By Zahra Arshad
The days leading up to Valentine’s Day are the perfect time to snuggle up with some great novels. Whether you plan to celebrate this year or not it’s hard to avoid the holiday. Books don’t care if you’re single, dating, married, or divorced. Books understand. And even if you aren’t feeling the love this year, don’t worry your time will come, just curl up with a good book and loose yourself in someone else’s.
Check out my favourite books to help put you in the mood for love. Or, at least, give you a laugh or two.
Pride and Prejudice (1813) by Jane Austen
Love can come suddenly and takes time to find. This is A tale that follows the emotional journey of Elizabeth Bennet, who learns about making judgments on first impressions. The novel revolves around the importance of marrying for love, not simply for money, despite the social pressures to make a good match, during the British Regency period. Read and watch the stubborn Elizabeth fall in love with the dashing Mr Darcy.
Jane Eyre (1847) by Charlotte Brontë
A novel of passion and dark secrets. It tells the story of orphan Jane Eyre, who grows up in the home of her heartless aunt, enduring loneliness and cruelty. She grows up having natural independence and spirit and finds herself working as a governess for the young Mr Rochester. Follow her as she falls in love and uncovers the truth at Thornfield Hall’s and has to make a choice. Read this novel of passionate depiction of a woman’s search for equality and freedom.
The Time Travelers Wife (2003) by Audrey Niffenegger
An extraordinary love story that time can’t keep apart. Following the love story of Harry, with a genetic disorder that causes him to time travel, and his wife, Clare, an artist, who has to cope with his frequent absences and dangerous experiences and are both struggling to lead a normal life. Follow the struggles of this couple and whether Harry out runs time. A book that focuses on the issues of love, loss, and free will and uses time travel.
The Notebook (2004) by Nicholas Sparks
A love that refuses to fade even in old age. Follow a young couple who fall in love in the 1940s. The novel follows Noah Calhoun, who has returned from World War II. Attempting to escape the ghosts of battle, he tries to restore an old plantation home, but is haunted by the girl who captured his heart. The story is told from the present day by an elderly man telling the tale to a fellow nursing home resident.
The Best Of Me (2011) by Nicholas Sparks
A tale of true love and first love that never died. Following teenage sweethearts from opposite worlds with a passion that would change their lives for ever. But will life force them apart? Years later they are are worlds apart, but when called back to their hometown, will old sparks ignite. Faced with each other once again, and forced to confront the paths they chose. Can true love ever rewrite the past? Read this story of pure love that never dies.
The Fault In Our Stars (2012) by John Green
A heartbreaking novel of being alive and falling in love. A story following Hazel Grace Lancaster, a 16-year-old girl with cancer, who is forced by her parents to attend a support group where she meets and falls in love with 17-year-old Augustus Waters, an ex-basketball player and amputee. Is Hazel’s story about to be completely rewritten. Read the love affair that transpires between two terminally ill teenagers.
Two Boys Kissing (2013) by David Levithan
The story explores how people fall in and out of love, and what is means to discover yourself. Follow the lives of three couples Craig and Harry, two 17-year-olds, who are about to set a world record for the longest kiss, Peter and Neil, Avery and Ryan and Cooper who is alone and isn’t sure of how he feels. Read as Craig and Harry become the stepping stone for other teen boys dealing with long-term relationships, coming out and navigating gender.