Author Picks: 7 LGBTQIA+ Love Stories to Make You Swoon

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Alison Cochrun is a high school English teacher living outside Portland, Oregon. The Charm Offensive is her debut novel. You can find her online at www.alisoncochrun.com, or on Instagram and Twitter @alisoncochrun.

Whether you’re a long-time lover of romance or new to the genre, it feels like we are living in the golden age of romantic comedy books! And I’m so excited to see more LGBTQIA+ love stories on those rom-com shelves! My debut queer romance, The Charm Offensive, came out last year, and my second novel, Kiss Her Once for Me, is out this fall from Atria. If you’re a fan of Red, White & Royal Blue or my first book, or you’re simply looking for more queer romances for your TBR, check out this list of some of my all-time favorites!

Boyfriend Material
by Alexis Hall

There’s a good chance you’ve already read this absolute stunner of an m/m romance, but in case you missed the genius of BOYFRIEND MATERIAL, I highly recommend this fake-dating gem! Irreverent British humor, hilarious banter, and one of the best stern brunch daddies in romance. Luc and Oliver are pure gold together, and bonus! There’s a sequel coming out in August called HUSBAND MATERIAL!

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Boyfriend Material
Alexis Hall

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Author Picks: 7 LGBTQIA+ Love Stories to Make You Swoon

By Alison Cochrun | February 1, 2022

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Chef's Kiss
by TJ Alexander

This book doesn’t come out until May 3, but you’ll want to preorder this unequivocal delight! Also set around the world of cooking and also featuring a nonbinary love interest, this novel features a grumpy-sunshine trope that will melt your heart. I love seeing more storylines featuring non-cis characters featured in mainstream romance, and this is an important addition to our genre!

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Chef's Kiss
TJ Alexander

A high-strung pastry chef’s professional goals are interrupted by an unexpected career transition and the introduction of her wildly attractive nonbinary kitchen manager in this deliciously fresh and witty queer rom-com.

Simone Larkspur is a perfectionist pastry expert with a dream job at The Discerning Chef, a venerable cookbook publisher in New York City. All she wants to do is create the perfect loaf of sourdough and develop recipes, but when The Discerning Chef decides to bring their brand into the 21st century by pivoting to video, Simone is thrust into the spotlight and finds herself failing at something for the first time in her life.

To make matters worse, Simone has to deal with Ray Lyton, the new test kitchen manager, whose obnoxious cheer and outgoing personality are like oil to Simone’s water. When Ray accidentally becomes a viral YouTube sensation with a series of homebrewing videos, their eccentric editor in chief forces Simone to work alongside the chipper upstart or else risk her beloved job. But the more they work together, the more Simone realizes her heart may be softening like butter for Ray.

Things get even more complicated when Ray comes out at work as nonbinary to mixed reactions—and Simone must choose between the career she fought so hard for and the person who just might take the cake (and her heart).

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MENTIONED IN:

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Take a Hint, Dani Brown
by Talia Hibbert

Talia Hibbert is the queen of rom-coms, flawlessly bending humor, heart, and so much steam, and Dani Brown is the bisexual heroine of my dreams! It’s an m/f pairing with another delicious fake-dating trope and an absolute cinnamon roll of a hero. I dare you not to fall for Dani and Zaf.

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Take a Hint, Dani Brown
Talia Hibbert

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Author Picks: 7 LGBTQIA+ Love Stories to Make You Swoon

By Alison Cochrun | February 1, 2022

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Delilah Green Doesn't Care
by Ashley Herring Blake

Not only does this book have an incredibly queer cover, but it’s perhaps my favorite sapphic romance of the year so far! Photographer Delilah Green returns to her small Oregon town to work at her evil stepsister Astrid’s wedding and reunites with high school mean girl Claire and sparks fly! Delilah is 100 percent my favorite book girlfriend. Comes out February 22, so pre-order now!

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Delilah Green Doesn't Care
Ashley Herring Blake

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MENTIONED IN:

10 Whimsical Stories That’ll Immerse You in a New Place

By Sara Roncero-Menendez | May 27, 2022

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By Chris Gaudio | May 26, 2022

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By Karen Bellovich | May 24, 2022

10 Supernatural Reads to Make You Shiver This Summer

By Maddie Ehrenreich | May 23, 2022

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I'm So (Not) Over You
by Kosoko Jackson

This one is also out on February 22! I’m a sucker for a second-chance romance, and this one is from the imagination of YA writer Kosoko Jackson. (This is his first adult romance!) Guaranteed to make you feel all the feels!

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I'm So (Not) Over You
Kosoko Jackson

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Author Picks: 7 LGBTQIA+ Love Stories to Make You Swoon

By Alison Cochrun | February 1, 2022

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It Had to Be You
by Georgia Clark

Love Actually, but make it queer and not problematic! I love Georgia Clark’s braided narratives centered around a New York City wedding-planning business in this book. Clark blends love stories of all kinds in this sweeping romance, and it contains a gorgeous coming-out story that meant so much to me.

