Books to Fall in Love With

Milla Jans, Photojournalist

Herman Melville quoted that “Eyes are the gateway to the soul,” and it has been scientifically proven that prolonged eye contact with someone can increase feelings of affection. This may not be the case for everyone, but many people can say that they have found a book that has made them feel like falling in love. Love has been a part of many works of writing that have gone down in history, including Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, and Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights.

Although love is something known to be exciting, as if it’s a leap into the deep end of a pool, it can also be dangerous, like river rafting towards the end of a waterfall. Young adult books, such as The Song of Achilles and The Sun is Also a Star, seem to make the fictional characters’ love burst out of the pages and into the reader’s own heart.

Madeline Miller brings a bit of a modern twist to the Greek classic, The Iliad, in her award-winning novel, The Song of Achilles. Miller paints a picture from the view of Patroclus, the companion of Achilles. The book tells the story of this young and innocent prince that becomes exiled from his kingdom after committing a crime. This one event pulls Patroclus and Achilles’ lives together to create a relationship that is bound to see both darkness and light. 

Once Patroclus and Achilles meet, they become inseparable. Even through war, they battle to be with each other and do not have peace without one another. They are almost never apart, and their love makes the writing all the more heart-wrenching and beautiful. 

The Song of Achilles is an enjoyable read for anyone with an interest in Greek mythology and queer love. Madeline Miller does an exceptional job of describing and differentiating each of the character’s unique personalities. Though the end of the book becomes clearly inevitable, the events leading up to the end make it difficult to stop reading. 

Miller’s finale of the novel wraps up with a melodic quote, “In the darkness, two shadows, reaching through the hopeless, heavy dusk. Their hands meet, and light spills in a flood like a hundred golden urns pouring out of the sun” (Miller 369). 

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon is another story of two souls fated to fall in love. One of the characters, Natasha, denies the concept of fate and “meant to be,” while Daniel believes that everything happens for a reason. They are both reaching for something so far up that they end up falling, and “The thing about falling is you don’t have any control on your way down” (Yoon 193). 

Most love in books wrap around the story and plot to make the story make sense, but is usually unrealistic”

— Ethan Huynh (9)

One unique aspect of this book is the various perspectives that the chapters offer. Although the main perspectives are Natasha’s and Daniel’s, there are many other third-person chapters about a certain topic or person. A few examples include Daniel’s brother, a security guard, and Natasha’s father. 

Each one of their lives intertwines with the main characters’ lives in some simple way, which gives the reader the realization or reminder that every person can see events happen a little differently.

Natasha and Daniel fall in love with each other within a day, and even as a fictional story, the book shows that love is something as monumental as time. Ethan Huynh (9) states that “Most love in books wrap around the story and plot to make the story make sense, but is usually unrealistic.” This is the case for many novels, but it makes the plot a little more interesting than one without. 

The universe is so vast that it seems like reading these books would be insignificant compared to it, but doing so could change the reader’s, and maybe even the world’s, views about love.