is a former editor who now works on the other side of the desk as an author. She grew up reading everything she could get her hands on, watching too much TV, and wishing she was Samantha Stephens from Bewitched. (She still wishes that, actually.) She is the author of Cold Kiss and Glass Heart, and is currently working on her next novel–which has its own share of romantic elements. You can connect with Amy online on her blog, Twitter, and GoodReads.

Photo courtesy of the author. 


Check out the rest of the 2013 Literary Swoon series & win a box of romance! 

Jessica Spotswood
Amy Garvey 
Sarah Rees Brennan
Sarah Fine
Marissa Meyer

A new author will be featured daily until Valentine’s Day, when The Midnight Garden bloggers will share their favorite romantic scenes.

Talk to us about what you think of the romantic choices daily–we’ll choose our favorite comment for each day, and the 6 finalists will be entered into a drawing to receive a box filled with romantic books! The box will includes recent releases featuring love-struck couples.


63 Responses to “Literary Swoon: Amy Garvey + Box of Romance giveaway”

  1. Enbrethiliel


    Louisa May Alcott writes great romantic scenes, doesn’t she? With the exception of John’s proposal to Meg (which is straightforward drama), the proposal scenes also double as allegories for marriage. Here we have Laurie and Amy “pulling together” in the same boat. A little later, we’ll have Professor Bhaer and Jo sharing the same umbrella under the rain. (That one is my favourite, by the way.) There are more in Jo’s Boys that are notable for the imagery; but I think Alcott basically phoned in that final novel, so never mind those now! =P

    PS — I used to be a huge a Laurie-Jo shipper, too! It took me years to like Amy. But now, when I reread the books, I see that Amy is the real rebel of the March family, and not Jo!

  2. Book Blogger Madeleine Moonrise


    I was in a production of Little Women last year and it was an amazing experience. I memorized the whole play (even the parts I wasn’t in) I made my mom take a 30 minute drive to my nearest bookstore so I could buy the book. I must know the book, play and movie by heart as well as the music. That scene is dear to me too. I have to reread it soon. I also like the cover with the scissors, I have never seen that before. I have the Barnes and Noble classics copy.
    Also, I have been dying to read Cold Kiss for the longest time. I love zombies and zombie related stuff. I don’t know why I haven’t yet but I will certainly get on that. I need some zombie love right about now. I was recently hit by 5 feet of snow so I will probably spend by Valentines Day curled up with a book. A bookworm is never alone when she or he has a fantastic book to read. Thank you for these Valentines Day posts, they are really wonderful.

  3. Candace

    I don’t really remember Little Women that well, but the one literary romance I REALLY remember is Anne of Green Gables. I remember being REALLY young and totally swooning over that romance.

  4. Jasprit

    Awww this scene is so adorable, I like how it’s so short but manages to convey such a strong message across. Little Women sounds like such a great read, that I feel so ashamed at having not yet picked up a copy, I remember reading your conversation with several other bloggers about this book the other day and I was so tempted to jump in Wendy, even though I had no clue what you were talking about! Thanks for sharing your favourite romantic scene with us Amy, I will definitely try and pick up this book soon! :)

    • Wendy Darling

      Amy chose the excerpt well–it illustrates the history and feeling between Laurie and Amy beautifully, without saying much at all. It even softened this hardened Jo-Laurie shipper just the tiniest bit. ;)

      And please, you’re welcome to jump in anytime Jasprit! And yes, please do read LITTLE WOMEN–I bet you’d enjoy it.

  5. Maji Bookshelf

    ah….. *puts hand up* I also haven’t read little women.. I have NO IDEA why I haven’t yet! the excerpt looks CUTE. I love these posts because they are giving me recommendations of some older books I passed up on with great romances!

    – Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

    • Wendy Darling

      The book is so sweet, Maji–full of warm feeling and romance, similar to an Anne of Green Gables sort of feel. I’m so glad you’re enjoying this series! We like it for just the same reason.

