Cora Carmack shares her favourite couples in literature, from Greek myths to dystopian fantasy
My mother was an English teacher, so I’ve been an avid reader for a long time. And there’s nothing I love more than a good literary couple. I mean, I make my living playing with fictional couples, so I must enjoy it, right?
Here are my top ten favorite literary couples of all time.
10. Gatsby and Daisy from F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby – I swear I loved Gatsby before he was Leonardo DiCaprio. And as number ten on my list, this is just one of the many doomed couples I have fallen for over the years.
9. Beatrice and Benedick from Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. They were the original “I hate you, I love you” couple. And I adore them for it.
8. Othello and Desdemona from Shakespeare's Othello: another tragic couple, but one of my favorites. He kills her when he believes she has had an affair, then kills himself when he finds out it's not true. Theirs is an obsessive love that makes for great fiction.
7. Peeta and Katniss from Suzanne's Collins' The Hunger Games – I loved them in the first book, but the second book sealed the deal for me. Drawn together by a dystopian gladiator-style tournament, we want them to succeed. But there are moments of humour, especially on Peeta’s part, that I think take them from good to great.
6. Winnie and Jesse from Natalie Babbitt's Tuck Everlasting. He is immortal; she isn't. I’m STILL upset that this one didn’t work out. Don’t remind me.
5. Peter and Wendy from J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan. I know they were children and never officially a couple, but my heart always wanted them together so badly.
4. Elizabeth and Mr Darcy from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. Reading this book was one of the first times I can remember getting that fluttery feeling in my stomach from a fictional couple.
3. Heathcliff and Catherine from Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights. I love this book. It is dark and tumultuous and angsty, and sounds a lot like many new adult books, in fact.
2. Rudy and Liesel from Marcus Zusack's The Book Thief. I cannot explain this one unless you want me to burst into tears. As the narrator says with regards to Rudy, "He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It’s his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry."
1. Orpheus and Eurydice. I love this myth. Orpheus is a talented musician whose wife Eurydice dies when she is bitten by a snake. He goes to the Underworld and manages to persuadeHades with his beautiful music to take her back, on the condition that he doesn't look at her all the way to the Upper World. Which, of course, he does, so she vanishes again, this time forever. I have loved numerous re-incarnations of this story. Maybe it’s because Orpheus is an artist or because he goes to such lengths to get Eurydice back, only to have it all fall apart. These two hit me right in the feels.
Finding It by Corma Carmack is out now, published by Ebury.