Cast Of Characters: Villain Turned Love Interests In YA


Belle-and-Adam-beauty-and-the-beast-34638217-1018-1500Adam from Beauty And The Beast


Villain turned love interests are the so-called ‘bad boys’ to a greater, more palpable extent– that is to say, the heroine turns against him at one point in time, though most are adversaries to begin with, at least until she cuddles up to the irresistible charms,  and stays there, snug as a bug in a rug. In which case, she realizes that she can’t be with or without him (it’s an inevitable tragedy, but not really). These beautiful nightmares are usually widely misunderstood, where behind the evil veneer, lies a heart of pure gold.



Try to match each quote to the corresponding VTLI who said it from the examples shown above! I may have removed some of the names so that it won’t be such a giveaway! Also to avoid spoilers 🙂

“I love you. I love you more than any other creature, because you are cruel, and kind, and alive.”

“Your soul sings to mine. My soul is yours, and it always will be, in any world. No matter what happens. I need you to remember that I love you.”

“I want to be the friend you fall hopelessly in love with. The one you take into your arms and into your bed and into the private world you keep trapped in your head.”

“I’ve been waiting for you for a long time. You and I going to change the world.”



Kidding! (but goddamn I miss the innocent Stiles)

Okay, not gonna prevaricate, but I think the notion of a ‘bad boy’ is far too common these days, to the extent that the idea of them feels a little hackneyed, which, much to my detriment, subsequently relinquishes their X factor (you know, that one thing, haha. Mmkay I’ll stop with the One Direction references now). But this quandary applies to me (and/or you) especially, because they recur predominantly in Young Adult books, though the occasional author here or there can make them work with exceptional writing. Villains as love interests, however, are a discrepant matter altogether. For one, it could be that many authors are reluctant to turn the tables, because it’s hard to rationalize the actions of an outward rapscallion, and furthermore, give the heroine an upstanding reason to fall in love with him beyond his strange charms. And if the author lays low on his nefarious reputation, does that make him a believable character?

So there lies the dilemma. I, for one, have a hard time tolerating the fact that someone capable of murder and torment is also perfectly capable of love and kindness, although I’m not going to deny the fact that their frequently impervious, almost inconceivable beauty makes it hard for me to spite them wholly. And whenever the heroine speaks of unfurling an affection for such characters, it always makes me controvert her reason, and to an extent, her sanity, because I myself would never think to love someone who engenders an almost unbearable amount of pain and misery.

But guess what? It happens anyway, and sometimes it even works. I guess my sentiments on the matter depend on how the romance is written— I don’t favor unceremonious changes in character, or villains who cut the heroine slack and antagonize everyone else, or even the sympathetic villains, if they continue to walk the path of destruction. Redeeming value is a must, of course!

So I guess it all depends on the pretext. Sometimes, the heroines just happened to have judged them prematurely, such that they’re more decent and accommodating than what one would expect. But as long as they’re not full-blown, cold-hearted, and insensitive bastards who torture and kill with neither rhyme nor reason, I cling to the hope that they’ll make for befitting love interests, and hopefully spice up the lives of the heroines hopelessly in love with them, but who, in the end, can’t ever help it anyway.

What about you? Do you approve of villain turned love interests in YA? Who are other examples that you know of, and which are your favorites? Do tell me in the comments below 🙂



Authors On ‘Divergent’ and ‘The Grisha’

A few hours ago I decided to look into Entertainment Weekly for a news feature up this week. Successfully enough, I found an article (links below), wherein EW interviews Veronica Roth, author of the Divergent Trilogy, and Leigh Bardugo, author of the Grisha (both of whom are quite young, pretty, successful, and only now did I find out, real life friends). And have I mentioned that Leigh looks so much like Ashley Tisdale? I don’t get it, but that’s what I see.

Source at Entertainment Weekly : Shelf Life

Truth of the matter is, this is the first time I’ve ever really experienced entertainment from Entertainment Weekly. Maybe the problem is that I don’t exactly visit their page weekly, but only now did I chance upon an article that truly fascinated me. Let me tell you more about it. (Author opinions and statements are sourced at EW articles linked below)

Design A

Tris Prior and Alina Starkov

I agree with Leigh that Tris is a believable character. Although she falls short in the category of self confidence (for which she still needs Tobias’ guidance), I think that she’s one of the toughest heroines I’ve ever encountered, and she was really given time to develop and adjust to her new faction. I also agree that Veronica was wise in giving Tris a certain level of vulnerability, because although the mere fact that she was Divergent tells us that she was capable of what many are not, she still had flaws and, according to her landscape, not the least number of fears in the world. For the first time I began to admire her imperfections, because if truth be told, I grew exponentially annoyed by her character in Insurgent. In that way, however, she struggled, and doubted herself, and made mistakes, and she felt human.

