Tag Archives: romantic couples

I Hate Love Triangles

I hate love triangles. Stephanie Plum bounces between Joe and Ranger when she should pick one (Joe…I know some people will disagree). I don’t get the whole Team Jacob vs Edward when clearly it was Edward all the way. (Jacob was self-centered and mean spirited).

In my Pollyanna world, I like love at first sight that never goes away even if time or circumstance keeps them apart (i.e. Persuasion or my own Deadly Valentine). Some might argue that I have a love triangle between Tess, Jack and Daniel, but no. Daniel never stood a chance even without Jack coming back into her life.

I always wonder about authors that have love triangles, particularly with two seemingly perfect men that the female bounces between (literally and figuratively). Is that to make it seem more like real life? Is it to keep the tension up and the reader guessing? To me, it makes her wishy washy. Pick a guy already!

I know my view is fairy tale-ish. It’s an ongoing joke in my writer group. So much so that some writers warn me if the love is going to go bad. I don’t mind angst. In fact, I kind of enjoy it, as long as everything turns out in the end. While many make fun of this quirk of mine, I’ve decided not to apologize for it. Why not have have a couple who are devoted, respectful, loving and passionate? Because it’s not real? Vampires aren’t real, either. Neither is a boy living on a life raft with a hungry tiger. But that doesn’t stop people from enjoying paranormal stories or “The Life of Pi.”

Maybe I could start a club. The “I hate love triangles” Club. I wonder if anyone else would join?

Follow Jenna Harte:

Great Romantic Couples – Jonathan and Jennifer Hart

Back in January, I wrote about Nick and Nora Charles of The Thin Man in the Great Romantic Couple series. My next great romantic couple is Jonathan and Jennifer Hart, who were an 80’s version of Nick and Nora. Jonathan and Jennifer were the main characters of Hart To Hart, which ran from 1979 to 1984 as a weekly TV series. When the show was unexpectedly cancelled, the stars, Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers, continued to work together in the play Love Letters and were able to eventually re-invent Hart to Hart as a two-hour movie series in the 1990’s. After eight movies, the Harts were finally retired from TV, but not from the hearts of its fans who continue to talk about, write fan fiction and share DVDs created from home-made VHS recordings of the show (only seasons one and two and movies are for sale on DVD ).

The Harts depict the happily ever after die-hard romantics love. They are rich, beautiful and deeply in love.  The actors have said in interviews that there were attempts by writers to create angst in the marriage with roving eyes and infidelity, but both were adamant that the Harts were 100 percent committed to each other. Thank goodness because that is what made the Harts a great romantic couple. Jonathan never questioned Jennifer when it appeared she’d become a thief. Jennifer never question Jonathan’s fidelity when evidence suggested he might be having an affair…twice. That’s the kind of love, trust and commitment true romantics love.

Like their predecessors Nick and Nora, the Harts also were a fun couple who bantered and played. Oh, and they also solved crime, although any die-hard Hart fans will tell you that the plots were less important than watching the relationship. The Harts had the perfect relationship, so it’s no surprise that they won in my survey of favorite romantic couples (as of 2/26/13).

If you’ve never seen the Harts, but are a die-hard romantic, it’s worth checking out the show. Season one in particular had the banter and fun reminiscent of The Thin Man. But all seasons have their share of love, romance and mayhem.

Follow Jenna Harte:

Who make up your favorite romantic couple?

Are you a hopeless romantic like I am? Both the Valentine and Delecoeur books are the types of couples I love to read about or watch on TV or in movies. Sexy, smart, fun and 100 percent committed is what I love in romantic couples.

Below are 15 fictional romantic couples from literature, movies and television. It’s a small sampling of old and new from Rhett and Scarlett to Edward and Bella. Not all of them meet my criteria, but are still considered by many to be great romantic couples (i.e. Rhett and Scarlett aren’t together at the end of the book). Are any of them your favorite? Or if your favorite couple isn’t listed, add it.

Follow Jenna Harte:

Anne Elliot and Capt. Wentworth – Great Romantic Couples

Most people who think Jane Austen think Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility, but for me Persuasion is the book that tops the list. The last book published while Austen was alive, it’s often referred to as the mature Pride and Prejudice. The story is about Anne Elliott who’s family has connections, but unfortunately, her father and older sister have squandered their money. Seven years earlier, she fell in love with Frederick Wentworth, a man with no money or connections, but who had goals and good character. They’d planned to marry until a family friend persuaded her to break the engagement.

Now, seven years later. Anne and her family have to move to cheaper accommodations and rent their estate to Admiral Croft, who coincidentally is married to Frederick’s sister. By this time, Anne is 27 and losing her “bloom”. Frederick is now a captain in the navy and is wealthy. He visits his sister, where he and Anne are reacquainted; however, he acts indifferent to her, as if she were only a past acquaintance. Rubbing salt into Anne’s wound, he openly courts another young woman. Eventually, of course, the two reconcile. The standout scene is when Anne is speaking to a friend of Wentworth’s talking about how men forget the women they love sooner than women forget men. Overhearing this, Wentworth writes Anne a letter that is guaranteed to make you swoon.

“I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant. You alone have brought me to Bath. For you alone, I think and plan. Have you not seen this? Can you fail to have understood my wishes? I had not waited even these ten days, could I have read your feelings, as I think you must have penetrated mine. I can hardly write. I am every instant hearing something which overpowers me. You sink your voice, but I can distinguish the tones of that voice when they would be lost on others. Too good, too excellent creature! You do us justice, indeed. You do believe that there is true attachment and constancy among men. Believe it to be most fervent, most undeviating, in

F. W.

I must go, uncertain of my fate; but I shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look, will be enough to decide whether I enter your father’s house this evening or never. “

Chasing him down, Anne and Frederick reconcile.

Aside from this letter, what makes this story so wonderful is the subtle way Austen shows us they love each other still, even though it’s not obvious to them. Wentworth, once angry that Anne could be persuaded to leave him, learns of her strength and loyalty. Anne, who thinks she’s lost all hope of finding true love, learns to do what is right in her heart, not what’s right for her family. What I really love is that idea that they never stopped loving each other, even when all hope of being together was lost.

There have been several movies made of Persuasion, but my all time favorite is with Ciarán Hinds and Amanda Root. They do such a fabulous job of showing the viewer their love and longing, while hiding their feelings. Here is a video that shows highlights and the gist of story from clips from this movie version. I highly recommend seeing the movie Persuasion and/or reading the book if you like Jane Austen.

Follow Jenna Harte:

Great Romantic Couples – Nick and Nora Charles

When you think of romantic couples, you probably think of Elizabeth and Darcy or Cleopatra and Anthony. I agree that they are romantic couples, but along with the romantic words — “You pierce my soul,” Capt. Wentworth in Jane Austen’s Persuasion — is the everyday banter that comes between couples once they start their ‘happily ever after’. That’s what I love about Nick and Nora Charles. They come from opposite worlds and yet click so well together. I wonder what their courtship was like. Did they struggle like a typical romance couple…she the rich heiress and he the blue-collar gumshoe who come from different backgrounds? Or was it chemistry when they met and neither cared about the differences? I like to think it was the latter. I can’t imagine Nick worrying too much about what Nora’s family would think of him.

I love how Nora can keep up with Nick on the quips and while they tease each other, you can tell they love and respect each other. And then there is the humor. I like angst as much as the next reader, but I love quirky characters, funny situations, and engaging banter.

If you’re not familiar with Nick and Nora, you can read The Thin Manby Dashiell Hammett, but theThe Thin Man movies are my favorite starring William Powell and Myrna Loy.

Follow Jenna Harte: