Wednesday, February 10, 2010

RTW: Favorite moment of affection in YA

This was actually a really hard topic for me. Because it wasn't limited to romantic affection. There are so many great moments of affection in YA--between parents and children, siblings, friends, lovers, etc. But in the end, my favorite was a romantic one.


This is from The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman, the third book of the His Dark Materials trilogy. If you haven't read it...you should. Immediately. I don't think this is a very spoilery quote, but if you're worried, maybe skip it. Can't say I didn't warn you! It's from very, very near the end, and may or may not make sense if you haven't at least read The Golden Compass. Also, this scene makes me cry every time I read the book--not for this piece, but for other, sadder things. (Also I could have quoted a really longggg piece, but I just did the end of the scene.)



Will put his hand on hers. A new mood had taken hold of him, and he felt resolute and peaceful. Knowing exactly what he was doing and exactly what it would mean, he moved his hand from Lyra's wrist and stroked the red-gold fur of her daemon.
Lyra gasped. But her surprise was mixed with a pleasure so like the joy that flooded through her when she had put the fruit to his lips that she couldn't protest, because she was breathless. With a racing heart she responded in the same way: she put her hand on the silky warmth of Will's daemon, and as her fingers tightened in the fur, she knew that Will was feeling exactly what she was.
And she knew, too, that neither daemon would change now, having felt a lover's hands on them. These were their shapes for life: they would want no other.
So, wondering whether any lovers before them had made this blissful discovery, they lay together as the earth turned slowly and the moon and stars blazed above them.

So mainly why I love this: because combined with the whole scene, it's bittersweet--sad and happy. Also, as a couple, they are pretty much the embodiment of everything that's amazing about first love. And Will was my first literary love, back in the day when I was closer to his age (no one try to argue with me that this book is MG because of their ages! It is so not.)

It's just sweet, and subtly written. Sometimes, the best love isn't in-your-face love.

So what's your favorite moment of affection in a YA novel? Head on over to YA Highway to see what my wonderful co-bloggers said, and post a link to your own!

7 comments:

Emilia Joyce Plater said...

That's fantastic. Aw. Love, love, love the last line! I have to admit, my mind went to the wrong place with the word "daemon" since I haven't read the books, LOL, but I pushed those thoughts aside. :D

Kate Hart said...

Don't feel bad Emilia-- mine did too. LOL

V.M.Pettingill said...

I love that scene! It's beautiful! (I could see how someone who hasn't read it could take it in a very different way... even having read it it made me snicker a teeny bit!)

bclement412 said...

Beautiful scene! I need to read this book....

Kristin Miller said...

Aw, I knew you'd pick these two. And I still haven't read the books. *hangs head in shame*

Michelle Schusterman said...

I KNEW you'd pick this too! But really, they are just the sweetest couple.

stopdropandplot said...

Will was such a great character.