The Power Couples of Literature

I was inspired by yesterday’s Top Ten Tuesday about fictional couples in books coupled with explaining to my boyfriend the awesomeness of Jonathan Safran Foer and his very talented wife this weekend at the National Book Festival. How can so much talent be in one relationship?? It’s incredible to me. So here are four power couples in literature that I find awesome! I’m sure I’m missing some so feel free to share your favorites. Another thing I was wondering, are there any YA authors that are married? I didn’t come across any.

Jonathan Safran Foer & Nicole Krauss: So much talent in one relationship and they are both pretty young! I’ve read both of their books and loved them. I find their styles to be kind of similar but still distinct. I was sure that they helped each other along the way until I read an interview with Nicole that said they didn’t read each other’s until they were done. I found that interesting since I read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close /Everything is Illuminated and The History of Love right after one another and found them to be similar. I guess it’s because they have so much in common and come from similar backgrounds.  The way they met was pretty interest and proved to show their commonalities. They met through their publisher, when both of their first books were out, because Jonathan edited a book about the artist Joseph Cornell and Nicole had done her thesis about the same man.

F. Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald: Iconic! Literary legend F. Scott Fitzgerald and his beautiful wife–who was a FLAPPER and happened to write her own book. His work clearly is much more well known than hers but they were an “it” couple for sure! I’m kind of obsessed with the Roaring Twenties so this couple fascinates me. I’ve only read The Great Gatsby but I plan on reading his other works and perhaps picking up hers. Their story is so tragic but with so much beauty embedded in it. If you don’t know anything about you should definitely read up on their story!

Sylvia Plath & Ted Hughes: Ultimate tragic couple yet very talented. Even though I love Sylvia, I would venture to say that Ted was more talented. Sylvia’s life is so tragic to me especially as The Bell Jar is a really important book to me as I read it at a difficult time in my life. Ted’s life is pretty sad, too. Perhaps not the happiest couple but it was real. They met at Cambridge and were married after four months. They separated after 5 or 6 years because Ted had  lover  (a friend of Sylvia’s), Sylvia committed suicide, Ted lived with his lover, she killed their toddler and then committed suicide in the same fashion as Sylvia. So sad! I do believe that Ted married again though. They are so well known and it’s unfortunate that it is more surrounding their tragedy rather than their work. They really did love each other in the beginning and apparently supported/encouraged each others writings from articles I’ve read.

Percy Bysshe and Mary Shelley: After reading Frankenstein and Percy’s poetry in my British Literature course in college I really loved this couple. They were youngens, although I guess that was typical of the times.  Percy married his first wife at 19 and left her and the baby after three years and fell in love with Mary who was 16 at the time. They were married a couple of years later. I just love this pair so much and love both of their works deeply. Perhaps even as much as I love JSF and Nicole Krauss.

Honorable Mentions:

Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Zadie Smith and Nick Laird
Geraldine Brooks and Tony Horwitz
Pat Conroy and Karen Kingsbury

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 30 year old married lady who is in denial that she’s actually that old. When she’s not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, listening to music with oversized headphones and having adventures with her husband and dog.


  1. Definitely read Fitzgerald's Tender is the Night!

  2. I plan too! I heard it's really great! I loved Gatsby but I don't want that to be the only book I read by him.

  3. I love this! I didn't even know that JSF and Nicole Krauss were together! I'm so behind on my lit gossip 🙂

  4. I love this list! Like you, I didn't know Krauss and Foer were married until I finished the History of Love. I also thought they were similar!

    Thanks for this list. Great idea!

  5. Awww, this is an adorable list.
    I love that you included Krauss and Foer. I always thought it was interesting that they had written Everything is Illuminated and History of Love before they had met. Their styles are so hauntingly similar.

    Thanks for the great post, I'm a new follower

  6. Sash and Em says:

    Eeep! Okay, I know this post is old but I feel the need to add in a YA Couple! Katherine Applegate aka K.A. Applegate, writer of Animorphs and Everworld, and Michael Grant, writer of the Gone series are happily MAWWIED. 🙂 Two great writers! Animorphs and Everworld were two of my favorite series are a kid and although I haven't read the Gone series, I think it's great that their couple-ship is still making great YA books!

  7. Zelda wrote a book?? Who knew! I definitely have to pick that one up soon. I love The Great Gatsby and I read This Side of Paradise, which was very different and (in my opinion) good, but not as fantastic as Gatsby. It’s interesting, though, because it’s so autobiographical, but it’s worth a read!

  8. Ayelet Waldman and Michael Chabon!