I Knew You Were Trouble

It’s been a while since I did a list so in honour of Valentines Day I thought I’d do a romance related one today. However being the bitter and twisted singleton that I am, I’m not going for any of that slushy nonsense. Instead I’m going for a list of some of the worst book boyfriends. These are the guys who you know are trouble and will break your heart.

It was a bit of a struggle narrowing it down so I’ve chosen a mix of classics, recent reads and popular stories. Be warned though if you haven’t read them (or seen the movie) there may be spoilers. [Note: the links will take you to Goodreads]


1. Jace Wayland (The Mortal Instruments)

OK so he’s kind of hot (or at least Jamie Campbell Bower definitely is) but as a boyfriend he’s an absolute nightmare and definitely to be avoided at all costs. He has possibly the biggest ego in the world (he could never love anyone as much as he loves himself), he’s reckless, has a dangerous job and it’s safe to say his father is a power hungry psychopath. For Clary there is also the issue that he is potentially her brother so that leads to a whole world of angst that in my opinion is best avoided.


2. Todd Hewitt  (Chaos Walking Trilogy)

Chaos walking is a pretty accurate description when it comes to Todd. He seems to be a magnet for trouble as it follows him everywhere he goes. From the very start he has the local religious zealot after him. That soon becomes a town and eventually a  whole army is chasing him. It’s kind of sweet how he and Viola look out for each other but saving him seems to be a full time (and very dangerous) job. There is also the added complication that he doesn’t actually know what a girl is at the start and treats them like an alien species.


3. Edward Cullen (Twilight Saga)

Bella may be “irrevocably in love with him” but she is clearly a bit of an idiot with no sense of self preservation. Firstly he’s a vampire who is a couple of hundred years older than she is. This means that not only is he older than her great, great grandfather (eww) he’s also technically dead and therefore a re animated corpse. He has killed a number of people in the past (serial killer) and kind of wants to kill Bella. He regularly breaks into her house at night to watch her sleep (creepy) and doesn’t mix with any of her friends.


4. Christian Grey (Fifty Shades)

I probably should have lumped him in with Edward as let’s face it they are pretty much the same character but Christian does at least have the benefit of being young and alive. He is however also a controlling, stalker who thinks nothing of running a detailed investigation into everyone he gets involved with. He has violent tendencies and is extremely secretive.

I honestly don’t know how Anastasia puts up with it 🙂


5. Edward Rochester (Jane Eyre)

Just to prove it’s not just modern men that are the issue I thought I should include one from a classic. I know that Jane isn’t exactly a catch for that time period but I’m fairly certain she could have done better. From the start he treats her atrociously. Pays her attention and makes her feel attractive before rudely dismissing her. He flirts with other women to make her jealous and impersonates a fortune teller to try to trick her.

When they do finally get together it turns out he already has a wife who he keeps locked in the attic, looked after by an incompetent alcoholic. His relationship with Jane isn’t the first time he’s been unfaithful to his wife. He’s already travelled the world hooking up with women all over the place. Apparently he’s not even that good looking (although I was a big fan of Michael Fassbender in the role).


6. Miles Archer (Ugly Love)

I don’t think I’ve ever really come across a character more able to mess with your head. In flashbacks he seems like a really sweet guy but in the present, not so much. Tate first meets him when he is passed out drunk in a hallway outside her flat. That should have been the first sign to run for the hills but no apparently he’s quite good looking so all is forgiven. They get involved but due to a past trauma he doesn’t want a proper relationship, he just wants to hook up occasionally. He never smiles, refuses to talk about his past or the future, gets jealous of any other guy, disappears for work for days at a time and generally just leaves you feeling used and abused.


7. Kaz (Six of Crows)

Yet another seriously messed up character with issues relating to a past trauma. He is clearly in love with Inej but refuses to admit it to himself or her. He’s a crook and a schemer, who treats her like a bit of a skivvy. To top it all off he has a fear of being touched and seems to be a bit OCD about it. Not the best basis for a happy relationship.


8. Will Traynor (Me Before You)

Lets face it any relationship with Will was doomed from the very start. He’s rude, miserable and generally a bit of a snob who tries to push everyone away. In fairness he’s dealing with a lot having recently been in an accident that left him a paraplegic but you’d have to be nuts to get involved with him.

It could only ever end in tears and sure enough it does.


So that’s my list. I kind of feel like I’ve been a little unfair picking on the guys. There are plenty of terrible book girlfriends too (Queen Levana from Fairest & America Singer from the Selection I’m looking at you) but that may be a topic for another list.

What do you think? Are these the worst ever book boyfriends or do you think there is anyone who should be on the list but isn’t?

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9 thoughts on “I Knew You Were Trouble

  1. Great topic! I actually love Todd and Kaz, despite them being troublesome at first – I like to think of it as complexity. Plus, they’re both halves of some amazing ships!

    Liked by 1 person

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