Let's Talk About Friendship

12:40 PM


Let's do something a little different today. a day after the post was actually due, but whatever. 


A certain holiday is coming up this weekend, which means a lot of us will be talking about our favorite bookish couples and so on.

BUT. I'm a rebel.

So today I'm going to be flailing about some of my favorite friendships in YA books. I'm a huge supporter of strong friendships (there really aren't enough of them) and I want to support that. I tried to think of my favorite guy/girl friendships specifically, because let's be honest, that's a rarity in YA and something that needs to be fixed.

I'm not ranking them in any particular order, because that would be difficult. 

1. Connor and Grace (Unwind dystology)

First of all: Grace is a wildly underrated character here, despite the fact that she's funny and smart and 100% hardcore. More than that, we seem to forget that Connor (my precious angsty child) is possibly the first person to treat her like a full person despite some of her mental handicaps, and also recognize and acknowledge her genius/skills. Their friendship is full of sass and snarky comebacks, which always makes for a fun time. 

"Sorry," says Grace as she sets up a second game. 
"Never apologize for winning." 
"Sorry," says Grace again. "Not for winning, but for being sorry for winning." 
Throughout the next game, Grace gives a blow-by-blow analysis, pointing out all the moves Connor should have made and why. 

2. Brontë and Tennyson (Bruiser)

Technically these two are siblings, but that doesn't make their friendship any less great. They fight constantly, like real siblings do. They exchange vocabulary words. They fight more. They insult each other. They protect each other when it really matters, and back each other up, and respect each other's choices while still looking out for them and their friends. They have a healthy, supportive, non-bratty relationship/friendship, and that means the world to me. I have a hard time with a lot of YA sibling relationships, but I get the strong feeling that these two really do love each other. *cries forever* 

What is my sister thinking? This guy -- this looooser -- has got no business breathing the same air as her, much less taking her out on a date. Just because he asked doesn't mean she has to accept.
"Are you afraid that if you say no, he'll bury you in his backyard or something?" I ask the question over dinner, while I'm still steaming from the news.
My sister, Brontë, gives me a look that says Excuse me, but I can take care of myself, and she says, "Excuse me, but I can take care of myself." She learned that look from our mother, God rest her soul. I give Brontë back a look that says I think not, and I say, "You gonna eat that piece of pizza?"
 

3. Enna and Razo (The Books of Bayern)

Oh, Razo, my sweet child.

These books were my childhood. I still love them today. Razzo is arguably my favorite character in the whole series because he's so hyper and stupid and reckless and flat-out hilarious. Enna comes in close second for her sick burns (I'm hilarious, don't deny it) and sheer determination. Also the pranks. The pranks are great. 

As you can imagine, this is an interesting friendship.

"Quick. Razo, Beier. That sulky old ram...he beat down a hole in his pen...got into my chicken coop...I tried to stop him, but I --" 
Without a word, two of the boys grabbed the nearest crooks and fled the hall. The door shut, and the girl faced the hall. Immediately Ani noticed that the girl's expression changed. She no longer fought for breath, and a creeping smile pressed dimples into her cheeks. "But I couldn't stop him because I was so busy rigging a bucket of oat mush above the door."

Seriously, so many pranks.

4. Jackaby and Abigail (Jackaby)

Oh my gosh, so this one is beautiful.

Jackaby is Sherlock Holmes meets the Doctor and he's just as much of a gloriously feelsy jerk as you might imagine. Abigail is a hardcore girl in awesome dresses. Together, they solve bizarre supernatural mysteries and sass each other and the people around them constantly. When it comes down to it they have a firm friendship, and help each other with their difficulties, without that whole ridiculous addition of romantic tension. It's amazing, you guys. 

Jackaby leaned in and adopted the sort of hushed, secretive tones that one nearby cannot help but overhear. "Miss Rook, on a scale of one to pomegranate, how dangerous would you say this situation has become?" 

"Dangerous?" I faltered. 
"Yes, Miss Rook," prompted Jackaby. "In your expert opinion." 
"On a scale of one to pomegranate?" I followed his lead, checking over the notes I had scribbled in my notepad and speaking in my most audible, serious whisper. "I should think...acorn? Possibly badger. Time alone will tell." 
My employer nodded solemnly.

5. Darrow and Victra (Golden Son)

So guess who just finished Morning Star and is currently dying. 

Aside from that -- there's some romantic tension, if a little one-sided, in this one, but that doesn't marr the friendship in any way. They're both sarcastic, dry-witted, hardcore people in the middle of a war, and their banter is forever amusing. They've always got each other's backs in a tough situation, even when they don't agree completely. There's also the fact that they give me all the feels. So. 

"Worry? Is that what I saw on your face as we descended?" She lets a merry sigh escape her lips. "Curious. See, I thought it was dread. Terror. All the truly unsettling things. Because you know this moon will be your grave." 
"I thought we weren't fencing anymore," I say. 
"You're right. It's just that I find you very odd. Or, at least I find your choice in friends to be odd." She is sitting in front of me on the lip of the fountain. Her heels scrape against the aged stone. "You've always kept me at arm's length while bringing Tactus and Roque close." 

I could go on and on and on about this obbviously, but I'll spare you. Needless to say, guy/girl friendships in YA are much-needed, and I must see more of them. 

