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Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

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Love is in the air and books are on our minds this Valentine’s Day. Chocolates are nice, but these books about digital love, love lost, and love triangles have our hearts today. Here are some of our favorite book recommendations for literary romances.


After You
by Jojo Moyes

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t fall under the highly infectious spell of the onerous and brutally sarcastic Will Traynor. From his peculiar choice of greeting when meeting Louisa Clark to his scowls at anything remotely enjoyable she suggested—I couldn’t help it, I fell madly in love with the guy. And honestly, I think that’s the feeling Jojo Moyes’s ME BEFORE YOU was meant to evoke. But after a love like Will, what next?

Read Tolani Osan’s review here.

After You
Jojo Moyes

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t fall under the highly infectious spell of the onerous and brutally sarcastic Will Traynor. From his peculiar choice of greeting when meeting Louisa Clark to his scowls at anything remotely enjoyable she suggested—I couldn’t help it, I fell madly in love with the guy. And honestly, I think that’s the feeling Jojo Moyes’s ME BEFORE YOU was meant to evoke. But after a love like Will, what next?

Read Tolani Osan’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

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By Tolani Osan | January 11, 2017

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The Man of My Dreams
by Curtis Sittenfeld

The title THE MAN OF MY DREAMS may come off as another cute, chick-lit imagining of a young woman’s fantasies of adult companionship, but rather, it’s a tongue-in-cheek nod to Hannah’s deepest desire and fear: to know and feel what it would be like to love and be loved.

Read Kim Jaso’s review here.

The Man of My Dreams
Curtis Sittenfeld

The title THE MAN OF MY DREAMS may come off as another cute, chick-lit imagining of a young woman’s fantasies of adult companionship, but rather, it’s a tongue-in-cheek nod to Hannah’s deepest desire and fear: to know and feel what it would be like to love and be loved.

Read Kim Jaso’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

The Uncomfortable Reality of Coming of Age

By Kim Jaso | September 2, 2016

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Modern Romance
by Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg

Aziz Ansari blew my mind with his fresh meditation on dating, so accurate and affirming of all my trials and tribulations navigating the harrowing dating scene in New York City that it brought me to tears. Well, maybe not real tears, but my eyes were definitely watering as I attempted to hold back audible snorts of laughter while reading it on the subway.

Read Hilary Krutt’s review here.

Modern Romance
Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg

Aziz Ansari blew my mind with his fresh meditation on dating, so accurate and affirming of all my trials and tribulations navigating the harrowing dating scene in New York City that it brought me to tears. Well, maybe not real tears, but my eyes were definitely watering as I attempted to hold back audible snorts of laughter while reading it on the subway.

Read Hilary Krutt’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

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By Julianna Haubner | November 9, 2017

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By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

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By Erica Nelson | September 8, 2016

Soldier On, My Friends, Love Is Just a Swipe Away

By Hilary Krutt | July 13, 2016

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By Leora Bernstein | March 1, 2016

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Mrs. Poe
by Lynn Cullen

Lynn Cullen had me from the first paragraph.

“When given bad news, most women of my station can afford to slump onto their divans, their china cups slipping from their fingers to the carpet, their hair falling prettily from its pins, their 14 starched petticoats compacting with a plush crunch. I am not one of them.”

Read Juliette Fay’s review here.

Mrs. Poe
Lynn Cullen

Lynn Cullen had me from the first paragraph.

“When given bad news, most women of my station can afford to slump onto their divans, their china cups slipping from their fingers to the carpet, their hair falling prettily from its pins, their 14 starched petticoats compacting with a plush crunch. I am not one of them.”

Read Juliette Fay’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

A Page-Turning Reimagining of a Tantalizing Love Triangle

By Juliette Fay | June 17, 2016

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By Off the Shelf Staff | September 29, 2015

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By Caitlin Kleinschmidt | June 4, 2015

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By Caitlin Kleinschmidt | May 26, 2015

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On Chesil Beach
by Ian McEwan

It’s short, barely 200 pages, but every word in this lovingly rendered portrait is as meticulously placed as paint on a porcelain miniature. The story follows Edward and Florence, a young English couple on their wedding night during the pre–Sexual Revolution 1960s. While a plot about the events leading up to the consummation of a marriage might sound limited in scope or even ludicrous, in McEwan’s masterful hands, it’s riveting.

Read Lynn Cullen’s review here.

On Chesil Beach
Ian McEwan

It’s short, barely 200 pages, but every word in this lovingly rendered portrait is as meticulously placed as paint on a porcelain miniature. The story follows Edward and Florence, a young English couple on their wedding night during the pre–Sexual Revolution 1960s. While a plot about the events leading up to the consummation of a marriage might sound limited in scope or even ludicrous, in McEwan’s masterful hands, it’s riveting.

Read Lynn Cullen’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

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By Lynn Cullen | June 8, 2016

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A Moveable Feast
by Ernest Hemingway

A MOVEABLE FEAST is a love letter to La Ville Lumière and a testament to Hemingway’s boundless artistic ambition. Permeating every page is the heartbreaking story of love gained and lost.

Read Peter Golden’s review here.

A Moveable Feast
Ernest Hemingway

A MOVEABLE FEAST is a love letter to La Ville Lumière and a testament to Hemingway’s boundless artistic ambition. Permeating every page is the heartbreaking story of love gained and lost.

