I'm exactly one chapter in to this month's Uppercase subscription book, and I've already deduced that the plucky but penniless mechanic and the haughty rich boy are going to end up in love. This is rather disturbing, because so far he has shown himself to be rude, classist, cruel, spoiled, selfish, etc. etc. etc. I'm sure that events will unfold so that we learn his tragic backstory*, and/or so that as he falls in love with our heroine, he learns to be kinder**. Or maybe it's all a front all along***, and he'll turn out to have been disguising his true noble nature.
Or I'm mistaken, and he's really going to be the bad guy. In real life, after all, if you are suddenly put into close working relationship with someone who was always a jerk to you when you were in school together, you grit your teeth, complain to your friends, and just try to get through without getting fired. But since this is a YA novel, if a strong male and strong female character clash in the first chapter--surely Cupid is hovering nearby.
I would love to be surprised. I know conflict builds drama, but come on. It's one thing if the initial dislike is caused by a different worldview, or a misunderstanding. But so far, it just sounds like the guy is an ass, so I really don't want to end up getting all mushy about him. I'm not complaning about this particular book though--after all, I've barely started it--so much as the pattern that exists, which is what's causing me to make this assumption. (And anyway, the fact that I assume a boy and girl meeting in chapter one means they are destined to be together implies some lack of variety in plotting.)
What are your thoughts about this "I hate you, wait, no, I love you!" romance convention?
* like Logan in Veronica Mars
** like Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice
*** like what's-his-face in Red Queen, or, depending on how you look at it, Bruce Wayne.