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My favorite romance novel – The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
The Fountainhead is an open wound and it makes not the slightest effort at having it covered or even treated. I remember having taken over a month to finish Rand's stellar title and when I finally put it down, I was aghast.

The book was an unthinkable assault to my unstable, feebly hormonal conscience and I hated it for having done to me what love affairs couldn't. It had taken me several remedial nights to recover and it is only after I gave up fighting 'The Fountainhead feeling' and gave in to the wreckage that I found something poorly resembling closure for the first time.

The Fountainhead had broken me beyond repair and it took me months before I realized that in the process it had made me stronger, the kind that only broken things can be. The Fountainhead was a storm in my life and it had shown me what it felt like to be a storm in your own. The Fountainhead is not the greatest romance. But it certainly is a great romance in ways that all romances are. It is a great romance for what it did to me as a reader.

The Fountainhead is essentially not a romance novel by parameters that romance novels are judged on. The man and the woman scarcely meet in the book and whenever they do they're either trying to resist each other or destroy each other. She said, "I could die for you. But I couldn't, and wouldn't, live for you."

He responded, "To say "I love you" one must know first how to say the "I"." Their love was a honey-trap. Other drugs didn't help and they liked it best when it hurt the worst. They did to each other what longing does to love. Theirs wasn't a beautiful love story, the kind that lights up rooms. It was conflicted, brutal, pained, bleeding, seeking, needy, rotten sick and real. He violated her, she bruised him, they played their twisted games of irrevocable want and distrust and they were equals in it.

Howard Roark and Dominique Francon loved and lost and became invincible, both in individual and deeply fastened capacity. Their love was the kind that beat itself up because it felt beautiful when it stopped. My favorite line from the novel still remains the one that peeks into Roark's state of mind, "He felt a violent pleasure, because she seemed too fragile to stand the brutality of what he was doing; and because she stood it so well."

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