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Fuss, Cuss & Discuss: Age gaps in books & why some people’s reactions confuse & amuse me

Fuss Cuss & Discuss_vers1

Hey there my lovelies!

It’s about time to implement my New Year’s resolutions and to start with my discussion posts! My last one was in September 2019 so shame on me for taking so long! *lol* Anyway, let’s not dwell on the past but rather focus on the future of my „Fuss, Cuss & Discuss“ post. 😉

I’ve been a member on goodreads for about 2 1/2 years now and there’s a topic that always returns and comes up again: Age gaps between book characters! Now the first thing you’ve to know about me is that my hubby and I have an age difference of about 9 years. Neither of us sees this as problematic and in all honesty when you reach a certain age and both of your lives head in the same direction, it actually isn’t an issue anymore.

So let’s explain my stance on age gaps and when they should be considered problematic (well at least in my opinion):

  • 12 year old girl and 16 year old boy: NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! That would be so, so, so soooo damn wrong I can’t even!!! They are both at completely different stages of their lives. Their age gap might only be 4 years but at that age this makes all the difference!!!
  • 20 year old girl and 26 year old girl/boy (let’s get a little bit of diversity into this 😉 ): Yes, go for it! They are both adults and they (supposedly) know what they want from life. (I have to mention that in Austria you’re an adult when you’re 18. At that age you’re allowed to drive, to drink and to marry. I’m aware that it’s different in other countries, hence the short digression. XD)
  • 40 year old man and 60 year old woman/man: Well, they are old enough to know that their partner could be their own kid, but if they love each other and want the same thing, who am I to judge?

Well, that’s my opinion about age gaps in a nutshell. Still, in the bookish world there are more interesting things that can happen and it never ceases to amaze me how people think of them. One of the most interesting things are age gaps in YA and fantasy books. Why are they so interesting? Well, because in all honesty the way people react to those age gaps is amusing and sometimes, yes, I admit it, outright hilarious! *lol*

Want an example?

Okay, let’s go with „Throne of Glass“ here because this actually made me smirk when I read it. Warning: This is going to be spoilery so if you didn’t read the „Throne of Glass“ series or „Twilight“ yet, you better don’t continue to read! Fair warning, you still got time to leave this page! 😉

Are you ready?

So , in „Throne of Glass“ we have our MC Celaena Sardothien and at one point in the series we reach a moment where it’s mentioned that her former mentor and King of the Assassins Arobynn Hamel loved her and that she was intrigued by him too. At that moment in the series Celaena is about 17 or 18 and Arobynn is 38? Imagine the reactions of the people who read this! „Ewww“ and „This age gap is nauseous!“ were rather mild reactions. And okay, I admit it, that’s an age gap that wouldn’t be okay for me too, but then you always have to see things from the right perspective because and now comes the part where I couldn’t help but laugh:

People found it completely intolerable that Celaena and Arobynn had feelings for each other, but they were totally okay with the Celaena/Rowan ship! Which gets one big fat *LOL* from me! You wonder why? Well, because dear Prince Rowan Whitethorn might look like a 17 year old teenager but is actually 350+ years old! Funny just because he looks like a 17 year old teen it’s okay for them to be together? Let’s be real here: He’s about 312 years older than Arobynn and about 332 years older than Celaena! So if you ask me that’s a really unacceptable age gap. The about 20 years between Arobynn and Celeana are peanuts in comparison. *lol* Not that I don’t ship them, I’m all for the Celaena/Rowan ship but why do people think to ship them is totally okay and to ship her with Arobynn is wrong? From the age perspective it makes absolutely no sense.

The same thing could be used for „Twilight“ as well. I mean Bella is what? 17? And Edward is 100 years old? If you break it down to the basics Edward is a 100 year old creeper that watches a 17 year old girl while she sleeps! *lol* Yet everyone is riled up about the age gap between Bella and Jacob. Because, OH MY, Jacob is 15 and 2 years younger than Bella! The mere idea is so horrible, I can’t even! (notice the sarcasm in here! 😛 )

You can blame me for shipping Bella with Jacob but quite honestly if it comes to the age difference, those two are harmless in comparison to the Bella/Edward ship! XD Just saying!

And with that I’ve reached the end of my „Fuss, Cuss & Discuss“ post. There are like about a gazillion of other examples I could have used as well, but I’ll just leave it at that. I think after reading those two you already get the idea. 😉


So what do you say? Huge age gaps between the MCs of a book: YAY or NAY? Does it depend on the book genre? Would you be okay with a 15 years age gap between a faerie and a human? Would you see it differently if it would be a 15 year difference between the MCs of a contemporary book? Why is it okay in fantasy books? What’s your stance on age gaps in general?

Let’s fuss, cuss and discuss! 😛



The Sassy Library Fox

8 Gedanken zu „Fuss, Cuss & Discuss: Age gaps in books & why some people’s reactions confuse & amuse me“

  1. ‚My‘ main problem (well, not exactly MY problem, ‚cause it’s not my relationship, right? ;)) with the relationship between a faerie and a human would not be the age gap – although it’s a factor, but not in the way that one is so much older than the other, I’m thinking more of the fact that this means that one of them is going to live so much longer than the other (keeping immortal species aside…).
    The thing I’d actually think most of would be the differences between the species and all the possible problems that come along with this.
    I’m not saying that the two of them shouldn’t go for it, because if they love each other… And finally it’s not my life or relationship, is it? 😉

    Finally, I guess, people don’t consider relationships in fantasy books problematic because it’s fantasy. Contemporary books seem to be realistic. At least more realistic than fantasy books. 😀

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    1. I agree with you! It would really suck to find the love of your life and then it’s a faerie and he’ll outlive you for millenia. Or the other way around you’re the poor faerie and will see your loved one die one day. 😦 Makes me sad just to think about it. Thankfully authors of fantasy books are usually kind enough to find a solution for those „mortality problems.“ *lol*

      I think you might be right. With contemporary books it could happen in real life and with fantasy books it’s well, yeah, fantasy. XD I still don’t get why you’d make a distinction in a case like with Arobynn and Celaena though. I mean they live in a fantasy universe as well and just because they are both human some people would consider their relationship to be wrong. But with Rowan who’s a faerie and ages older than Celaena it would still be okay? *lol* It boggles the mind.

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  2. I am so happy to read this post, I haven’t read anything like it before.
    I personally find the Bellaward ship rather upsetting now that I am older, but will admit that I was a diehard shipper for both Bellaward and Jakella when I was thirteen or so.
    Rowaelin is one of my favorite ships, but Manorian will always be better to me, and i guess it could be considered a similar situation since Manon is also a very old Crochan witch (117, I think).
    Another amazing post!
    – Emma 🙂

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    1. Weren’t we all? *lol* I shipped both ships as well but when it came down to it I was always #TeamJake! XD I never really liked Bellaward because I didn’t like their relationship. I mean Edward hurt her pretty badly. Emotionally at least. So there’s that.
      As for Rowaelin. It took me a while to warm for this ship but I eventually did. Nothing, and I repeat NOTHING is better than Manorian though! I will ship those two until I die! *lol* ❤ You're right about the age difference between them as well! Just that Manon is the older one in their relationship. XD

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