A Starter Kit of Reads for Romance Newbies

Posted by Sharon on February 10, 2020
Romance Week 2020

Want to dip your toes into the romance genre but don't know where to start? We've got you covered! And who better to match you with the perfect first read than the bestselling authors whose books make us cry, laugh, and blush?

We asked four of Goodreads' most beloved romance authors to put together a newbie starter kit for the popular subgenres they write: historical, contemporary, paranormal, and suspense. Their picks are chock-full of inventive premises, characters to cheer for, and steamy plotlines that will have you falling head over heels for romance in no time!  

Browse their choices below and add what catches your eye to your Want to Read shelf.

 

Historical
 

Tessa Dare has won just about every romance award in the industry with her compulsively readable historical romances. The Wallflower Wager, the latest book in her Girl Meets Duke series, was a 2019 Goodreads Choice Award nominee in the romance category. If you like your historical heroines on the unconventional side, check out Dare's Spindle Cove series, which presents a delightful society of Regency "spinsters" who are anything but shy and retiring.   

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Here's what Tessa Dare has to say about historical romance:

When people hear "historical romance," they often think of ladies swanning in watered silk gowns and lords brooding into their brandy.

But today's historical romance ranges beyond the ballrooms of London—encompassing diverse settings, characters, and voices.

Of course, no matter the era or author, these books all share a few things in common: sharp writing, deep emotion, and endings that affirm the power of love.


 

 
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If you love fearless heroines who change history, don’t miss this Civil War–set story of two spies for the Union army whose hearts and missions grow increasingly tangled as they work to foil a Confederate plot.


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A dramatic Cornwall landscape (think Poldark) is the backdrop for this irresistible take on Beauty and the Beast—complete with a reclusive "mad" scientist, a charming rogue, and an enchanting secret library.


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This stellar debut novel features a Victorian-era strong-willed suffragette to cheer for and an impossibly stubborn yet deliciously attractive Duke who will—eventually—earn your vote.


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If you love the opulence and cross-class tension of Regency’s London elite, you’ll be enthralled by this romance between an English lady and an American financier set in New York City’s Gilded Age.


Contemporary
 

Whether you're a fan of historical, sci-fi, or contemporary fiction, Alyssa Cole has written a romance you'll probably love. Her Civil War espionage tale An Extraordinary Union was the American Library Association's RUSA Best Romance for 2018, and The New York Times named A Princess in Theory one of its 100 Notable Books of 2018. Her newest release, How to Catch a Queen, which revisits the world of modern royalty first introduced in her Reluctant Royals series, hits shelves on May 26.  

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Here's what Alyssa Cole has to say about contemporary romance:

The world of contemporary romance is wide, varied, and filled with so many amazing books!

The four books I’ve chosen have elements that exemplify what an amazing romance can do.

These books made me laugh, cry, shout OH MY GOD WHAT ARE YOU DOING??!!!, blush (and make sure no one was reading over my shoulder), and feel the full-heart hug that comes along with a great romance.

Hopefully this starter kit is just the beginning of many amazing books in your future.

 

 
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If you like your books sweet, sexy, and brimming with humor, then X marks the spot for Treasure, a book about two young women who fall for each other after a chance meeting at a strip club and find love as they navigate college, family, and finding their place in the world.


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Fans of Dancing with the Stars will love Take the Lead, a fun, sexy romance where sparks fly when a veteran dancer determined to win a celebrity dance competition is paired with the reluctant (and hunky) star of an Alaskan wilderness reality show.


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If angst is your catnip, Luck of the Draw, in which a recent lottery winner tries to right past wrongs and falls for a growly paramedic in the process, is a meditation on love, grief, and atonement wrapped in delicious enemies-to-lovers and fake engagement goodness.


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If you’re looking for a rom-com that subverts both the billionaire and manic pixie-dream-girl tropes, check out Mr. Hotshot CEO, a hilarious and nuanced romance in which a workaholic CEO hires a woman to teach him to have fun and enjoy the little things in life, which she does while dealing with clinical depression.


