Being in love with the hero of a book is overrated. You’re playing it safe and you should admit it. The hero is supposed to represent greatness, loyalty, and teaches the reader how to be good. But would the hero die for you? No! And that is why the villain is much more appealing. The villain, who brings the reader a different type of loyalty and madness, never leaves us running dry. The villain, who would burn down the world for you without caring for anyone else, is the character you should be focusing on. This article will give you four examples of villains who are not as bad as the word makes them be, and who are much hotter than the hero. Here’s a guide for you, lovely beginners, on how to fall in love with the misunderstood villain.
Warning: Spoilers! Spoilers everywhere!
A Court of Thorns and Roses
Sarah J. Maas
Coming in at the front of this article is Rhysand. Rhysand is a character from A Court of Thorns and Roses series. He is one of the villains in the first book. But, since he’s in this article, is he really the villain at all? Rhysand has been a sexual toy to Amarantha, one of the main villains, for fifty years. He is seen as an arrogant, cunning man. His looks are as deadly as a tsunami and his charms are as destructible as an earthquake. However, when the main character, Feyre, is in need of help, he uses his powers to help her achieve what she truly wants. Not without a price, though. Remember- villain, not a hero. They made a deal that, in return for healing Feyre’s arm, she would spend two weeks every month at the Night Court if she makes it out alive. Moreover, Rhysand makes her wear thin, see-through slips that poorly manage to cover her body and forces her to dance and sit on his lap. Sounds degrading enough.
As Feyre is about to die, Rhysand uses his powers, even though in vain, to protect her. He claims that if she is going to die, at least she won’t perish alone. Doesn’t sound too villainy, does it? As victory claims its rightful place alongside Feyre, she relishes in her newfound freedom alongside her lover, Tamlin, and has a quiet, somewhat awkward conversation with Rhysand before he winnows away, leaving her confused. Feyre is set to marry Tamlin, but her constant nightmares threaten to destroy her. All of a sudden, she’s not so sure she wants to marry him. As Feyre is walking down the aisle, she wonders why Rhysand never tried to claim their deal. Why hadn’t he come for her? As she realizes she doesn’t want to get married, she begs in her mind for something, anything, that could stop the wedding and her impending doom.
Rhysand appears by her side in a second, winnowing them away to the Court of Nightmares, and their journey soon begins. Despite Rhysand being known as cunning, arrogant and cold, he lets Feyre see another side of him. The reader, just like Feyre, soon realizes that Rhysand isn’t what the world thinks he is. There is not even a bit of evil in him. Everything he did, like siding with Amarantha and being her play-toy, was simply a means to protect his people. He gave up his freedom for his people and loving friends. Even more so, we soon discover – MAJOR SPOILER ALERT – that the reason why Rhysand never tried to take Feyre as a part of their deal, was because he wanted her to be happy, despite knowing she was his life-long mate. Tamlin could never. This is Tamlin slander!
Casteel Da’Neer (Hawke)
From Blood and Ash
This man, I’m telling you. Casteel Da’Neer (Hawke) is the reason why fictional men are way better than actual real men. To start us off, he is gorgeous, athletic, kind, funny, and ironic. The holy mix. He is assigned as a bodyguard to our lovely main character Poppy, a maiden who is to be Ascended to the Gods. Being a maiden, Poppy is to remain completely untouched and pure as white snow. She will eventually be gifted to the Gods since she is the chosen one. Without telling you all of the story (because where’s the fun in that?), Hawke gets closer to Poppy as the story goes by, and their chemistry is off the charts. They bicker and sometimes can’t stand each other. However, they just can’t seem to stay away from one another.
Poppy is not your normal maiden. She was taught to fight and protect herself. Whenever there is a war in her front yard, she is there protecting herself and her loved ones. What does Hawke think about this? He gets very aroused every time Poppy fights or does something truly #girlboss (once more, what a man). Both know they can’t have anything with each other, but things slowly change as Poppy’s heart wavers and let itself be weak. As love threatens to grow, they give in to their desires, only for Poppy to discover that Hawke is none other than Casteel Da’Neer, the Dark One. The big villain. But is he really? Take this article as your sign to begin reading From Blood and Ash.
A Touch of Darkness
Scarlett St. Clair
Everyone knows the story of Hades and how much of a villain he is, but re-tellings always offer you a different point of view. Enter Persephone, daughter of Demeter and the Goddess of Spring hidden amongst lowly humans. The catch is that she is there by choice. Her powers, which should help blossom flowers, wither them instead. Persephone hates the world of the Gods. Among humans, she is worshipped and walks around like a celebrity, so she aims for self-perseverance and self-love. She strikes a job in journalism and tries to grow professionally so she can be free from her strict, controlling mother.
Tired of feeling controlled, Persephone embarks on her first rebellious choice – to attend Nevernight, run by none other than Hades. There, she enters a game with a devilishly handsome man, only to lose and discover she now had a deal with Hades himself. Hades was not only cunning, but he was murderous, harvesting the souls of the innocent who sought his help, and locking them up in the Underworld. Persephone feels betrayed and overall stupid for not seeing it coming, and she takes it upon herself to reveal, through her work, just how evil Hades truly is.
Hades proposes to Persephone a deal. If she makes her life in the Underworld, he will set her free. However, if she cannot achieve it within a limited period of time, Persephone will be a prisoner in the Underworld. As the Goddess of Spring begins her journey, she meets people who make her vision of Hades change. Is he truly the villain, or is that just the role the world gave him? Hades could break my heart and I would thank him. As love threatens to bloom, so does Persephone’s resolve. Read A Touch of Darkness to fall in love with what will become your favorite misunderstood villain.
Terms and Conditions
I am biased because I just finished this book a day ago, but Declan, De-clan…I might be in love. What starts off as a simple relationship between boss and employee turns into something that threatens to unravel the lives of both. Iris has been Declan’s assistant for three years, and that job left her with no friends, no happiness, and overall, no social life. She was set on proving to Declan just how worthy she was of having her job that she lost sight of what she truly wanted. On the other hand, Declan was born into a rich, troubling family. After his mother died, his father became an alcoholic and used violence on his own children. Declan grew detached from the world and his family, his personality consisting of nothing but coldness.
As Declan learns that he can only assure the position of the CEO of his family’s business if he settles to marry and have children, things quickly turn sour. Wanting to throw his father off his throne, Declan will do anything in his power to achieve those goals and show him who the best Kane truly is. Enter Iris, who works her tail off to find him a proper bride-to-be. But the contract expires in three years. In order to rise to CEO, Declan must marry and have a child during time. Leave it to Declan to intimidate the potential bride, who disappears during their engagement announcement. Not wanting to let her hard work go to waste, Iris says the only dumb thing she could say: she would become his wife.
Declan isn’t a fan of the idea at all, but with much to lose, both embark on the fake marriage trope, in which their personalities clash just as much as they bond together. I’m just saying that I truly love a man on his knees for a woman he longs for.
For more bookish content, head back over to Bookstr’s homepage here!