Do you have a favorite bookish friendship?

33 comments

  1. YES these are amazing; even the ones I haven't read seem awesome. One of my favorites is Leisel and Rudy in The Book Thief (I know you don't like it, sorry). I know they sorta like each other, but that doesn't really affect their friendship much and they are perfect and
    *sobs because feels*

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    1. I did like their friendship in the book, even if I didn't enjoy the book itself! Rudy was such a sweetheart. Ugh.

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  2. I like the friendship between Willow and Parvin in A Time to Die.

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  3. Jackaby and Abigal, Yes, they are brilliant. I can't think of any others sadly.

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    1. They're hilarious. I'll be laughing over them forever.

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  4. THESE ARE ALL WONDERFUL AND I MUST HAVE THEM FOREVER. *goes to read all the things*

    My personal favorites would include: (#1 forever) BLUE AND HER BOYS; Celaena and Dorian; Janelle and Barclay from "Unraveling"; Jamie and Mara from "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer"; Frankie and Elle from "The Fine Art of Truth or Dare".

    <3

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  5. I LOVE FRIENDSHIPS AN ENDLESS AMOUNT TOO!! HUZZAH!!! And yes there are never enough, for sure....but honestly friendship stories have my feels squeaking more than a romance. #noregrets.
    This reminds me how much I need to re-read Unwind and then finish the series. ALSO ALL THE RED RISING LOVE. <3
    I definitely adore Jefferson and Lee from Walk on Earth a Stranger. Like they're friends with the possibility of something more...but so far they're pretty much just friends AND THEY'RE AWESOME. Also The Raven Boys and Blue. <333

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    1. It's true! Fluffy friendships just make me so happy because they're adorable and rare and allll the feelings.

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  6. "gloriously feelsy jerk" might just be the best description of Jackaby I have ever seen xD I absolutely adore his and Abigail's friendship. It's the best. And Connor and Grace. They're all so precious.

    As for friendships, two come to mind. From the same series. Ruby and Chubs / Ruby and Cole from The Darkest Minds series by Alexandra Bracken. They're so great. *quietly flails*

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    1. I THOUGHT OF ANOTHER. PEGGY AND JARVIS FROM AGENT CARTER. Their friendship/partnership is the greatest thing ever.

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    2. PEGGY AND JARVIS YESSSS. *flails happily* I love them way too much.

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  7. YES Abigail and Jackaby are my favorites. I do love reading about a good friendship. A lot of times I feel like they can be more realistic than a love story. :P

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    1. SAME. I very much appreciate the fact that they're just friends, y'know?

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  8. I really like Harry and Hermione from the Harry Potter series.

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    1. Omg yes yes yes yes yes a million times!!
      -Musicgirl121

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  9. These quotes are wonderful and I am ashamed that the only book of all the ones I've read here is Unwind. And is Grace in the first Unwind book? If she is, I don't really remember her. Sibling relationships are so underrated in YA, and this should change. Some YA friendships are so wonderful and we need more of them. Also, why have I not read some of these. I need help. Wonderful post as usual, Aimee!

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    1. Grace doesn't come in until the third one, I do believe.

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  10. I WENT TO A BOOK SIGNING AND MET PIERCE BROWN!! Two days ago. I'm still freaking out.

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  11. Gah, I've never read any of these books, but those friendships sound so good. Now those books sound a thousand more times interesting. *scrambles to get ahold of them*

    My brain is seriously blanking on my favorite bookish friendships. But I know that I love them. :P I really like Karou and Zuzana's friendship in Daughter of Smoke and Bone. And I love Ender and his various friends from Ender's Game. Oh, and I also love Montag and Clarisse's friendship in Fahrenheit 451. *nods*

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    1. *shoves all the books at you* You haveeee to read all the things.

      Ender is such a precious child and I agree, his friends are awesome. So many feelings.

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  12. There are so many friendships in the Throne of Glass series that I love. ^_^ Some of them become romantic at some points (shh), BUT that aside, there are some great, loyal relationships in those books... especially Queen of Shadows. The friendships in that book gave me all the feels.

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    1. Ooh, feelsy friendships are always the best.

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    2. I don't get enough of them in literature, I think. ^_^ They ARE the best.

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  13. I can't wait to read the rest of Unwind!I always loved the interaction between the two there because it seemed like an endless string of the two of them analyzing each other.

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  14. I love that you broke the cliche and made this about friendships. To me, friendships are waaaaay more compelling than romantic relationships most of the time (and let's not even start about sibling relationships because I just watched the first season of Supernatural and I will flail). I haven't actually read/seen? any of the friendships you mentioned here, but I like reading about them and how well done they are-- especially since my current WIP is focused on a very interesting frenemy-ship.

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  15. Alas, Connor and Grace are the only ones I know, but all in all, Connor and Grace are among the best characters to be found on the shelf... SO. Clearly, we cannot forget about their awesomeness at any length. Especially here.

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  16. I've not read any of these books, but if you want an AMAZING guy/girl friendship go for Skulduggery Pleasant books! Skulduggery and Valkyrie = my life.

    (I've also gotta say here, Harry and Hermione.)

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hey. hey. talk to me. i'm a fan of comments and flailing with you. go for it.