 

Paranormal
 

Christine Feehan is one of the most prolific romance authors working today, with a whopping 83 titles and counting! Her paranormal books span elite psychic squadrons, sexy immortal beings, magical sisters, and much, much more! Not sure if paranormal romance is your thing? Feehan also writes suspenseful romance, and Vendetta Road, the latest installment of her biker-centric Torpedo Ice series, just came out.   

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Here's what Christine Feehan has to say about paranormal romance:

For me, there’s nothing like a Happily Ever After story full of breathtaking romance. These are the stories I find hard to put down.

I’ve always loved the fantastical, the unique, and unusual, so writing paranormal romance felt natural for me.

I invite you to check out my picks for Romance Week, most of which are paranormal, all of which I think you’ll love.


 



 
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Though an older book, this is the story that set me on my path to write paranormal. 

You should read this book if you like: paranormal-light, where the character’s gift isn’t the central theme but makes the story intriguing.


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I chose this book because I love a good action/adventure paranormal romance that grabs your attention and holds it.

You should read this book if you like: fast-paced, sexy paranormal with strong world-building.


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J.R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series is a longtime favorite of mine.

You should read this book if you like: to read an amazing long-running series with unique mythology, hard-edged bad boys who can be redeemed by love, and strong heroines.


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Two genres I am totally in love with: paranormal and historical.

You should read this book if you like: historical romance, action and adventure, sexy heroes, and amazing heroines.


 

Suspense
 

Lexi Blake knows all about subgenres, having written bestselling urban fantasy and corporate contemporary series in addition to romantic suspense that will leave you breathless. Check out Long Lost, out this month from her Masters and Mercenaries series, if you're a fan of the Bourne movies, military men, or edge-of-your-seat thrillers.    

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Here's what Lexi Blake has to say about suspenseful romance:

There is nothing I love more than a great romance with some pulse-pounding, edge-of-my-seat suspense. When I get a good romantic suspense in my hands, I can’t put it down.

A romantic suspense can transport you into a world of alpha heroes and badass heroines who won’t ever let the bad guys win.

Here are four of my recent favorites!



 

 
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The action in Every Last Breath is nonstop, but Rushdan doesn’t let the romance ever take a back seat.


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There’s nothing I love more than a woman-on-the-run story, and Zanetti does it to spectacular effect.


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A secret society, a smart heroine, and broody hot hero—expect great twists and turns in this absorbing novel.


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Solace Island is a wonderful combination of quirky rom-com and mystery.



Tell us which titles from this list you'd like to read and which books you'd recommend to beginner romance readers in the comments!

Check out the complete coverage of Romance Week, including:
Meet Today's Rising Stars of Romance
Top 100 Romance Novels on Goodreads
32 Swoonworthy Young Adult Books of the Last Decade

Comments Showing 1-50 of 100 (100 new)


message 1: by Robyn (new)

Robyn Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things when it's done well. And I do like a bit of yuri from time to time, though that feels like a lot less of an investment since you can finish a whole tankobon in an hour less, and it tends to aim for cute more so than sexy, so it occupies kind of an odd niche in my reading habits. Any recommendations?


message 2: by so-original (new)

so-original Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."
Check out one of Julia Quinn’s books then. Duke & I or When he was wicked or Romancing Mr Bridgerton got me into the genre.


message 3: by E (new)

E Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? ...it tends to aim for cute more so than sexy"

You might like to delve into contemporary "chick-lit." They are often humor and romance and are generally light on the heaving bosoms and bodice ripping - it's usually more focused on the relationship rather than sex. They tend to have a certain type of cover - lots are illustrated. Some authors to try are: Sophie Kinsella, Meg Cabot (her adult books), Christina Lauren (IIRC, they may feature more sex than some), Jennifer Crusie, etc.. Some more recent books that I haven't tried out are that might fit the genre are: The Flatshare, Something to Talk about (LGBT), The Bromance Book Club (I believe the book is mainly from the POV of men, so a bit unique) - just some ideas for starters.


message 4: by Jessica (new)

Jessica I really enjoy the genre of 'sports romance.' Do you have any recommendations for that area of writing or some authors?


message 5: by Robyn (new)

Robyn Thanks, E and so-original!


message 6: by E (new)

E Jessica wrote: "I really enjoy the genre of 'sports romance.' Do you have any recommendations for that area of writing or some authors?"

