Top Ten Tuesdays is hosted weekly by The Broke and Bookish and anyone is free to participate! This week’s subject is top ten books I wish had more X in them. I’m choosing books I wish had more philia. And by philia I mean the platonic kind of love. In no particular order, let’s get started!
- To All The Boys I Loved Before by Jenny Han
Lara Jean is not someone I easily relate to in some ways. But one thing I did recognize is that neither of us had strong female friendships in high school. Lara Jean is very close to her sisters, which is wonderful (I’m rather close to my sister), but she spends most of the book fighting with her oldest sister. She spends the large majority of the book interacting with Josh and Peter.
- Six of Crows/Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
I bet you didn’t think this one would be on here since Nina and Inej exhibit such a strong philia(?) love towards each other. But I would love to see more of that. I really want to read a book about Inej and Nina fighting sex traffickers and being badass on Inej’s ship. I will wait forever and the rest of the world to read that book.
- Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
I really LOVE Cath. I love her arc and I love how she stays true to herself while also growing as a person and a character. But the large majority of the book is spent with Levi, and while Levi is the most perfect cinnamon roll, he’s not a substitute for friendship. I would have loved to see more Regan and Cath.
- Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
I think there were some real potential to develop philia love between Anna and other characters, but they were pushed to the side for romance *le sigh* I think there was real potential for Anna becoming VERY close with, oh her roommate maybe? And developing a strong bond. I’ve lived abroad, I know what it’s like to try to adapt to a new culture; it can be hard, messy and trying. I still liked the book buttttt
- Caraval by Stephanie Garber
I really enjoyed the relationship Scarlett and Tella because I feel like so few YA books explore the relationship between sisters/siblings fully. I felt like Caraval had the potential to do this because Tell and Scarlett seemed to rely on each other so much. I wish we could have seen more of their relationship. In the end I felt like it fell a little flat.
- Passenger by Alexandra Bracken
This was another book I really loved, and I liked the twist at the end where Sophia took matters into her own hand and tried to change her fate, but I also felt like it was a real missed opportunity for Sophia to have a “redemption” arc and to form a strong relationship with Etta. We already have Ironwood as a villain, why add another?
- Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Honestly, I just felt like Alina and Mal were more friend material than a romantic interest relationship. I might be slightly biased because I hate Mal to the tune of one amplifier (as Alina’s love interest [which might possibly be related to my desire to ship Nikolai and Alina with the passion of all three amplifiers]). All my hate aside, Alina and Mal have been together ever since they were kids and they protected each other and drew on each other for strength when they were children. I just think their relationship had the potential for so much more than romantic love.
- Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton
Obviously all these characters could benefit from a little more philia in their lives, but I’m specifically talking about Will and Alec. They’re supposed to be best friends, but we don’t really have any kind of peek into what they’re relationship looks like beyond seeing little gestures against the backdrop of essential scenes. And I know we never read from their perspective and there’s little hints, but I think there was so much potential there as a friendship and really developing philia between those two.
That’s it for now, sorry I don’t have 10 but let me know which characters you would like to see more philia in their lives!