  6. Shirley

    Awwwwwww the scene’s so sweet! I cannot believe I haven’t read Little Women yet! I did start it…but never finished it :( Looks like I MUST read it ASAP! :)

  7. A Canadian Girl

    I’ve never read Little Women but that is a swoon-worthy scene! And, I like how simple it is. I wonder how the scissors on the cover relate to the book …

    • Wendy Darling

      Simple, swoon-worthy, and sweet. :)

      As for the scissors, the four girls ended pretty much every day sewing with their mother in the evenings. Louisa May Alcott herself apparently helped with the Civil War effort by sewing Union uniforms and badges!

  8. greenduckiesgirl

    Funny, I always loved Jo and the Professor. In fact, I absolutely adore Little Men more than Little Woman. I think I need to reread both of those books again, it’s been years. I really thought Jo needed someone that would challenge her and Laurie just didn’t.

    • Wendy Darling

      I ended up liking Jo and Behr as well. But after spending so much time with her and Laurie, Jo’s adult romance took up so little time in the book that it was still hard for me to deal with! But he was a gentle, beautiful soul–I’d love to read Little Men some day. I never would read it when I was younger because I was so resistant to Jo being with anyone else.

  9. Mary Preston

    LITTLE WOMEN is one of the first books I remember reading. I loved all the different personalities that the girls displayed. Jo was always a favorite, but I love Beth too for her gentle nature. I love the scenes with Jo & Laurie. So much to appreciate & enjoy. A good choice.


    • Wendy Darling

      I loved Beth, too–I actually just left one of my favorite quotes (about her) on my reply to Amy Garvey a few posts above yours. And agreed, the scenes between Jo and Laurie were wonderful–filled with so much spark!

  10. Wyndes

    That was beautiful. I was one of the people who hated when Laurie got involved with Jo (obviously, because I identified with Jo, but also wanted the cute, sweet, rich guy for myself :) so I never saw the romance in that scene, but reading it now, in this way, it was really lovely. I may finally forgive Amy.

    • Wendy Darling

      Hah hah, that’s funny, Wyndes. I admit I have a hard heart when I read LITTLE WOMEN (so hard to get over the awful child that Amy was), but seeing that scene out of context really did make it sound just beautiful.

  11. erin

    OH! Little Women was one of the first books that I read in which I remember fantasizing about their HEA. But I loved Jo and Behr together and thought Laurie and Amy were a perfect fit. That was my first “real” romance I read. After that I remember going to the library and going nuts! :)

    • Wendy Darling

      SAME HERE. It’s also the first book where I realized that things don’t always work out romantically the way you wish, which was just crushing to read as a preteen.

      I liked Behr a lot, too. *sigh*

  12. Paola (A Novel Idea)

    Every time I re-read Little Women, I always find myself wishing for an alternate universe where Laurie and Jo end up together. I just love them. But I like Laurie and Amy together too — there are a lot of reasons why they work out better together. It’s just the hopeless romantic in me that loves Jo & Laurie more!

    • Wendy Darling

      Sign me up for that alternate universe, Paola–I’d much prefer that to the one we’re in! Even if I begrudgingly acknowledge that there might be some small possibility that Amy and Laurie might work out better. A tiny, miniscule, practically microscopic possibility. ;)

  13. Amy

    What a great post!! To be honest, I read Little Women so long ago and I don’t really remember it well. I should re-read it again sometime. I really like that cover. I haven’t seen that one before.

    • Wendy Darling

      I’m totally rereading it soon, Amy. (So many Amys today on this thread, hah.) Look what the Garvey Amy has started!

      And that cover is from the Penguin Classics edition designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith–all beautiful hardbacks with ribbon bookmarks.

