Top 5 cliché lines I passionately dislike in books // Friday Five


Today I’m going to be listing my top 5 cliché lines that I really really do not like appearing in books I read (you could call it hatred if you wanted to put a name to it). Do they annoy me? Yes. Do they engulf me in fury? Sometimes. Do they make me to scream or laugh at the characters and say, “do you actually understand the words that are coming out of your mouth?!?” Absolutely. So here I have a list of my top 5 (that I can think of at this moment) lines in books that fill me with secondhand embarrassment or just make me go urghhh…

5. The rash self-sacrificer

Fine, I won’t go.
*Then secretly gets themselves (almost) killed*

Yes we are starting off with the line where a character agrees to formulate a RATIONAL plan and then totally does the opposite thinking they can fix the problem without telling anyone. Intelligence levels top-notch much? I used to be fine with this line, but recently it’s been emerging in books more recently and I am kinda sick of it. Yes it’s the heroic and brave thing to do, but a lot of the time the character who intends to sacrifice themselves makes the decision with unreasonable thinking aaaand creates more trouble because obviously their friends are going to try to save them. Especially when the character who obviously (to the readers) are stubbornly going to sacrifice themselves makes a HUGE speech on how they aren’t going to because it would be a stupid decision *nodding vigorously*, and surprise surprise… they totally go against what they said to get themselves killed. This line of course is only a portion of the self-sacrificing scene.

4. The destined

I knew we were meant to be.

I’m going to say it now – I don’t like destiny, fate or whatever you want to call it. I don’t like not being about to make choices, there being no free will. What really ticks me off is when characters follow through with it. I actually quite like it in books when characters are like stuff the prophecies, I’m going to do something else. Once again, I didn’t always hate this line or trope and I believe it can be done well (the trope that is, the line on the order hand is overused and I don’t really want to see it). However, at this point, I get exasperated when I see this popping up constantly, especially when characters half-hearted and “accidentally” defy the system and *gasp* don’t follow destiny. This is definitely a 5/5 eye roll moment for me.


3. The pretentious

I’m not like other girls.

Boys can also say this line in books but I find girls saying this is more common. Firstly, there is no problem being like “other girls”. Secondly, most of the time they aren’t any different to others girl, they’re just not the stereotyped girl or they’re given these so-called masculine characteristics – actually a majority of girls don’t even fit into the stereotype these days, right? Such hobbies of these “different girls” include “boy sports” (I really hate that term), coding, gaming. Thirdly, this usually makes the character annoying and catty because they believe they’re above other girls. NOT EVERY GIRL WANTS TO TEAR DOWN OTHER GIRLS (sorry that wasn’t directed towards you, just internal spleen). I just don’t like when characters call themselves an exception to their “typically unworthy group” they belong to. In fact, I see so many “different girls/boys” in YA books, maybe these characters should get together and see how similar they are being all different (irony… BOOM).

2. The instalove

When I saw you, I knew I was in love.

I really don’t know anyone who likes this line in books because it’s just so predictable. It’s so overused and makes them look desperate. And after that, they do something stupid because the one-sided “love” makes them a pathetic mess. Also, how can you know your in love with someone from a moment’s glance (or eye stalking them around the room)? Honey, you need to identify that isn’t luuurve. You don’t know them so it’s physical attraction. It’s lust. I just don’t see how characters can fall in love from eyes meeting across the room or in such a short amount of time. I will never understand why authors continue to include this trope in their books. Cringe factor: high.

1. The soulmates that didn’t have a life until they met each other (that title is totally going to catch on)

You complete me.

Arghhh so much rage when I read this one. Also I am a cynical person so it really makes me want to shake the character and shout, “where is your ambition in life?” You might be wondering why this is above the instalove – a common hated trope in books. Mainly it’s due to the unnecessary and excessive dependence these relationships contain. Also, I don’t like the suggestion that a person’s life can’t be fulfilling without the significant other. I don’t think I’m explain my point very well, but basically I don’t think an individual needs a romantic partner to feel whole and satisfied in life. I’m not talking about another person enhancing or allowing themselves to see and make change within themselves. Just not a fan of this line and I don’t think this idea should be taught.