Alina, on the other hand, was a character that Veronica appreciated through her solid sense of humor. I have to admit that I haven’t had the pleasure enough to come across numerous heroines who can make me laugh, with the exception of maybe Hazel Lancaster and her sidekick oxygen tank. I have to agree yet again that Alina was funny, although, much like Tris, she made blunders and took unwise steps that hinted at a lack of skill in decision making. In contrast to Tris however, I actually appreciated how she made errors (and learned from them), not requiring the influence of Veronica Roth’s better judgment. That being said, I think it’s safe to say that I prefer Alina’s character over Tris’s, though frankly, I am hoping Allegiant is glorious enough to change my mind.

In other news, Harry Potter producer David Heyman is eyeing Shadow and Bone as a new franchise for the big screen (I also provided you a link to my source for this one). I’d be thrilled for a movie adaptation of The Grisha, although I refuse to get my hopes too high up because my fear landscape indicates a fair distaste for bitterness and disappointment. Being the hopeless fan girl that I am however, I decided to take it upon myself to nominate Analeigh Tipton (right) for Alina’s character- she isn’t exactly pretty at first sight, although at close inspection and from a certain angle, she has an exotic sort of beauty that is so mysterious even I can’t explain it. She is a figure skater slash model turned actress, and though I didn’t exactly get her in Top Model cycle 11, I loved her in Warm Bodies, and because of her Russian features (it’s probably the pout, and the physique), I honestly think she can pull this off. Shailene Woodley (left) was cast to play Tris, as well as Hazel Lancaster in The Fault In Our Stars, opposite Ansel Elgort (center) as Gus, who also stars as Caleb Prior. Guess who stars as Jeanine Matthews, then?

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Design A

Tobias Eaton and Malyen Oretsev

Leigh explained that Mal, Sturmhond, and The Darkling were sexy to her because they were competent, which totally makes sense because I myself am attracted to guys who are talented and admirable as well as good looking (mostly in terms of athletics and brains, though). Four and Mal were a different sort of competent because they fought along side and supported Tris and Alina, and I was happy that, in contrast with many other love struck heroines, the focus wasn’t on their looks, but, as Veronica explained, on what made them tick. Who they were. And that to me, is way more important. Again, I have to give this round to Alina and Mal, because they tolerated and understood each other better, as opposed to Tris and Tobias who quarreled at the most inconvenient of times. I’m still not giving up on them though, and because I haven’t quite gotten around Siege and Storm, I’m not sure if my opinion is open for change any time soon (please tell me what to expect).

Theo James (center)was cast to play Four, and although he looks nothing like the Four in my wildest of imaginations, I’m still quite happy that they picked a talented actor like him. I don’t have anyone particular in mind to play Mal, although I will probably have to pick Colton Haynes (left), because he is practically the most beautiful man alive, and Mal has always been beautiful to me. For some reason, Ian Somerhalder (right) is the only image that’s ever popped up in reference to The Darkling, though I’m getting tired of seeing him on every single billboard along the highway.

Source at Source at www.divergentfans.comsource at


Design A

On What They Expect From Each Other

Leigh revealed that she was hoping for the introduction of a new faction, Torpor, which if I’m not mistaken, is a variant of hibernation. So if I’m interpreting this right, Leigh basically wants a faction that values something like sleep / laziness / slacking off /couch potating (none of which are values, really). The idea made me laugh, which is no surprise because Leigh always does. Veronica, on the other hand, wants to see more Sturmhond action (oh, you know what I mean by actiooon), and I honestly can’t blame her for wanting that.

There are a couple of other things that I didn’t touch on from the interview, because these were the discussions that grabbed my attention. However, if you’re interested in the full articles I referenced in this post, here is a link to Entertainment Weekly’s website!

And if you want to know about the cast for the movie adaptation of Divergent, this is the IMDb profile! If you have any comments, feel free to drop one!

* Images are from Google and will take you to the source when clicked.