Urgh, there are a few authors who have some longer series following football and hockey teams, but I am blanking on the authors' names right now. You may have already read those, anyway. I haven't read this one, but The Bromance Book Club has a baseball player as one of the main characters, I believe. Hopefully someone who reads sports romance will chime in!


message 7: by Melissa (new)

Melissa Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."
Check out the Stalking Jack the Ripper Novel. It's a YA series that is based in horror but the flirting between the main character and her love interest is enjoyable. Because I agree with you, nothing here is anything I'd be willing to read but I enjoy a sprinkling of romance in non-romance-genre books.


message 8: by Fearne (new)

Fearne Hill Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."
The Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat. A sword and sandals epic. Some readers find the first couple of chapters a little shocking, but stick with it, because by the end of the third of the trilogy, your mind will be blown.


message 9: by Hilary (new)

Hilary Peyton Jessica wrote: "I really enjoy the genre of 'sports romance.' Do you have any recommendations for that area of writing or some authors?" Check out the Rusk University Novels by Cora Carmack. Also The One and Only by Emily Giffin.


message 10: by Hilary (new)

Hilary Peyton Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..." I am not sure that they are classified in the Romance genre, but check out Katherine Center and Abbi Waxman. Both have significant romance elements but more nuanced characters in my opinion. Also, JoJo Moyes may be a good option for you, her book "The Ship of Brides" is a historical fiction novel that was excellent if you want just a little romance with a great story.


message 11: by Jordan (new)

Jordan Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."
If you like Paranormal/UF or are interested in reading that genre, I'd try Ilona Andrews and Patricia Briggs. Both have series that have romance elements but they're not in the forefront (the Kate Daniels series by Andrews and the Mercy Thompson series by Briggs). They also have series that are centered more around the romance (Hidden Legacy or The Edge by Andrews or the Alpha & Omega series by Briggs).

If you like historical mysteries, both Sherry Thomas and Deanna Raybourn have series with elements of romance.


message 12: by Seantheaussie (new)

Seantheaussie Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold was the SF book with romance, that eventually convinced me to try actual romance books.


message 13: by Robyn (new)

Robyn Thanks, y'all! Seantheaussie, I *love* Vorkosigan; I especially like how they show that mature relationships take work. Would really like to read more in that vein.


message 14: by Betsy (new)

Betsy Robyn wrote: "Thanks, y'all! Seantheaussie, I *love* Vorkosigan; I especially like how they show that mature relationships take work. Would really like to read more in that vein."

You might try the In Death series by J.D. Robb, starting with Naked in Death. It's a mystery/crime series set in near future New York. The romance is important but it's not the primary mover of the book. And the series is more than 50 books long so it follows the romance into marriage and all the problems that a marriage can have. Still the crime solving is paramount. Trigger warning: rape is a frequent subject in this series.


message 15: by Robyn (new)

Robyn Thanks, Betsy! I had that recommended to me on another site as well, so I may start with it. Is the rape romanticized or excused? I don't mind rape in books as long as it is depicted correctly as a crime.


message 16: by Michelle (new)

Michelle Jessica wrote: "I really enjoy the genre of 'sports romance.' Do you have any recommendations for that area of writing or some authors?"

Sarina Bowen's hockey romances are great (first book in the series isRookie Move. Alexa Martin's Fumbled for football.


message 17: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

I adored Love Lettering by Kate Clyborn.


message 18: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Jessica wrote: "I really enjoy the genre of 'sports romance.' Do you have any recommendations for that area of writing or some authors?"

