I’m not sure about you guys, but speaking in broad terms I find that most male love interests for female main characters fall into two categories: the cold, distant but hot jerk or the goofy best friend who’s always stuck by the MC. Of course this is a huge generalization, but it really does seem to happen a lot in YA today, especially when it comes to my nemesis the love triangle.
Generalizations aside, what I want to talk about is this: what makes a good male love interest in YA? (We’ll talk about female love interests later this month.) Do you have a favourite love interest? Why is he your favourite?
Personally, my current favourite is Po from Graceling. He’s not a distant jerk but neither is he the goofy best friend either. No, he’s a mature young man that doesn’t play around when he realizes that his love for Katsa is mutual. Throughout the story he protects Katsa while realizing that she can also protect herself, decides what he wants out of life and treats Katsa like an equal partner in their relationship. What a novel idea!