Books about unrequited love?
April 27, 2004 12:48 AM   Subscribe

I've just finished both David Gilmour's Sparrow Nights and Scott Spencer's Endless Love, each for the second time. They're even better than I remember them. What's your favorite book about unrequited love? I'd like to keep up the streak.
posted by dobbs to Media & Arts (17 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
They're not exactly about unrequited love, but Talking it Over and Love Etc by Julian Barnes are suitably obsessive.

Endless Love really is a great book.
posted by dydecker at 5:00 AM on April 27, 2004

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton is a classic. It's a bit more complex than unrequited love but it's definitely a big part of it. It's very readable.
posted by jeremias at 6:20 AM on April 27, 2004 [1 favorite]

Exquisite Corpse by Robert Irwin. A genuinely great book that transposes a history of 1930s surrealism, the second world war and one man's all-consuming romantic obsession. A book so good that even thinking about it makes me want to hug myself.
posted by Hartster at 7:39 AM on April 27, 2004

love in the time of cholera and of human bondage.

i'd also throw gone with the wind in there, just because.
posted by crush-onastick at 7:46 AM on April 27, 2004

Gödel Escher, Bach

What? Oh, fine then, Rushdie's The Ground Beneath Her Feet.
posted by Capn at 7:54 AM on April 27, 2004

Norwegian Wood, Haruki Murakami.
posted by Jeanne at 8:09 AM on April 27, 2004

As She Climbed Across the Table by Jonathan Lethem. Assuming you don't mind some physics in your love story.
posted by cortex at 8:35 AM on April 27, 2004

Eugénie Grandet, Balzac
posted by plexi at 8:51 AM on April 27, 2004

Art and Lies, Jeanette Winterson
posted by batboy at 9:29 AM on April 27, 2004

The Gold Bug Variations by Richard Powers. It's also about genetics and pianos.
posted by sad_otter at 9:42 AM on April 27, 2004

I Capture the Castle, by Dodie Smith. (Made into a not particularly good movie a few years ago.)
posted by JanetLand at 3:06 PM on April 27, 2004

i'll second Love in the Time of Cholera, and Ground Beneath Her Feet.

And i'll throw in The Notorious Dr. August by Christopher Bram
posted by amberglow at 4:00 PM on April 27, 2004

JP Donleavy, A Singular Man.
posted by Gortuk at 4:30 PM on April 27, 2004

Not a favorite at all (actually I loathed it), but Powers' "Galatea 2.2" may address your needs.

ps: those who say Love in the Time of Cholera is about "unrequited" love have probably not finished the novel.
posted by 111 at 4:40 PM on April 27, 2004

The Gold Bug Variations is one of my top ten all time books. It has a smartie librarian in it. Also, for a sort of unrequited-anything feel to it, I suggest The Lovely Bones by Alice Seybold. Sad, poignant and gripping, it's narrated almost entirely by a young girl who is murdered in the first few pages of the book. She spends the next few decades watching her family age and grow and disintegrate, and she spies on the first boy she ever kissed who in some strange way she never quite gets over.
posted by jessamyn at 4:40 PM on April 27, 2004

Wuthering Heights is exquisitely painful.
posted by Khalad at 4:46 PM on April 27, 2004

Response by poster: Thanks, all!
posted by dobbs at 8:16 PM on April 27, 2004

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