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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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. She asks him to spend nights with her in bed, just talking, since they are both alone. Louis agrees with some trepidation—and excitement. 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 A. J. Banner’s review here.

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.

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.

Read Wendy Lawless’s review here.