Top Ten Tuesdays Freebie: Elements to a YA Novel


Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted at The Broke And The Bookish.

My list is about the top ten things that make me want to pick up a book and read it! Though it is not a Tuesday anymore, especially in the Philippines… well here ya go anyway!

1. Strong Heroines

I honestly have no preference in terms of the gender of the main protagonist. Hero or heroine works well with me, but I like my heroines strong, rational, and likable, above all. It’s a huge pet peeve of mine when the heroine resolves her issues by whining or holing up in her room, crying her problems away (which, last I checked, is awfully ineffective). C’mon, girls. We don’t have to depend on our knights in shining armor all the time, especially when they’re not feeling very knightly at the moment. Books with heroines who can kick ass? Insta-love. Most of the time.

Example: Katsa in Graceling by Kristin Cashore


2. Epic Love Triangles

With obvious emphasis on the “epic”. I know, I know. I’m heartless, cause love triangles usually end up in heart break one way or another. Additionally, love triangles are everywhere, and I should definitely be sick and tired of them right now. I don’t know about you though, but I think the resolve to this particular denouement is one of the most exciting and vexatious outcomes to look forward to in any young adult book. It must be because I’m a romantic by default (or not), but either way, I’m still really impressed by how authors manage to pull these off.

Example: Jem, Will and Tessa in Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Princess

3. Characters for Comic Relief

I don’t know why, but I can’t really appreciate novels with overly maudlin story lines. I know that some of them are really meant to pull at your heart strings, depress you, and open your eyes to the harsh realities of life, but it really bothers me when there is little else. Characters that provide comic relief definitely lighten the load, and more often than not, they evolve to becoming my favorites. I have this thing for funny guys who can come up with witty comebacks- a great sense of humor is, to me, a plus point to a character’s appeal.

Example: Leo in The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan

The Lost Hero

4. Dystopian Societies

I know this has become a huge trend for authors who want to create a world that doesn’t exactly abide by the laws of man and nature present in a contemporary setting. It’s kind of funny that I love dystopian novels because I usually end up scorning anything that has been in the loop for too long (creating a train as opposed to a bandwagon). However, I’m really fascinated by the different types of environment in the various novels, the significant problems they pose as well as the opportunities they provide for the characters to grow and develop.

Example: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Hunger Games

5. Great Covers

Unless you happen to live like Patrick Star (you’d be practically out of reach because one, you’re underwater, and two, there is a huge slab of rock wedged in between you and the real world), you should know by know that there is a saying that goes “Don’t judge a book by its cover”. But I can’t help it! The urge is just so strong, to pick up a book simply because the cover is stunning. And I’m not sure if the same goes for most, but the best books I’ve read have amazing ones.

Example: Across The Universe by Beth Revis

Across The universe

6. Multiple POVs

This doesn’t necessarily mean that the book has to be written in first person. I’m a sucker for books that give me various points of view to a single scenario, because they increase my comprehension of the story, and I love how i can better understand the characters and connect with them if I see things the way they do. Though there are some amazing books that focus on specific characters to preserve the mystique of the others, I do have a knack for he said/she said books that alternate view points.

Example: Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn

Dash and Lily

7. Supernatural Beings 

This is mainly because I am obsessed with fantasy books. This isn’t to say that I can’t appreciate realistic fiction, but I just love books that are creative and can stir the imagination. These types of books usually include supernatural beings- vampires, werewolves, warlocks, angels, demons, fairies, the like. I usually find myself fascinated with the way they are incorporated into the story line, the powers they possess, and the way they communicate (and even breed, haha) with humans. As long as they don’t sparkle like certain vampires, or have names that start with E and end in Dward Cullen, I think I’m good.

Example: Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

Vampire Academy

8. Forbidden Love

Yes I’m cheesy. I don’t know why, but William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet moved me in such a way that I didn’t care for the tragic conclusion. I’m not a huge fan of sad endings that leave me in a pool of tears, especially ones involving ritual suicide, but after reading that classic, I had a newfound appreciation for books that find ways to make relationships work even when they shouldn’t.

Example: Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma


9. Gorgeous Love Interests

I know that perfect guys with beautiful hair, blinding smiles, ripped physiques and adorable intellect are probably the least relatable characters in the world, but I still have a weakness for them. It’s probably because I can picture myself as the main character meeting the particular hunk, and more often than not, they’re not half bad.

Example: Patch in Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

Hush Hush

10. Happy [Enough] Endings

Except in special cases wherein the author is so great (and most likely dead) that he or she for example, has a statue erected in his memory, I really can’t seem to appreciate novels with sad endings. In my opinion, the ending is the most important element, because all events in between lead up to that particular moment. And if the characters are doomed to live miserable, hopeless lives, then why must we even go through the journey with them just to get there in the first place? If the ending is gonna leave me in tears, at least give the main character compensation for the loss. Or please just make it happy.

Don’t wanna spoil the ending to any book, so maybe you can fill out your own example! Leave a comment for any opinions.


2 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesdays Freebie: Elements to a YA Novel

  1. I love how you have examples for each of them. I especially agree about the strong heroines. I love Katsa 🙂

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