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TOP TEN TUESDAY: Platonic Relationships in Books


To learn more about Top Ten Tuesday, a weekly book meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, click here.

I was really excited when I saw that the theme for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday was platonic relationships because I love platonic relationships. Found families, snarky siblings, unlikely friendships – they’re all my jam. Here are, in no particular order, my top ten platonic relationships in books.

#1 Percy and Sally Jackson (Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordan)

Cover of Percy Jackson and the Lightning ThiefMy mother can make me feel good just by walking into the room. Her eyes sparkle and change color in the light. Her smile is as warm as a quilt. She’s got a few grey streaks mixed in with her long brown hair, but I never think of her as old. When she looks at me, it’s like she’s seeing all the good things about me, none of the bad.

It’s always so obvious how much Percy and his mom love each other, and that they would do anything for each other, and that’s why I love them.

#2 Pepper (Jane) and Owl (Wayfarers Series by Becky Chambers)

Owl had been good to her. She stayed on the screen by the bed all day, and she taught Jane about something called music, which was a weird bunch of sounds that had no point but made things feel a little better.

The Wayfarers Series is chock-full of wonderful found family dynamics, but this AI becoming a parent to a little girl in need is my favourite. Their relationship is so sweet and sometimes heart-wrenching.

#3 Shahrzad and Irsa (The Wrath and the Dawn Duology by Renée Ahdiee)

Cover of The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh“Do you trust me, Jirjirak?” Shahrzad took Irsa’s hands in her own.

Irsa had never known what to expect from Shahrzad. But trust had never been an issue. At least not for Irsa.

“Of course I trust you,” she said.

This exchange, and their relationship in general, just says so much about sisterhood and solidarity.

#4 Scarlett and Reem (Scarlett Undercover by Jennifer Latham)

“We’re going to Jumu’ah prayers together.”

“I’d like that,” I said. And it was true. Because even though I wanted Gemma home safe and Solomon’s ring in my pocket and the Children of Iblis destroyed, what I needed more than anything else was to stay alive long enough to pray with my sister on Friday.

This is another relationship between sisters who really, really love each other even though they don’t always see eye to eye. Their affection for each other is heart-warming.

#5 Katsa and Bitterblue (Graceling Trilogy by Kristin Cashore)

Katsa hugged her for a long time, and Bitterblue understood that this was always how it would be. Katsa would come and then Katsa would go. But the hug was real, and lasting, even though it would end. The coming was as real as the going, and the coming would always be a promise. It would have to be good enough.

It means so much to me for Bitterblue, a traumatised child, to find safety in Katsa, and for Katsa to find strength in Bitterblue.

#6 Peter Grant and Sahra Guleed (Rivers of London Series by Ben Aaronovitch)

Cover of The Hanging Tree by Ben Aaronovitch“I don’t know if you’ve noticed but just about everyone else is off working that murder in Fulham,” said Guleed. “It’s basically you, me and whatever time we can bully out of David.”

“I hadn’t noticed,” I said, although it did explain where everyone else was that morning.

“Not surprising,” said Guleed. “You were too busy blowing up Harrods.”

Snarky coworkers who respect each other (kind of). Their dynamic is one of my favourites in the series. I haven’t gotten around to reading the comics featuring both of them yet, but I definitely will at some point.

#7 Mae and Jamie (The Demon’s Lexicon Trilogy by Sarah Rees Brennan)

Cover of The Demon's Covenant by Sarah Rees Brennan“Oh, I am planning things,” said Jamie. “Great, great things. I could join a band.”

“You gave up the guitar after two lessons.”

“Well,” he said, “I could be a backup dancer.”

“Backup dancers have to wear belly shirts and glitter,” said Mae. “So obviously, I support this plan.”

Silly bantering siblings who would literally lay down their lives for each other? Sign me up.

#8 Kate and Julie (Kate Daniels Series by Ilona Andrews)

Kate looked at me. It was her hard-ass stare. Kate could be really scary.

“That doesn’t work on me,” I told her. “I know you won’t hurt me.”

The Kate Daniels series is one of my forever favourites, and these two are so near and dear to my heart. Kate has a tendency of adopting strays, and even though she acts like a hard-ass, she’s really mushy on the inside.

#9 Samirah and Magnus (Magnus Chase Series by Rick Riordan)

15724396“Somebody once told me that a hero’s bravery has to be unplanned – a genuine response to a crisis. It has to come from the heart, without any thought of reward.”

Sam huffed. “That somebody sounds pretty smug.”

“Maybe you didn’t need to come here,” I decided. “Maybe I did. To understand why we’re a good team.”

This relationship is a great example of the kind of friendship dynamic I like: some bickering, some teasing, but mostly lots of love and respect.

#10 Cinder and Iko (The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer)

“You need a system debug if you’re suggesting that I would abandon you now.”

You didn’t think I could end this post without another mention of an unusually emotional AI, did you? Cinder’s and Iko’s unwavering loyalty to each other definitely earns them a spot on this list. They seem very different from the outside, but they’re really not so different if you look close, and all the more protective of each other.

Comment below to let me know what your favourite platonic relationships are! Are you a found family fiend like me?

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