  14. Vanilla Moon (Adela)

    Wow, nice choice! Little Women was one of my first reads as a child (even though I only read the Romanian translated edition) and is still on my list of favourite books. My memory of it is not as clear as Amy’s and I don’t remember that particular scene, but… I think I want to reread the book and maybe its sequels (that I only found they existed when I joined Goodreads, as they weren’t translated in my language, thus making them unavailable for me as a child, when I couldn’t possibly have read books in English). Thanks for sharing with us this beautiful scene. I didn’t expect “Little Women” to include anybody’s favourite romance scene, so this was a nice surprise. :)

    • Wendy Darling

      The choice of LITTLE WOMEN was a nice surprise to me too, Adela. And thank you for sharing your memories of reading a translated version as a child! I’m always so curious about what American books are translated/available elsewhere. I’m glad you’ll be able to search out the sequels in English now as an adult. :)

  15. Amy Garvey

    I’m so glad my answer inspired conversation! I never thought twice about it, though — for me, Jo was always destined to love Laurie as the brother she’d never had, so Amy and Laurie made perfect sense to me. I love later on when she’s sitting on his lap and says, “Your nose is such a comfort to me.” Heh.

    Thanks so much for inviting me, Wendy! It was a pleasure.

    • Wendy Darling

      The conversation today has been delightful. Both the scene you highlighted in the post and the one you just mentioned really are wonderful.

      I’ve been meaning to reread LITTLE WOMEN for awhile now, and I think your post has nudged me closer towards that. I have so many favorite scenes from it, but this quote especially always makes my heart hurt:

      There are many Beths in the world, shy and quiet, sitting in corners till needed, and living for others so cheerfully that no one sees the sacrifices till the little cricket on the hearth stops chirping, and the sweet, sunshiny presence vanishes, leaving silence and shadow behind.


  16. Amy Garvey

    I had no idea this would be controversial! I think Jo was so destined, in my mind, to do other things, and love Laurie as the brother she’d never had, that Amy and Laurie made perfect sense to me at that point in their lives.

    I’m glad it inspired some conversation! And thank you, Wendy, for inviting me! It was a pleasure.

    • Wendy Darling

      Hah hah, when you sent this to me, I was shocked by it, Amy–but as you can see, you’re not the only one who loved Amy and Laurie together. My poor sentimental heart could not let go of the idea of Jo and her Teddy, even if I know that there is some justification in why they would not have worked. But only SOME.

      Thanks so much for writing such a lovely post, Amy! We’d be happy to have you anytime. :)

  17. the_bosix

    I have the opposite situation to Livvy, because I`ve never heard of Little Women, so I might as well check it out soon, since you all have read it :D And it sounds really interesting, too.
    But I`ve heard about Cold Kiss and have had it on my shelf for awhile and I guess I really should start reading more actively than before, because I have sooooooo many books that I have to read but haven`t gotten to them yet.

    • Wendy Darling

      Oh, do read both LITTLE WOMEN and COLD KISS, Bosix. They are both wonderful, though admittedly in very different ways, hah. I’m glad we’ve convinced you to add/bump them in your TBR pile!

  18. Tanja - Tanychy

    Oh only few weeks ago we were discussing Little Women on our lit class. I really liked the story and it was the first time for me to read it. I also loved the movie (surprisingly) :)
    Great post :)

  19. Keertana

    Nyooooooooooooooo! I love Jo and Laurie and I just HATE Amy. It took me three tries to get through Little Women because I couldn’t stand that Laurie was with anyone else. I even read the atrocious fanfiction where Laurie cheats on Amy with Jo – I don’t care! I don’t understand how they could possibly be with anyone else. Even when I re-read Little Women, I always stop at the point where Jo is about to reject Laurie. ALWAYS. It’s so traumatic for me. I still haven’t gotten over it. Probably never will. Also the reason I didn’t bother to pick up Jo’s Boys or Little Men. *sigh*

    Still, thanks for sharing! I just had to get my two-pence in there… ;)

    • dreamsofawalrus

      I agree! I don’t remember Little Women very well, but I remember being very upset by this. :< Team Jaurie before teams were a thing. :P

    • dreamsofawalrus

      I agree completely! I don’t remember Little Women very well but I remember being very upset by this. :< Team Jaurie before teams were a thing, woo! *waves little flag*

    • Wendy Darling

      Keertana, we talked about this on Twitter, but you know I agree! Jo and Laurie always, in my mind. Or at least, no Jo and Amy. No, no, no. #huffs

    • Wyndes

      I felt the same way, but Jo’s Boys and Little Men totally got me over it. Jo wound up with the right person for her, and her life makes so much more sense and is so right later on. You should read them!

