In Defense of the Rom-Com
It's no secret that I love a good rom-com. From Casey McQuiston's Red White and Royal Blue to Emily Henry's Beach Read, and even Emma Lord's Tweet Cute, there's always at least one that makes its way into my favorite books of the year. Sometimes, there's nothing I want to read more than a quick, relatively lighthearted story knowing that regardless of what drama ensues, it's almost guaranteed to have a happy ending. It's a great way to find a moment of peace when life gets too stressful, and for me, that's one of my favorite forms of escapism.
And yet, there's still this strange dismissal of rom-coms as a whole. Of course, there are always outliers, and some readers are more than willing to share all of the great romance that they're reading, from the sweet and fluffy to the dark and smutty. But for many readers, there's a sense of embarassment or even shame that can come from admitting they love to read a good love story. This happens a lot with media that's consumed by an audience predominately made up of young women. Whether we're talking about Twilight, One Direction, or any of the countless popular teen dramas that have been popular over the last decade, there's always a group of people who see content like this as frivolous and not worth their time. If women like it, it must be bad.
To those people, there's a lot of things I want to say, but in an effort to refrain from riddling this article with profanity, I'll keep it brief with one simple message; It's okay to read something just because you like it.
Not everthing you consume needs to be chock full of life-changing advice and world-altering perspective. Not everything you read needs to be "scholarly" or part of the literary canon. Sometimes reading is just for fun. And if, like me, watching two people fall in love through a series of cheesy lines and cliche tropes is something that brings you joy, that's more than okay.
Whether you're looking for something sweet to read this Valentine's Day or just want to pick up something fun for when you're in need of some brain candy, here's some of my favorite romantic comedies perfect for enjoying for a pint of ice cream and perhaps a bubble bath.