The YA Lover’s Guide to Dating Dealbreakers

I heart DarcyCongratulations! You’ve just had a wonderful first date with a really cute boy/girl/androgynous snowman, and you’re finally feeling like you have it all: love, chocolate, and a quickly multiplying collection of Sarah J. Maas books piling up on your bedside table. Then, just as you’re getting comfortable, IT happens. It’s okay, you think, maybe I can overlook this. But some things are non-negotiable. So if you find your adorably androgynous snowman doing any of the following, it’s time to stop, drop, and roll back to your nearest bookstore.

He monopolizes your time.
Look, anyone who’s going to date you needs to know that, first and foremost, your devotion is to your to-read list. After all, there are dozens of books released every week, and you’ve got to stay focused if you want to keep up. You don’t have time to be constantly going on dates or cuddling or whatever cutesy, couple stuff this clingy dingbat has in mind. Pat may be a hottie, but nobody displaces your reading stack.

She’s jealous of your devotion to Simon Snow.
Second only to your love of books in general is your love of fictional characters. It’s not that you don’t know Augustus Waters isn’t a real human—it’s just that you intend to daydream about him anyway. It’s not cheating, really (though perhaps not for lack of trying on your part). But Simon and Augustus and Draco and the lot have been in your life far longer than this chick, and you’re not going to give them up now.

He thinks you read “kids’ books.”
If he thinks it’s okay to look down on your personal reading choices, he’s got another think coming. Besides the fact that it wouldn’t matter if you only ever read coloring books, YA novels are NOT just for kids, or teens. If he doubts your word, challenge him to read Eleanor & Park and not have all the feels…and then dump his condescending self, because you’ve got some reviews to post on your blog and you don’t have room for his oversized ego.

She won’t hang with you at the bookstore/library/thrift store with a really good used books selection.
You leave the house for one reason and one reason only: to gather more books. So if your new lady pal ever wants to see you in the light of day, she had better be prepared to browse the shelves of your local book haven (or at least be willing to sit around and wait). And if she claims she’s “bored” or that you’re “taking too long” (impossible), well, it just wasn’t meant to be.

He’s not into stories.
It’s (sad but) true that not everyone is into reading. Some people even have good reasons. And like Cath in Fangirl, sometimes you can’t help falling for a nonreader. That’s fine. But if he can’t even hang around and listen to you read or talk about plot holes in a movie or think about any kind of storytelling at all, what do you even have in common? Answer: nothing.

She interrupts you while you’re rereading Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince for the twelfth time. 
“You’re reading that again?” she sneers. Nope, nope, nope. If your would-be lover doesn’t understand your reading time is sacred, no matter what you’re reading, just shoot her this link and shove her out the door.

He won’t follow your Tumblr account. 
Doesn’t he see that Tumblr is the core of your book nerd soul? The location of all your favorite book quotes, the treasure trove of reading gifs, the best place to explore all your fandom theories? If your boy toy truly wants to know the real you, he’d better start reblogging all your posts, and stat.

She doesn’t understand your obsession with pretty book covers. 
You can’t help it if the only thing you want to do is take pictures of all the pretty books you see. Covers are fascinating, and yes, you are going to spend copious amounts of time hyperanalyzing font choices and color combinations. If she isn’t prepared to listen to your rants about cover art photoshop chop-jobs, there’s a curb or two you’d like to kick her to.

He refuses to plan for the apocalypse with you.
Last but not least, look: you’ve read enough YA novels to know the apocalypse is coming (and sooner rather than later). Your one true love will know and understand this—and, with any luck, be willing to help you build an underground bunker to keep your book collection safe. Because when it comes down to it, all you need to be happy is you, your androgynous snowman, and a pile of good books to get you through the zombie apocalypse.

What are your dating dealbreakers?

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