Read Peter Golden’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

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By Peter Golden | March 2, 2016

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By Off the Shelf Staff | October 23, 2014

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Brideshead Revisited
by Evelyn Waugh

Evelyn Waugh’s delicious coming-of-age tale of star-crossed lovers and sexually ambiguous pretty boys drinking their way through guilt trips over religion and lost love provided an admittedly romantic backdrop to my own rocky adolescent journey to adulthood.

Read Kerry Fiallo’s review here.

Brideshead Revisited
Evelyn Waugh

Evelyn Waugh’s delicious coming-of-age tale of star-crossed lovers and sexually ambiguous pretty boys drinking their way through guilt trips over religion and lost love provided an admittedly romantic backdrop to my own rocky adolescent journey to adulthood.

Read Kerry Fiallo’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

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By Off the Shelf Staff | August 9, 2017

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By Off the Shelf Staff | March 3, 2016

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By Kerry Fiallo | January 27, 2016

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The Rosie Project
by Graeme Simsion

The protagonist of Graeme Simsion’s romantic comedy THE ROSIE PROJECT is the most refreshingly unique, honest, and hilarious character I have read in a long time. I don’t generally read romantic comedies, but this one stole my heart right from the first paragraph.

Read Sarah Jane Abbott’s review here.

The Rosie Project
Graeme Simsion

The protagonist of Graeme Simsion’s romantic comedy THE ROSIE PROJECT is the most refreshingly unique, honest, and hilarious character I have read in a long time. I don’t generally read romantic comedies, but this one stole my heart right from the first paragraph.

Read Sarah Jane Abbott’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

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By Arielle Kane | November 25, 2016

It’s Our Birthday!

By Off the Shelf Staff | March 22, 2016

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By Erica Nelson | February 11, 2016

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By Julianna Haubner | June 30, 2015

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By Sarah Jane Abbott | June 26, 2015

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Euphoria
by Lily King

The engine that propels this juicy, smart novel is desire—sexual and intellectual, essential and existential.

Read Molly Prentiss’s review here.

Euphoria
Lily King

The engine that propels this juicy, smart novel is desire—sexual and intellectual, essential and existential.

Read Molly Prentiss’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

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By Off the Shelf Staff | December 27, 2016

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By Kathleen Grissom | April 18, 2016

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By Molly Prentiss | March 28, 2016

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By Leora Bernstein | January 21, 2016

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Outlander
by Diana Gabaldon

The relationship that blossoms from friendship to love between Claire and Jamie is, well, pretty swoon-worthy. Claire is confident with a lot of spunk and Jamie is hotheaded with a lot of heart. The combination of these two could be a recipe for disaster, but they—usually—are in harmony.

Read Kara O’Rourke’s review here.

Outlander
Diana Gabaldon

The relationship that blossoms from friendship to love between Claire and Jamie is, well, pretty swoon-worthy. Claire is confident with a lot of spunk and Jamie is hotheaded with a lot of heart. The combination of these two could be a recipe for disaster, but they—usually—are in harmony.

Read Kara O’Rourke’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

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Our Souls at Night
by Kent Haruf

Seventy-year-old widow Addie Moore makes a surprising proposal to her neighbor Louis Waters, a 70-year-old widower. What follows is the engaging story of two isolated people finding solace in each other’s company, falling in love, sharing memories, and reflecting on their lives—their joys, regrets, fears.

Read our review of OUR SOULS AT NIGHT here.

Our Souls at Night
Kent Haruf

Seventy-year-old widow Addie Moore makes a surprising proposal to her neighbor Louis Waters, a 70-year-old widower. What follows is the engaging story of two isolated people finding solace in each other’s company, falling in love, sharing memories, and reflecting on their lives—their joys, regrets, fears.

Read our review of OUR SOULS AT NIGHT here.

MENTIONED IN:

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By Julianna Haubner | November 9, 2017

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By A.J. Banner | January 4, 2017

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Eight Hundred Grapes
by Laura Dave

EIGHT HUNDRED GRAPES is escapist reading at its best because not only are there sun-dappled fields to picture, a dashing neighbor vying for Georgia’s attention, and behind-the-scenes winemaking (author Laura Dave took her wine research seriously!), there is also real heart.

Read Elizabeth Breeden’s review here.

Eight Hundred Grapes
Laura Dave

EIGHT HUNDRED GRAPES is escapist reading at its best because not only are there sun-dappled fields to picture, a dashing neighbor vying for Georgia’s attention, and behind-the-scenes winemaking (author Laura Dave took her wine research seriously!), there is also real heart.

Read Elizabeth Breeden’s review here.

MENTIONED IN:

Love Is In the Air and These 13 Books Are On Our Minds

By Off the Shelf Staff | February 14, 2017

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By Elizabeth Breeden | October 19, 2016

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Rules of Civility
by Amor Towles
With nods to F. Scott Fitzgerald and Edith Wharton, and a breathtaking Jamesian twist that blows up like a stick of dynamite, RULES OF CIVILITY is not only a thumping good story, it is also a perfect rendering of prewar New York City—a valentine to a glittering polished-steel-and-glass jewel that is long gone.
Rules of Civility
Amor Towles

On the last night of 1937, Katey Content encounters Tinker Grey in a Greenwich Village jazz bar. Though they come from completely different worlds, they forge a friendship that will last decades and bring Katey, with her sass, smarts, and sincerity, to the heights of New York society.

Read a review of RULES OF CIVILITY here.

MENTIONED IN:

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By Julianna Haubner | May 30, 2017

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By Wendy Sheanin | August 18, 2016

A Bookish Ride as Giddy and Delicious as a Dry Martini

By Wendy Lawless | May 9, 2016

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