If Books Could Date: The Most Incompatible Literary Couples [Vol. 2]

A continuation from If Books Could Date: The Most Incompatible Literary Couples [Vol. 1].

Book Covered in Flower Petals

6. Harry Potter (Harry Potter series) and Lisbeth Salander (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo)

Harry is the epitome of the heroic and moral young wizard, while Lisbeth is a hacker and social outcast who doesn’t mind bending or breaking the law to achieve justice. Just imagine Harry inviting Lisbeth to a Quidditch match, where she would likely respond by hacking the magical scoreboard to display cryptic messages about societal inequality. And you can bet she’d have strong words about the lack of cybersecurity at Hogwarts. As for Harry, he’d probably get a migraine just trying to keep up with Lisbeth’s complex revenge plots. He might be good at dueling, but what’s his stance on firewall penetration and ethical hacking?

7. Hermione Granger (Harry Potter series) and Patrick Bateman (American Psycho)

Hermione values justice, social equality, and academic excellence. Patrick Bateman values designer suits, status, and sadistic criminal activities. Hermione would organize S.P.E.W. (Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare) meetings, and Bateman would be more concerned about whether his business card is bone-colored or eggshell. Not to mention, Hermione would surely figure out that something’s amiss when Bateman asks her if she likes Huey Lewis and the News a little too enthusiastically. In fact, the second he starts waxing poetic about his skincare routine, Hermione would Apparate out of there faster than you can say “Aveda exfoliating gel scrub.”

8. Jane Eyre (Jane Eyre) and Tyler Durden (Fight Club)

Jane Eyre, the epitome of stoic, Victorian morality, meets Tyler Durden, the nihilistic alter-ego from “Fight Club,” who thrives on chaos and anarchy. Picture Jane showing up at one of Tyler’s underground fight clubs, where he’s talking about rejecting societal norms. Jane, baffled, would retort, “Sir, you are incomprehensible. This is not an acceptable manner of procuring a wife.” Tyler would probably try to recruit Jane into Project Mayhem, to which she’d calmly respond, “No, sir, I have more dignity than to engage in senseless acts of violence. And might I suggest, Mr. Durden, a cold bath and a good night’s sleep?”

9. Smeagol/Gollum (The Lord of the Rings) and Elizabeth Bennet (Pride and Prejudice)

Ah, where to begin? Elizabeth loves a good social event; Gollum despises “nasty hobbitses” and pretty much anyone else. Elizabeth enjoys long walks in the English countryside; Gollum prefers dark, damp caves. The awkwardness would reach peak levels when Elizabeth casually mentions her love for fine rings, sending Gollum into a manic obsession over his “precious.” And it’s tough to imagine what Lady Catherine de Bourgh would say upon meeting Elizabeth’s new suitor. “My dear Miss Bennet, have you lost all sense of propriety? This creature hisses!”

10. Captain Ahab (Moby-Dick) and Bridget Jones (Bridget Jones’s Diary)

Imagine Bridget Jones attempting to keep a diary aboard the Pequod. “Dear Diary, calories consumed 5,000—damn those sea biscuits—but have bigger problems. Ahab refuses to stop for directions and has been monologuing about a whale for 7 hours. Also, harpoons are not a girl’s best friend.” Ahab, singularly obsessed with catching Moby Dick, would hardly have time for Bridget’s concerns about calorie counts and finding Mr. Right. The relationship would inevitably go overboard, much like Ahab’s sanity, leaving Bridget to lament in her diary, “Must remember: never date a man more obsessed with a whale than with you.”

When Fictional Flames Fizzle

Another whirlwind tour of the literary dating scene, and oh, what a ride it’s been! These mismatched couples remind us that sometimes chemistry is more unpredictable than a plot twist in a telenovela. If love is a many-splendored thing, then surely it’s also a many-flawed one—especially when Cupid’s arrows land in the pages of entirely different books. While we might not see wedding bells ringing for these star-crossed (or perhaps more appropriately, genre-crossed) lovers anytime soon, they do make us ponder what it truly means to be compatible. Whether you’re a romantic or a realist, always remember: the course of true love never did run smooth—but in fiction, at least, it makes for some fantastically entertaining drama.