  20. Livvy

    I’ve not heard of Amy Garvey and her book, so again thanks for highlighting another author I haven’t heard of.

    However, I have heard of Little Women, one of those classics I need to read. I think childhood friendship blossoming to love is infinitely sweet. I really should pick up that book now, it sounds like a great, simple but effective romance that isn’t too over the top.

    Loved this post! :)

    • Wendy Darling

      Ah yes–both those books are published by the wonderful people at Harper Teen, so they should be readily available, Livvy. I hope you enjoy them when you get the chance to read!

      And YES, please do read Little Women. If you’re an L.M. Montgomery fan, the books have a similar feel. Josephine March is a wonderful heroine.

    • Wendy Darling

      Aw, that’s amazing Madeleine! Which part did you play? I know some passages from some books by heart, but nothing to the degree that you’ve described. And the version of the book shown above is the beautiful hardback Penguin Classics edition designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith. The whole collection, which includes Jane Eyre, Austen, Dickens, etc, is gorgeous.

      And you must read Cold Kiss sometime. I’ve discovered I’m a lover of zombie books too, and while that one is very different from your more typical fare, I really liked the contemplative, thoughtful tone.

      Have a lovely Valentine’s Day with all your books! Sounds like a wonderful day to me. ;)

    • Wendy Darling

      Madeline, I just went on your blog and found THREE posts that you cut and paste from our blog. That material needs to be taken down IMMEDIATELY.

    • Wendy Darling

      No, you do not copy and paste anyone’s material in its entirety–EVER.

      I would suggest you read up on plagiarism and copyright infringement before you do anything else online.

    • Wendy Darling

      Madeleine, you can quote a line or two from another place if you link back, but you cannot ever cut and paste entire posts like that, or even reword them to make it appear like they’re your own.

      There has been a lot of plagiarism in the YA community recently (there is a link to my post about it on the sidebar), and it’s a serious problem that this happens, whether it’s accidentally or not.

      I saw that you removed the posts from your blog (and I hope you’ve done so for anyone else whose work you cut and paste as well), and I accept your apology. But please do educate yourself about plagiarism. You can get into a lot of trouble, legally and beyond.

  21. Bookworm1858

    I’ll admit I was one of the people who preferred Jo and Laurie but this and someone else’s post this week is making me reconsider how suitable (or rather unsuitable) they might have been. I need to clear out my reading schedule so that I can give this a reread.

    • Wendy Darling

      Jo and Laurie all the way for me, too–or at least, NO LAURIE AND AMY! I know it may be childish and overly sentimental to cling to that idea so strongly, but I don’t care, hah. I formed such a strong dislike for Amy from the very beginning that I couldn’t get over that, even after she grew up.

      I do agree (reluctantly) that there is something to the theory that Jo and Laurie would not have suited, though. But I can’t help my poor steadfast heart.

  22. rhapsodyinbooks

    I love that quote! It gave me chills reading it again! Which also just goes to show how effective romantic scenes can be without any touching whatsoever! (well, unless after they stopped rowing….)

    • Wendy Darling

      That scene moved even me, and I am violently against the shipping of Laurie and Amy! And I totally agree–writing that is strong can evoke longing and emotion even without detailed descriptions of physical contact. Although, um, there’s nothing wrong with that occasionally, too. ;)

  23. Sam

    Can you believe that I’ve never read Little Women? I love the scene that Amy shared with us, though. I feel like I need to pick this up soon and get to know these characters properly. :) Another great post!

    • Wendy Darling

      Wow, get yourself a copy soon, Sam! It’s a lovely, lovely book. As evidenced by even the short excerpt that Amy provided for us here. :)