Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Top Ten Tuesday: My favourite book relationships that don't involve shirtless hugging

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature hosted by the fabulous Jana at The Artsy Reader Girl. You can join in with future topics here!

Whilst I adore the spark, the thrill, the excitement of those amazing crushes that develop into relationships - the first kiss! The longing! There's also something wonderful about the relationships that develop between friends and family. Here are ten of my favourite relationships in fiction that involve no pining/sexytimes/swooning whatsoever.

Finn & Puck
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

The first of several sibling pairings that make this list, I love Finn and Puck so much. I love the entirety of this book to be honest, but I love the strange little family unit that these two have made for themselves. The little moments of kindness (hot chocolate making: “You made this?' Finn looks at me. 'No, Saint Anthony brought it to me in the night. He was very put out I didn't give it to you right then.” ) the unity (dragging a mattress in to sleep in the same room) and the sass. I love them.

Harry & Hermione
The Harry Potter series by J K Rowling
I love the friendship between these two. I love that there's never any consideration of it being anything other than friendship. I love how they support each other, become like family to each other (with Ron, obviously, but there's definitely some romantic feelings on one pairing here) and become their own little unit - never so obvious as when it's just the two of them horcrux hunting. I adore the friendship between Harry and Ron as well, but pairings of a guy and a girl where there's no romance to speak of is super refreshing so I wanted to focus on this side of the triangle.

Aelin & Lysandra
The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J Maas

These two may as well be renamed Sassy and SassyPants. I love their friendship, I love the snark, the sass, the utter ridiculousness of some of their conversations. There are too few female friendships, and I love that this one is born out of hatred and rivalry as the two actually get to know each other and work out that they don't have to tear each other down to be awesome individuals.

Beck & Joey
A Thousand Perfect Notes by C G Drews
In this completely broken family unit Beck and Joey cling to each other with startling ferocity. I love how bright Joey burns. How fierce and angry she is. I love how Beck tries desperately to protect and look after her. They are such an odd pair, but I adore them.

Julia & Portia

The Lady Julia Grey mysteries by Deanna Raybourn
I love these sisters. They snark and snipe at each other, but at the heart of it all they love each other. They are there for each other, supporting them when needed. It's a wonderful sibling relationship, and my favourite pairing of sisters in fiction.
“No, Julia, you need adventure. You need a lover, a holiday abroad. You need to cut your hair and swim naked in a river. You need to eat things you have never even seen before and speak languages you do not know. You need to kiss a man who makes you feel like your knees have turned to water and makes your heart feel as though it would spring from your chest.”

Blue & Ronan
The Raven Cycle quartet by Maggie Stiefvater
The snark between these two. There's never even a whiff of romance, although they both love each other it is entirely platonic. Plus I love the way they bounce off each other.
“It was amazing that she and Ronan didn’t get along better, because they were different brands of the same impossible stuff.”

Raf & Katsa
Graceling by Kristin Cashore
As close as siblings, we are given a criminally tiny amount of time where Raffin and Katsa are together, but they more than make up for it when they are.
“Sit, Your High Majestic Lord Princes," she said. She yanked a chair from the table and sat herself down.
"You're in fine temper," Raffin said."Your hair is blue," Katsa snapped back.”

Inej & Nina
The Six of Crows Duology by Leah Bardugo

Another instance of the ladies in a group deciding to stick together and help and support each other instead of tearing each other down. I think we're hitting a new phase in fiction where we do get refreshing supportive relationships instead of ladies always having to compete. In a group of guys, the friendship and love between these two sassy waffle eating ladies is fantastic.

Alan & Nick
The Demon trilogy by Sarah Rees Brennan

Oh these two. My heart breaks for them. I adore them. I adore their twisty complicated relationship. The love and heart break and convoluted history between them.
“The cut in Nick's arm was starting to throb dully with the pressure he was putting on it. He kept looking at Alan. 'How many times have you lied to me?' he asked in a soft voice.
Alan replied, equally softly, 'I've lost count.”

Sarah Rees Brennan is insanely talented at crafting real characters who are multifaceted shades of grey, and that is never more evident than with these two brothers.

Alanna & Myles
The Song of the Lioness Quartet by Tamora Pierce
The relationship that builds between these two over the four books is beautiful. They're two slightly lost souls who develop a wonderful friendship, at first with Myles as 'Alan's' mentor, and later as more of a father figure to Alanna. It's something I haven't come across often in young adult fiction, so it was really wonderful to see their relationship evolve over time.
“Myles hugged her tightly, taking care not to bump her wounded arm. “You’re a good lad, Alan of Trebond,” he whispered. “You give an old man hope.” “Nonsense,” Alanna growled, pleased and embarrassed by the unexpected praise. “You aren’t that old. And I’m not that good a lad.”

So there you have ten of my favourite non-romantic pairings! Talk to me about some of yours!


  1. A fun list! And yet another reminder that I have yet to read Tamora Pierce! Thank you.

  2. The Scorpio Races is such a great book! I love Aelin and Lysandra's friendship as well!

  3. Haha, best post title ever! Someday I’ll read The Scorpio Races. Sometimes I feel like the only person who hasn’t read it.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!