My thoughts on … popular YA tropes!

Hi and hello ☺

I am feeling slightly anxious right now as I have my driving theory test today (tomorrow as I’m writing this) and I have an irrational fear of failure, so I’ve scrapped my original plans for todays post and instead I’m going to be super chill and talk about my thoughts on Popular YA Tropes!

I was considering doing a Tier Rank List so I got this list of tropes from there but I decided just chit-chatting about each one independantly was much easier then ranking. I have 14 tropes to talk about today so let’s begin:


I don’t know if I really have much of an opinion when it comes to this trope as the only thing I’ve ever read with a major heist plot-line is, of course, the Six of Crows duology.

Moving away from YA though there are heist TV shows and movies that I’ve watched such as Oceans 8 (I have no plans to watch any of the others but this was goood) and Casa de Papel, aka Money Heist (still haven’t finished the first season though cause I am terrible).

I think my favourite element of this trope is in the character interactions. Such different personalities having together. I especially love a bit of antagonism between two characters thrown into the mix.

Recommendations/On my TBR:

I’ll happily take more of this trope where I can get it. Sadly the only book on my TBR that I know has Heist elements is Death Prefers Blondes by Caleb Roehrig so if you have any recs I’d love to hear them!

Fake Dating

Yess!! Give me all of the fake dating tropes please and thank you.

I don’t even know what I love most about this trope. The drama of it all maybe? The way that two characters usually go into the fake-relationship to make another person jealous or to get something out of it but soon their feelings get confused.

I especially love the moment of realisation and the main character’s thought process is always “I’m falling in love but it’s all fake for them, they don’t feel the same way”. Ugh the tension, the emotions! I love it.

What I don’t love however is “dating someone as a joke/as a dare”. No. That’s not cool. I don’t care if the person does develop genuine feelings or not, stuff like that grosses me out. We, as a society, have move passed the need for “popular guy jokingly dates nerd”.

Recommendations/On my TBR:

I have a whole Recommendation post planned for this trope so I’ll just give one of each. Marriage of Unconvenience by Chelsea M. Cameron is a short f/f fake married for inheritance novel and Rent a Boyfriend by Gloria Chao is a new release I’m sure excited to read.

“I’m not like other girls”

Ugh. No. I hate this trope so much.

Whenever I see this trope it’s always because the girl in question isn’t into make up or fashion, doesn’t care about boys, has freckles, is “super nerdy” because she likes superheroes movies despite them being the highest grossing form of media in recent years, etc.

This all just feels like pitting girls against each other for what they do or do not like. You shouldn’t be made to feel bad about caring about typically “girly” things. Also have you noticed how the more girly-girl characters are always pegged as the “mean girl/villains” or the “ditzy” best friend.

So nope. Not a fan of this trope. The only time I want to hear the words “I’m not like other girls” is if the words “I’m a necromancer who raises cat’s from the dead and recruits them as part of my cat-army” comes straight after.

There’s only one bed …

I’m pretty sure I’ve only read this in fanfics and that is a CRIME because this is a top-tier trope.

The fight for the blankets, the trying so hard not to touch the other person but waking up snuggled and sprawled over them anyways, the “you snore in your sleep” “no I don’t” interactions in the morning. *chefs kisses*

Recommendations/On my TBR:

I genuinely can’t think of any books I’ve read with this trope so any recommendations would be much appreciated!!

Enemies to Lovers

I really like this trope but I feel like a there’s a line that can’t be crossed. For example: if Character A killed Character B’s mother then no. I’m not gonna ship that.

A rivals/frenemies to lovers relationship built on pure, unflinching sarcasm and witty back and forth interactions which slowly, over the course of the book, turn more and more flirty. Yes you bet your ass I’m gonna get behind that!

Recommendations/On my TBR:

This is another I have a post planned for so I’m being brief again but … Tweet Cute by Emma Lord was a cute rivals-lovers that I have a raved about a lot.

I can’t think of any currently on my TBR so let me know your favourite!


I just don’t get it. Maybe it’s because I am a cold hearted anxious person who barely likes people when I first meet them but I don’t understand.

I can get on board if it’s like Daughter of Smoke on Bone where the characters knew each other in some way in a past life or along those lines but with your run of the mill contemporary I can’t help but roll my eyes.

Love Triangles

Hmm. I’m not totally opposed to a love triange but I’d really rather not have to deal with one.

They can be done well, The Infernal Devices is evidence to that fact, in my opinion, but I think a lot of the time they just get in the way of what I actually care about.

The Chosen One

While kind of overdone at this point it’s still an Iconic™ trope that I’m trash for and I do think there’s cool new things you can do with this trope if you try hard enough. Just cause it’s an oldie doesn’t mean it’s not also a goodie.

Recommendations/On my TBR:

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell is a great example of taking this trope and turning it into something new and while I haven’t heard much about Chosen Ones by Veronica Roth the premise intrigues me and I’m kind of considering reading it.

Villain with a tragic backstory

The only villain with a tragic backstory I respect is Dr. Doofenshmirtz.

(I’m kidding but I’m also really not)

Found Families.

How can a good found family story not make you smile ear from ear. Family is not blood and I love this sentiment being re-affirmed in novels.

Recommendations/On my TBR:

Would I even be considered a Stan if I don’t recommend All For the Game trilogy by Nora Sakovic? No I would not. These characters hate each other but would also murder/be murdered for anyone on their team and if that’s not family I don’t know what is.

Let’s Overthrow the Government

Time to start treating books with this trope as the guide-book we all need.

Recommendations/On my TBR:

Besides from the obvious 2012 dystopains (The Darkets Minds, Hunger Games) I have no new recs of books I want to read. This needs to change. Leave me books I should read in the comments!

Non-existant parents cause it’s convenient

Specific much 😂 I mean this is an easy way to create angst, you’ve got a built in plot line and personality trait for your main characters but I actually really like reading about healthy parent-child relationships and dynamics.


I feel like in standalone novels it’s annoying because you wait the whole book for them to get together but then boom the book finishes and you never get to see the characters officially dating.

I do love a good slow burn in a series though where there’s more time to develop the characters and the romance and we get to see both parts.

My ideal slow burn goes something like: Falling in love in book 1, pinning and eventually getting together in book 2, and all the romance and all the feels in book 3.

Recommendations/On my TBR:

Hate to recommend the same book again but All For the Game has a great slowburn. Also Percy Jackson and Annabeth Chase are the sweetest and cutest slowburn ever!!

Coming of Age

I am confusion. What are the characteristics of a “comic of age” novel???

Good god this took me a lot longer then I thought it would😭😂

So those where all my thoughts and feeling on popular YA tropes. I’n super interested in what you think of these tropes mentioned and I definitly want to know if you have any specific recommendations.

I’m gonna go eat cheesecake, do some theory tests and read a bit now but thanks for reading and stay safe 🙂

Elli xx

3 thoughts on “My thoughts on … popular YA tropes!”

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