Gawwwddd preach! I do love this trope, but ain't nothing more jarring than seeing two folks spit venom at each other and literally make each other miserable just getting over the animosity within the span of a finger's width without anything actually changing between them or the, on a rarer note, valid reason for animosity gets glimpsed over (like what a waste of good material to draw out a journey of discovery :V.
For real though it's wild to be reading enemies to lovers and the thing that made them not like each other is super pedantic, even that can be worked on if we get some good development over time, but if I'm all likkeeee where's the incident that made them see each other different? Where are the new sides being revealed to clarify things between them? No conflict that they need to work together to figure out? No awkward middle ground where they feel conflicted about changing thoughts? Just ahh for some reason we are meant to be so why fight it...even if they literally hated each other, that's the last chapter's problem. We have a heat in our loins that forgives all. Like way to kill the catharsis that was building...
For sure animal attraction is legit and all, but if y'all really enemies ain't no way them issues gonna be solved overnight. Imma need that awkward middle ground and time to pass so the changes can sink in and morph offer time. Like a time skip can work, but I just feel it takes time for mindsets to grow and change when y'all been at each other's throats for who knows how long. Shoot, for me, if enemies to lovers don't have slow burn in it, it just don't seem right. Seeing the journey of how the venom stings turn into a panacea they rub on each other for some sensual healing is so dang satisfying.
Thinking back to my fav examples of this trope, Usually, one charter was at least aware of their attraction, but couldn't face it ie. Simon Snow Trilogy, or Love Hate and Clickbait, but when they both have equal levels of irritation for each other that over time soften and then more happens, talk about a GYAHHH moment haha. Forsaken Fae trilogy is the first that comes to mind. Talk about a slow burn boo, they made me wait till book 3, but I loved the struggle of getting there.
Shoot I should put my fav enemies to lovers reads in a list. What are some of your fave enemies to lovers? I'm open to comics and book recs always haha!