1) The heroine must be romantically drawn -- or emotionally tied -- to each guy equally, and for completely different reasons. If not, you have something more like true love and a third wheel.
2) The love triangle has to be true to the characters and the story.
3) By the end of the story, the heroine needs to make her choice and live with the consequences. I don't count it as resolved if a) one of the guys gets killed off or b) I'm told that one of the guys is actually a terrible person who has, for instance, been secretly cheating on the heroine.
And here's my list of Five YA Love Triangles That Really Work.
I may not know how all these turn out -- so please, no spoilers!
5. Logan-Aura-Zach from the Shade trilogy by Jeri Smith-Ready.
Poor Aura. This is not a spoiler, but her boyfriend Logan dies right off. So you'd think that this breaks my rule #3 about killing off one side of the triangle. Nope. Logan haunts her as a ghost, and I kept thinking that there really was a possibility they'd get back together.
4. Jay-Violet-Rafe From the Body Finder series by Kimberly Derting
You would think that Violet and Jay were an unbreakable couple. They were best friends who became more. But this series took a darker turn, and Rafe represents a character who can help Violet understand a whole different side of herself. I can't wait to find out what happens in the next book!
3. Tucker-Clara-Christian from the Unearthly series by Cynthia Hand
This triangle is similar to the one above. Clara is an angel, and Tucker is mortal. Christian hasn't made any moves on Clara yet, but I have a feeling that might be coming in the final book in this trilogy. Eeep!
2. Gale-Katniss-Peeta from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
I had absolutely no idea which of these guys Katniss was going to choose for the longest time. Then by book three, I could see that one of the guys was subtly changing and I had my suspicions about what was going to happen. Still, I can't deny that this was a good one!
1. Jem-Tessa-Will from the Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare
Okay, so I've only read Clockwork Angel, and after that I'm Team Will, but then at the end of that book, Will pushes Tessa away. Don't tell me what happens in Clockwork Prince!
To enter Freebie Friday, just tell me your favorite literary, TV or film love triangle. Okay, if you're totally and completely allergic to love triangles, you can make your case. If you don't think I can find you if you win, please also leave an email in the Google Doc. Thanks!
Open internationally and entries will close at 8 am on Saturday, September 22. THIS FREEBIE FRIDAY IS OVER BUT PLEASE CHECK BACK NEXT FRIDAY :)