As I mentioned in a post last week, I’m getting a tad frustrated with characters who fall in love almost instantly. As NC @TrulyBookish said in the comments: “I can understand seeing a person and becoming attracted to them but falling so in love that after two days of knowing the person you would give up your whole life for them is getting old.”
I think that’s my real beef with “insta-love.” It’s not just that the characters fall in love so quickly- it’s also that they make life-altering decisions that affect the rest of their lives. I mean, I guess that’s sort of part of the romance, but still…
Thinking about all of this brought me to a couple of relevant questions: How long does it typically take people in real life to fall in love? How long should it take book characters?
For me, I knew within one month of dating my then boyfriend (now husband) that we were meant to be together forever. I didn’t tell very many people that because…well, that’s sort of crazy! Although we knew early on that we were a perfect match, we didn’t act on that right away.
That’s probably the most important part – we dated. For a long time. Like 4 and a half years. We were in college, so it was probably an unusual length of time to date before getting married, but I didn’t want to get married while I was still in school. I think the average amount of time is closer to 10 months to 1 year and a half.
As for book characters, I would just like to see a gradual build-up of romance. Time in books can be confusing, so it doesn’t have to be a year, but how about longer than…let’s say….10 seconds after seeing the other person for the first time!! Is that too much to ask?
Books that have had a great romantic build-up are:
How long should it take book characters to fall in love? What books have you read that showed a gradual romance?