Jacob Chance, Helena Hunting, and Odette Stone are three of my favorite authors who write sports romance.


message 19: by Vic (new)

Vic Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

If you're into paranormal/ mystery, Simone St James books have been some of my favorites. The later the publication date, the more story line and less romance.


message 20: by shunnaoaddict (new)

shunnaoaddict Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Sandra Brown. I suggest checking out her criminal romance stories. I would suggest starting with Chill Factor, The Witness or my fave A Mirror Image.


Cheryl's Literary Corner AFK series by Patricia D. Eddy is a fantastic romantic suspense starter kit!! Away From Keyboard series is an amazing step into the wonderful reading genre of romantic suspense. Start your series now!!Patricia D. Eddy


message 22: by Ash (new)

Ash Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

What do you like about those romances? What makes you want to read more of them?


message 23: by Ann (new)

Ann Cheryl's Literary Corner wrote: "AFK series by Patricia D. Eddy is a fantastic romantic suspense starter kit!! Away From Keyboard series is an amazing step into the wonderful reading genre of romantic suspense. Start your series n..."

Cheryl's Literary Corner wrote: "AFK series by Patricia D. Eddy is a fantastic romantic suspense starter kit!! Away From Keyboard series is an amazing step into the wonderful reading genre of romantic suspense. Start your series n..."

This is a fabulous series. Ms. Eddy writes her books like watching lovies. The writing and storylines are superb! I highly recommend this author. She is a one-click author for me.


message 24: by Katie (new)

Katie Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Could I recommend the Away from Keyboard Series By Patricia D. Eddy :)


message 25: by Katie (new)

Katie Cheryl's Literary Corner wrote: "AFK series by Patricia D. Eddy is a fantastic romantic suspense starter kit!! Away From Keyboard series is an amazing step into the wonderful reading genre of romantic suspense. Start your series n..."
Absolutely! YES <3


message 26: by Eliana (new)

Eliana I absolute love Patricia Eddy's Away From Keyboard series, it grips you by the guts and never lets it go!


message 27: by Jannie Mitzeiko (new)

Jannie Mitzeiko I love the Patrcia Eddy's Away from Keyboard Series for some hot suspense romance with some angst and beautiful broken characters.

For Paranormal, you can't go wrong with Alicia Montgomery's True Mates Series and The Blackstone Series. Hot romance with very good plot keeps you coming back for more!


message 28: by Robyn (new)

Robyn Thanks, all.

Ash, I suppose because love is the only thing that makes life worth living, and characters being connected to each other romantically increases the stakes and makes you care about their outcome more. And I suppose because I appreciate when books reflect reality, and romance is part of reality. In the case of the Vorkosigan series, the second romantic arc later on really feels hard-won. Miles's pursuit of Ekaterin is touching because he has to take stock of and really humble himself to do right by her, and for Ekaterin, who has just come out of an abusive relationship, it's all about her reclaiming her autonomy and power, which rang very true and moving to me.


message 29: by TMR (new)

TMR These all sound awesome.


message 30: by Malvika (new)

Malvika Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Check out Jasmine Guillory's books!


message 31: by Kari (new)

Kari Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..." I would like to recommend Patricia D Eddy's series Away From Keyboard series. There is nothing fluffy about her romances. They are smart romances filled with gritty realism and suspense. She is also a master at character development....I have never been disappointed.


message 32: by Veronica (new)

Veronica Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Try Beth Flynn's - Nine Minutes books


message 33: by Imogen (last edited Feb 12, 2020 02:49PM) (new)

Imogen Jessica wrote: "I really enjoy the genre of 'sports romance.' Do you have any recommendations for that area of writing or some authors?"