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It Had to Be You
Georgia Clark

“The book-equivalent of a perfect first date... Highly highly recommend.” —Elin Hilderbrand, #1 New York Times bestselling author of 28 Summers

The author of the “emotional, hilarious, and thought-provoking” (People) novel The Bucket List returns with a witty and heartfelt romantic comedy featuring a wedding planner, her unexpected business partner, and their coworkers in a series of linked love stories—perfect for fans of Christina Lauren and Casey McQuiston.

For the past twenty years, Liv and Eliot Goldenhorn have run In Love in New York, Brooklyn’s beloved wedding-planning business. When Eliot dies unexpectedly, he even more unexpectedly leaves half of the business to his younger, blonder girlfriend, Savannah. Liv and Savannah are not a match made in heaven, to say the least. But what starts as a personal and professional nightmare transforms into something even savvy, cynical Liv Goldenhorn couldn’t begin to imagine.

It Had to Be You cleverly unites Liv, Savannah, and couples as diverse and unique as New York City itself, in a joyous Love-Actually-style braided narrative. The result is a smart, modern love story that truly speaks to our times. Second chances, secret romance, and steamy soul mates are front and center in this sexy, tender, and utterly charming rom-com.

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MENTIONED IN:

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By Sara Roncero-Menendez | May 27, 2022

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Sweepstakes: Enter for a Chance to Win 8 Summer Book Club Picks!

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Rediscovered Reviews: 6 Timeless Classics We Can’t Get Over

By Off the Shelf Staff | May 25, 2022

8 Tender Books with Characters You’ll Want to Hug

By Karen Bellovich | May 24, 2022

10 Supernatural Reads to Make You Shiver This Summer

By Maddie Ehrenreich | May 23, 2022

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Love & Other Disasters
by Anita Kelly

It’s not a secret I love romances set on reality dating shows, and this one about an openly nonbinary contestant on a cooking show like MasterChef falling for their female competitor is full of so much heart (and delicious food—don’t read hungry). Steamy, sweet, and swoony in equal parts! Highly recommend!

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Love & Other Disasters
Anita Kelly

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MENTIONED IN:

Author Picks: 7 LGBTQIA+ Love Stories to Make You Swoon

By Alison Cochrun | February 1, 2022

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Never Been Kissed
by Timothy Janovsky

Okay, it was almost impossible for me to narrow it down to just seven books, and there are so many new LGBTQIA+ titles coming out this year I wanted to recommend, but I absolutely have to shout out this To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before–inspired new-adult romance! It features a demisexual main character, and it’s so meaningful to see asexual-spectrum characters included in the romance genre! Comes out May 3! Don’t miss this one!

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Never Been Kissed
Timothy Janovsky

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MENTIONED IN:

Author Picks: 7 LGBTQIA+ Love Stories to Make You Swoon

By Alison Cochrun | February 1, 2022

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The Charm Offensive
by Alison Cochrun

CHARM OFFENSIVE is out now!

Dev Deshpande has always believed in fairy tales. So it’s no wonder then that he’s spent his career crafting them on the long-running reality dating show Ever After. As the most successful producer in the franchise’s history, Dev always scripts the perfect love story for his contestants, even as his own love life crashes and burns. But then the show casts disgraced tech wunderkind Charlie Winshaw as its star.

Charlie is far from the romantic Prince Charming Ever After expects. He doesn’t believe in true love, and only agreed to the show as a last-ditch effort to rehabilitate his image. In front of the cameras, he’s a stiff, anxious mess with no idea how to date twenty women on national television. Behind the scenes, he’s cold, awkward, and emotionally closed-off.

As Dev fights to get Charlie to connect with the contestants on a whirlwind, worldwide tour, they begin to open up to each other, and Charlie realizes he has better chemistry with Dev than with any of his female co-stars. But even reality TV has a script, and in order to find to happily ever after, they’ll have to reconsider whose love story gets told.

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The Charm Offensive
Alison Cochrun

In this witty and heartwarming romantic comedy—reminiscent of Red, White & Royal Blue and One to Watch—an awkward tech wunderkind on a reality dating show goes off-script when sparks fly with his producer.

Dev Deshpande has always believed in fairy tales. So it’s no wonder then that he’s spent his career crafting them on the long-running reality dating show Ever After. As the most successful producer in the franchise’s history, Dev always scripts the perfect love story for his contestants, even as his own love life crashes and burns. But then the show casts disgraced tech wunderkind Charlie Winshaw as its star.

Charlie is far from the romantic Prince Charming Ever After expects. He doesn’t believe in true love, and only agreed to the show as a last-ditch effort to rehabilitate his image. In front of the cameras, he’s a stiff, anxious mess with no idea how to date twenty women on national television. Behind the scenes, he’s cold, awkward, and emotionally closed-off.

As Dev fights to get Charlie to connect with the contestants on a whirlwind, worldwide tour, they begin to open up to each other, and Charlie realizes he has better chemistry with Dev than with any of his female co-stars. But even reality TV has a script, and in order to find to happily ever after, they’ll have to reconsider whose love story gets told.

Amazon logo Audible logo Barnes & Noble logo Books a Million logo Google Play logo iBooks logo iTunes logo Indiebound logo Kobo logo Kindle logo Bookshop logo Libro.fm logo

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Photo credit: iStock / Volodymyr_Plysiuk

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