Hi everyone! I hope you’ve all had a good weekend, mine was pretty cool, I got to go and see Mamma Mia with my friend Ellie on Saturday, it was so much fun! However this week I’ve had to start packing to go back to Uni, so not so much fun, as I loathe packing! Anyway, it’s Tuesday, which means another Top Ten Tuesday prompt and this week, the lovely ladies from the Broke and The Bookish have rejoined us, with official prompts once again, can I get a hooray? The first prompt of their return is Top Ten Recommendations For X. I’ll be honest, I was struggling to decide what to fill X with because I always do Fantasy and end up recommending the same ten books, I wanted to do something different this time, so I’ve decided to do Top Ten Recommendations For Those Who Like Books Without Romance. This might be a tricky one to do, but as a reader who frequently grows weary of the fact that every YA book has to have romance in it, I feel like I should share some of the gems I’ve found that show you don’t have to have romance to be a good YA book. So here we go:
- Code Name Verity-Elizabeth Wein
If you like female friendship and women generally being awesome, then Maddie and Verity’s story is definitely the one for you. It has female pilots, female spies, an unreliable narrator and absolutely not even a whiff of romance.
2. This Savage Song-Victoria Schwab
Whilst not my favourite of Schwab’s books, this story about humans and monsters and the blurred lines between the two is still pretty darn engaging, and the main characters are a boy and a girl with a platonic friendship. Platonic male/female friendships people! It can be done!
3. Challenger Deep-Neal Shusterman
This is a beautiful, heartbreaking story about mental illness, and the book is entirely focused on Caden and his journey, there’s no romance angle because the book simply doesn’t need it.
4. The Book Thief-Markus Zusak
Sure, there are inklings of first love between Liesel and Rudy, but they’re pretty tame and honestly the book is more about family and war and friendship and death than it is about romance!
5. Magnus Chase and The Sword of Summer-Rick Riordan
The second book dives a little bit more into the romance plotline, but this book is all about the action, there is no love interest for Magnus, he is simply trying to stop the end of the world with his best friends, one of whom is a girl and they have a totally platonic relationship and it’s awesome and can we have more of this please?
6. A Darker Shade of Magic-VE Schwab
The second and third books in the trilogy do delve deeper into the romantic storyline (which I actually liked because it was done well and the characters have a real connection. I feel like I rant about romance so much that people don’t know that I actually do like it when it’s done well, I just don’t think it’s always necessary), but this first book, has no real discernible romance to speak of, Kell and Lila are just friends, there is the occasional kiss but it doesn’t go further than that, it’s all about the action!
7. Skulduggery Pleasant-Derek Landy
There is romance later on in the series (isn’t that always the way?) but in this first book, Valkyrie is 12, and just diving into the world of magic, so it’s all about her and Skulduggery’s friendship and her discovering magic and learning to be a detective and no romance to be seen! In fact the entire series is pretty light on the romance in general, it’s only really in the later books that there is any kind of romance and even then it’s pretty light, so if you’re someone who prefers action and magic and friendship to romance, I would definitely recommend this series.
8. Artemis Fowl-Eoin Colfer
I think there might be a smidge of romance or at least hints towards it in the later books, but that was around books 6-8 in the series and really isn’t that prominent at all, in the first book and for most of the series, there is no romance whatsoever, it’s all about Artemis being a criminal mastermind and him and Holly Short working together to bring down the bad guys, in a platonic relationship, she actually kind of hates him at first (which is fair enough since he kidnaps her in the first book). If you like books with criminal masterminds, antiheroes who redeem themselves, and all variety of magical creatures and basically no romance, then this series is definitely one for you.
9. Asking For It-Louise O’Neill
No romance whatsoever in this one cause you know, RAPE IS NOT ROMANTIC PEOPLE (I get very tired of non consensual sex being portrayed as romantic as you can probably tell). It’s a very important story about consent and slut shaming and sexism and rape culture and I think it’s a book that all teenage girls (and boys too) should read.
10. A Series of Unfortunate Events-Lemony Snicket
It’s been a long time since I’ve read these books, so I can’t remember if there might have been some hints of romance towards the end of the series, but for the most part, the Baudelaire kids are far too busy evading Count Olaf, trying not to die and getting into one scrape after another to have any degree of romance.
That’s all I have for this week, it was hard to even come up with ten books that had little or no romance in them! Have you read any of these books? What are your favourite books with little to no romance in them? Let me know in the comments!
I will have a new TTT for you guys next week, as Broke and The Bookish are back to their regularly scheduled topics, no more scrambling to come up with topics, yay! Next week is a Back To School Freebie, so you’ll have to wait and see what Back To School related topic I choose! In the meantime, I have a discussion post that I’m hoping to get up at some point this week, so stay tuned for that.