You should try The Foxhole Court (All for the Game series) by Nora Sakavic. Is a trilogy about a university team that play a fictional sport similar to lacrosse mixed with ice hockey. The romance element is more in the last book but develops from enemies to lovers all the way through. It’s m|m. It also has a mafia element. It’s just an all round good story. You can often get the first book of the series for free from amazon as a kindle version.


message 34: by Jocelyne (new)

Jocelyne Cheryl's Literary Corner wrote: "AFK series by Patricia D. Eddy is a fantastic romantic suspense starter kit!! Away From Keyboard series is an amazing step into the wonderful reading genre of romantic suspense. Start your series n..."

I agree! I love this Series!!


message 35: by LectoraEstherica (last edited Feb 12, 2020 06:04AM) (new)

LectoraEstherica OMG, ALWAYS THE SAME PARANORMAL AUTHORS, I NEED NEW ONES!!


message 36: by Janelle (new)

Janelle Ong For y’all who are asking for more recommendations feel free to check out Colleen Hoover.


message 37: by Liz (new)

Liz McSpadden Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Katherine Center- things you save in a fire, and how to walk away are beautiful, and lots of sweetness, but nothing super rom com. I stumbled upon both of them accidently, and loved them.


message 38: by Fie (new)

Fie Toftdahl Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

I really enjoy reading the throne of glass series there is action mystery fantasy and romance and every single book in the series keeps getting better the farther into the series you come so I really recommend those books or just anything written by Sarah J. Maas


message 39: by kittykat (new)

kittykat So I think that there are 3 out of 20 that are indie books... please do better Goodreads.


message 40: by kittykat (new)

kittykat Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things when it's done well. ..."

OK, so long-ish response here.

I firmly believe that as the romance genre is (contrary to popular belief among readers not widely experienced in romance) so diverse, there is actually romance to suit all tastes, but it's often difficult to find them for a number of reasons including an inherent lack of understanding of the genre. So, before offering any recommendations, I would ask/offer you some questions/suggestions. Including why you're
* 'not interested in the genre' but
* 'enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things' and also what does
* 'done well' mean to you?
The last one, in particular, can all mean very different things to individual people. Also,
* why there is nothing listed above that tickles your fancy as there are lots of different tropes, character types and narratives at play.
* One suggestion is that you look past the romance aspect when you are considering romance books and pay attention to the secondary narrative and see if there is something that piques your interest.
* Another is to look at what you currently read and find tropes and plot points that you do enjoy and look for those within romance titles. Many are not genre-specific.

All of these things can help to define your reading taste in general, and if you are really interested in finding romance in your wheelhouse will help you to discover those titles.

I read a lot of romance, not always (just) for the romantic relationships portrayed, but quite often because of all the other dynamics at play;
* subverting damaging and/or old fashioned tropes, stereotypes, plot points, and character types, many of which, even some of the still popular ones, should die a death (but this is another conversation...)
* friendship groups, familial relationships and found families,
* socio-political themes and commentary and the voices of those previously ignored, erased or denied en-masse due to traditional industry 'standards' (again, a whole other conversation...)
* overcoming adversity, balancing challenging careers, families and love,
* thrilling mystery and suspense plots, fantasy elements and 'different' settings,
* sublimely ridiculous laugh out loud characters and/or plots,
* beautiful writing and character studies and
*sometimes just because there's cute (or not so cute!) kids and/or animals that play a significant part of the story... So you see, these are some of the ton of great reasons to read romance as well as for the central romantic relationships. It's also worth mentioning that I (and others) also like/dislike a lot of romance stories against the grain, and for opposite reasons to many readers; and sometimes it's because the romance is not the strongest element of the story to me.

And all of these things are some of the many more reasons why indie titles and authors, especially within the leading genre that is romance should be given more presence in these Goodreads lists.

Whew, presentation over. If you've managed to read all of it without falling asleep. GFY! 😆


message 41: by Cerenela (new)

Cerenela Hinostrosa Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

I'd recommend Colleen Hoover's It Ends with Us, it's a romance with a solid plot which not only involves romance.


message 42: by Cerenela (new)

Cerenela Hinostrosa Janelle wrote: "For y’all who are asking for more recommendations feel free to check out Colleen Hoover."

