Reading has the magical power to draw you into a story and emotionally connect you with the characters and their lives. And then there are romance novels. While your own love life may be lacking, divulging in a good romance lets you live another, experiencing the chase and then the sweet victory that is mutual love.
When (the good) romances come to an end, though, you’re suddenly thrust back into your own, comparatively dull, reality. Withdrawal symptoms include frantically harassing Google for signs of a sequel, giggling to yourself randomly in public, and staring listlessly into space for inappropriate lengths of time.
Here are a few of the best romance novels that we all wish could be our own lives.
1. The Princess Bride by William Goldman
Buttercup is the most beautiful woman in the world. Sounds good already, right? It’s the classic damsel in distress and hero story. Westley travels far and wide and faces a series of trying obstacles to get to Buttercup and save her. Girls love bad boys, and for a major part of the story, Westley is portrayed as one. So if this were your life, you’d get the bad boy who’s not really bad — the best of both worlds.
Sometimes we just want to be taken care of, and I think Westley proves himself sufficiently that he can take care of the woman he loves and do everything within his power to keep her by his side.
2. Avalon High by Meg Cabot
Avalon High is a fantasy that takes place in an alternate universe where the legend of King Arthur is played out in reincarnated high school students. That means the two lovers in the story are destined to be together. A series of dangerous (read: thrilling) events bond the attractive, popular, and good-natured love interest to the main character. It’s a legendary story that could never really happen to you, but would be awesome if it did.
3.The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Not every element in this novel is ideal, but for the most part, it makes for a very exciting life. Trapped in a dystopian society, Katniss and Peeta fight in a ruthless game. There is something strangely romantic in falling in love with someone while your life is in danger.
Peeta would literally sacrifice his life for Katniss and do everything he can to protect her. Don’t we all want a man who would drop everything for you? He is the model of a true sweetheart. Also, if Peeta was your real life beau, you’d get fresh bread everyday (yes!).
4. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
This story, while not exactly happy, portrays a love so strong and so deeply passionate that it is almost impossible not to wish to feel it for yourself. Heathcliff and Cathy can’t be together, and their torment and anguish only strengthens their feelings for each other. The love that they share and their circumstances are something few of us can ever hope to experience. Though their love is tragic, it’s still so overwhelmingly romantic that you can’t help but want to live their story too.
5. Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
Before you click away, hear me out. While some may not love the writing of this novel, there is something to be said about the main love interest. Edward Cullen is a devastatingly good-looking (a trait of his being a vampire) and intelligent guy (a result of being alive for more than a century) who loves Bella so much that he constantly resists his insatiable urge to bite her — meaning he constantly puts her needs in front of his own. There’s a real man.
And there’s just something irresistibly romantic about the fact that he’s a vampire, a fantastical element that we really never could experience in our real life. That’s why Twilight was such a bestseller and that’s why it’s on this list.
6. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
I bet you saw this one coming from a mile away. Always topping every list of “Greatest Love Stories” or “Best Romances,” Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen is a well-loved, timeless love story.
The love interest: Mr. Darcy. Amazingly handsome, tall, educated and unbelievably rich. He lives in a gigantic mansion, and he loves a girl who hates his guts. We all want a man who will change for us, and Mr. Darcy is the epitome of this desire. He’s haughty, proud, and pretentious, because that’s how he’s always lived. But when Elizabeth comes along, Mr. Darcy changes his whole personality and entire set of beliefs in hopes that she can love the man he’s become.
Who wouldn’t want a terribly rich and handsome man to pine after you?
7. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Honorary Mention)
I don’t think most of us would want The Fault in Our Stars to be our own lives, as there can be no happy ending, but the romance in this novel is something that cannot be ignored, which is why this appears as an honorary mention.
The innocent love between two teenagers, made urgent by one’s nearing death, is sweet and tender. The love in this story is a boundless love, a love that knows it’s time to pull out all the stops because any day could be their last. It’s a love that everyone would like to experience, but perhaps with different circumstances.
[quote_center]What book do you wish was your real life?[/quote_center]
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