I really hope I didn’t offend anyone – not my intention at all. It is absolutely fine if you like any of these cliché lines in books and I’m not hating on your taste in books. I must say although I passionately dislike these lines most of the time, if they are done well and suit the situation, I quite like them. Also, sometimes I do like if an author take a cliché and totally twists it, contradicts it or make it unique, essentially throwing away all its elements and rebuilds it (it can be pretty cool occasionally if it is aced). There you go! Those are my top 5 clichéd lines I see quite often reading and am like stop. Please stop. Of course there are variations, it’s not necessarily those specific lines, but just those types of situations tend make me peeved. Read away and have a great weekend!

Emily x


 Do you agree with my list or do you actually not despise them as much as I do? What cliché lines do you loathe in books or, maybe you don’t get as aggravated as I do and only mildly irritated? Perhaps there is a book that embodies all these terrible cliché lines. Also if these clichés appear in books, does it ruin the book for you? Let me know and comment below! (that rhymes hehe) So many questions *evil laugh*.

9 thoughts on “Top 5 cliché lines I passionately dislike in books // Friday Five

  1. The crazy thing is that you can actually find ALL of them in ONE book! Ahahah! I’ll admit that I don’t mind instalove that much, part of me even likes it (can’t help it!) but instalove + the destined + soulmates that didn’t have a life until they met… Come on…
    Ahaha, great post!


    • Haha YES that’s so true – they often do appear in one book. I didn’t realise that when I was writing this post, but I guess I tend to cringe more in romance prominent books. I’m curious to know what aspect of instalove you like though because sometimes I don’t mind those tropes if I’m in a reading slump – just so easy to get through. Thanks for reading!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I guess you said it: they’re just so easy to get through! ahaha. Perfect cure for a reading slump. A bit predictable in the plot arc, but kind of reliable for the same reason. You know from the beginning that it’s going to end well, and sometimes you just need a cute, happy novel like that. (At least, I do.)

        Liked by 1 person

  2. YESSSS!!!! I HATE the ‘overly heroic sacrifice’ – like Tris in the Divergent series. SO many times, she makes reckless decisions when there are perfectly logical plans in place that DON’T involve her unnecessarily putting her life at risk :/ And the ‘my life only started when I met you’/instalove trope makes me shudder :O


    • Ughhh reckless heroic sacrifices make me so frustrated sometimes – I literally mentally shout at those characters because usually that “brave” act puts everyone else in danger with more work. YES so cringy with characters that aren’t happy with themselves until they meet someone like that magically completes them (logic – 0)?!? Basically saying I 100% agree with you. Sorry for being so shieky, not directed at you :D

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This list was hilarious! I think my favorite line to hate is where the heroine/hero goes, “I’m not pretty, I’m plain.” Or something to that effect, but then a major source of contention is a love triangle L-A-W-L. That makes NO SENSE.


    • Ooooh that one has become really common in books now when the author spends the whole novel “subtlety” portraying them as a special snowflake and the character doesn’t know. Haha then the love triangle is the conflict… sure XD Thanks!!


  4. I have never been so in love with a post. This list accurately hit on every single book cliché that makes me want to throw a book across the room then stomp it repeatedly… before picking it back up and sloughing through the nonsense. Obviously, I agree 150% with everything on this list, especially “the pretentious.” It’s my biggest pet peeve. Though, sometimes, I just continue reading the book to tear into that later when discussing the book. I don’t think the appearance of any of these has ever stopped me from reading before (fingers crossed for future me); it really just depends on the book/plot. Of course, if I managed to find that supreme BS book that embodied them all, I’d probably have to chuck it.

    The one thing I would add to this list would be the opposite of “the pretentious” AKA “the too-plain Jane” where the narrative centers around how the main character is plain to the max… too plain to ever have anything nice happen to them. Oh, and did we mention, they’re plain af? Because they are, and you shouldn’t forget it… EVER!


    • I’m so happy you you could relate with the post and that’s a nice, committed visual you have there with what you do to those type of books haha. If the author really wants to show are girl or boy is “different for others”, at least show not tell, right? Same I don’t usually put down the book straight away if they contain these clichés but knowing their presence does bug me a *tiny* bit. Yeah it really does depend on the book because if it works, it works. YES ugh plain Janes – you really can’t build a good story around those type of main characters. I’m glad we could share a mutual (major) distaste in these cliché lines!!!


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