Totally agree.


message 43: by Robyn (last edited Feb 12, 2020 08:32AM) (new)

Robyn Not interested in the genre: it seems to be dominated by books that are either 1) tawdry, pornographic, stock photos of shirtless dudes on the cover or 2) rom-com cheesiness; and seemingly a predictable ending is a near requirement.

Why I enjoy romance otherwise: I suppose because love is the only thing that makes life worth living, and characters being connected to each other romantically increases the stakes and makes you care about their outcome more. And I suppose because I appreciate when books reflect reality, and romance is part of reality. In the case of the Vorkosigan series, the second romantic arc later on really feels hard-won. Miles's pursuit of Ekaterin is touching because he has to take stock of and really humble himself to do right by her, and for Ekaterin, who has just come out of an abusive relationship, it's all about her reclaiming her autonomy and power, which rang very true and moving to me.

Done well: meaning, there is some degree of realism; the relationship is believable and develops organically rather than being on plot rails or playing out well-worn tropes; neither pat nor excessively sentimental/"love conquers all".

As to why nothing tickles my fancy, part of it is probably that the romances are mostly heterosexual (probably I have seen too much TV and movies and it just seems excessively bland). Also, they seem to be obsessed with backwards, patriarchal settings and power imbalances, and I don't find anything sexy about alpha males. Also, while I understand romance is the genre, mostly they don't seem to have much else on offer BESIDES romance. The B-stories mostly sound very contrived. Some of the mysteries sounded OK, but star cops, judges, and other such types who I fervently hate.

The reasons you list for why you like romance are appealing for me too (well, except the kids. not a fan). I think the thing I most want to see is people working hard on relationships, sacrificing for each other, etc, versus the swept away by passion/first love type of stories.


message 44: by Linda (new)

Linda Hutchinson Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Any Christina Lauren book.


message 45: by Linda (new)

Linda Hutchinson Cerenela wrote: "Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance..."

Agreed on Colleen Hoover


message 46: by Jackie (new)

Jackie Needs more diversity. In particular, can anyone recommend something with a good plot, historical, rom-com, fantasy/sci-fi, or paranormal, involving lesbians?


message 47: by Lenora (new)

Lenora Rose Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

Alyssa Cole's A Princess in Theory and Jennifer Crusie's Faking It are the two books marketed as romances I would shove in the hands of non-romance readers. The former features a great scene where the Prince raised to be a diplomat assumes he can do a catering job because obviously anyone can do lower class work... ten minutes later, someone is on fire. The latter, a bit of an older work, features break-ins and heists, art forgery and criminal families (not the mob) and someone who might well have been hired as a hit man rooming in the back of the house.


message 48: by Lenora (new)

Lenora Rose Lenora wrote: "Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance..."
And as a point, seeing your elaboration, the covers don't always match the contents. Alpha males are far less represented than they look. And while my two picks here are hetero, both a few of the picks in the article above and the romance genre in general are getting more and more open to LGBTQ. (Try KJ Charles for steampunkish fantasy with m/m romances.)


message 49: by Lenora (new)

Lenora Rose Jackie wrote: "Needs more diversity. In particular, can anyone recommend something with a good plot, historical, rom-com, fantasy/sci-fi, or paranormal, involving lesbians?"

Olivia Waite's A Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics has come to me highly recommended, and I've bought it, but it's next on my to-read so i can't swear the rave reviews are right. Heather Rose Jones' Daughter of Mystery and related sequels are excellent low-magic fantasy-romances.


message 50: by Angie (new)

Angie Robyn wrote: "Are there any romance novels that are actually enjoyable by someone not particularly interested in the genre? Nothing here looks remotely appealing, yet I enjoy romance in non-romance-genre things ..."

I highly recommend Sheri Thomas's Lady Sherlock series for this type of thing.
https://www.amazon.com/Study-Scarlet-...


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