Welcome to Day Three of our 2013 Literary Swoon series! We are celebrating Valentine’s Day here at The Midnight Garden by asking our favorite YA authors what they consider to be their most romantic scene.
Today, we welcome Sarah Rees Brennan, author of the paranormal romance/gothic mystery Unspoken. Being the writer of one of the most refreshing and charming romances to come in YA in the past year (or ever), we are more than excited to share with you Sarah’s own personal picks. Yes, picks! Sarah chose not just one, but two romantic scenes. We understand the dilemma. So, without further ado…
Beware: spoilers ahead.
Sarah’s Favorite Romantic Scenes
LOVE IS A MANY WEIRDOS THING
I could not pick just one romance. So I picked two. Things always go in twos, right?
This is the third book in a series, The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner. I do not want to spoil you any more than I absolutely have to, but the king and queen are married, the country hates him because they think he forced/conned her into it, the king is short, younger than the queen, shifty and unsoldierly in the country’s view, and the queen is tall, forbidding and murderous. The king is personally afraid of the queen, with good reason. So the king is in a vulnerable situation, and yet is lippy with the queen as is his sassy way, and then THE QUEEN DOES THIS.
She said, “I love your eyes.” She kissed him on either cheek, near the small lobe of his ear. “I love your ears, and I love”—she paused as she kissed him gently on the lips—“every single one of your ridiculous lies.”
Isn’t it great? Just turns everything else about the situation around: makes the narrator, who isn’t either one of them, feel like the world tumbled around his ears.
* * * * *
I also really love Margaret Mahy’s The Changeover, which is a book about a young lady claiming her magical powers, and a boy who has them but shouldn’t (boys aren’t meant to be witches).
HEROINE: I’m in the BEDROOM of an ooolder man and he is wearing a black silk dressing gown like a teenage Hugh Hefner.
HERO: What did you COME here for, Laura?
HEROINE: Sorry, Sorry. (The hero’s name is Sorry and it is embarrassing for everyone.) If I, ah–HE’S COMING CLOSER!–disturbed you?
HERO: NOT AT ALL.
HEROINE: Time for the… romantic kiss!
HERO: *boob grab*
HEROINE: OMG WTF BOUNDARIES! TEENAGE BOYS ARE TERRIBLE!
He also kisses her clumsily in front of his mum. He is basically a human disaster, and she is awesome, self-possessed and in charge, but very young and very distrait about other things (magical threat to little brother et cetera). They have to navigate a relationship and it’s so unromantic it’s comes all the way back around to romantic: they both try so hard, and genuinely care for each other.
As you can perhaps see, I have an UNTRADITIONAL taste in romance. But I think the crux of it for me is: surprise me, have characters I believe surprise each other, have them communicate and care for each other, let me see how they become unique to each other.
And I will fall in love, too.
About the Author
Sarah Rees Brennan is the author of The Demon Lexicon trilogy and with fellow writer Justine Larbalestier, the co-author of Team Human. Unspoken, the first book of her latest series was released in September 2012. (Read our review here!) The highly anticipated sequel, Untold, is set to be published in August 2013.
Photograph courtesy of the author.
Check out the rest of the Literary Swoon series & win a box of romance!
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 every day on each post, 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.