Love is in the air! Or at least, love is in your favorite bookstore on August 19—a date otherwise known as Bookstore Romance Day! This special day began as a way to strengthen the relationships between independent bookstores and romance enthusiasts; and now, as the fifth annual celebration is coming up, this day is a great opportunity for you to fall head over heels with new books about love! These recommendations are even better than usual because they aren’t one-off stories but instead are series that tell tales of enduring or thematic romance. Whether you’re interested in collecting an entire new set of books or are simply looking to delve into something slightly outside of your comfort zone, these novels will have you struck by Cupid’s bow!
Sky’s life changes when she meets Dean in this young romance that is reminiscent of world-shattering, naive-yet-hopeful high school first relationships. The Hopeless series captures the nuances of what it’s like to love when you’re seventeen, and HOPELESS is just the swoon-worthy introduction to such undeniable chemistry. Sky is a relatable protagonist with her humor, authenticity, and bravery through it all, which pairs well against Dean’s moody and mysterious bad boy vibes. Though it feels classic and heartwarming, HOPELESS also features twists, drama, and secrets that Sky and Dean must learn to navigate. And even when there are clearly times in this boy-meets-girl story when things seem rather “hopeless,” their love for each other finds a way to survive.
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of All Your Perfects and It Ends With Us comes the beginning of Sky and Dean’s passionate love story—where well-kept secrets threaten to opens wounds of a dark past.
Would you rather know a truth that makes you feel hopeless, or keep believing the lies?
Beloved and bestselling author Colleen Hoover returns with the spellbinding story of two young people with devastating pasts who embark on a passionate, intriguing journey to discover the lessons of life, love, trust—and above all, the healing power that only truth can bring.
Sky, a senior in high school, meets Dean Holder, a guy with a promiscuous reputation that rivals her own. From their very first encounter, he terrifies and captivates her. Something about him sparks memories of her deeply troubled past, a time she’s tried so hard to bury. Though Sky is determined to stay far away from him, his unwavering pursuit and enigmatic smile break down her defenses and the intensity of the bond between them grows. But the mysterious Holder has been keeping secrets of his own, and once they are revealed, Sky is changed forever and her ability to trust may be a casualty of the truth.
Only by courageously facing the stark revelations can Sky and Holder hope to heal their emotional scars and find a way to live and love without boundaries. Hopeless is a novel that will leave you breathless, entranced, and remembering your own first love.
Martha Waters’s The Regency Vows series will take you back in time to an era of sophistication, elegance, and refinement, but the relationships of Regency England may not be all that. In fact, the first novel of the set, TO HAVE AND TO HOAX, is the tale of an obnoxious and immature yet witty and begrudgingly lovable couple who claim to hate each other despite the clear chemistry and attraction they share. Lady Violet Grey and Lord James Audley married for love but have become estranged just one short year later, and in shared stubbornness to admit desire for rekindling, both create ridiculous situations in which the other must come to their rescue. It’s equal parts silly and realistic to how those who are clearly in love can be scared of vulnerability and rejection. This artfully absurd story is just the beginning of a rom-com historical fiction series that is perfect for any mood you may be in!
Named a Best Romance of April by Goodreads, Popsugar, Bustle, and more!
“A laugh out loud Regency romp—if you loved the Bridgertons, you’ll adore To Have and to Hoax!” —Lauren Willig, New York Times bestselling author
In this fresh and hilarious historical rom-com, an estranged husband and wife in Regency England feign accidents and illness in an attempt to gain attention—and maybe just win each other back in the process.
Five years ago, Lady Violet Grey and Lord James Audley met, fell in love, and got married. Four years ago, they had a fight to end all fights, and have barely spoken since.
Their once-passionate love match has been reduced to one of cold, detached politeness. But when Violet receives a letter that James has been thrown from his horse and rendered unconscious at their country estate, she races to be by his side—only to discover him alive and well at a tavern, and completely unaware of her concern. She’s outraged. He’s confused. And the distance between them has never been more apparent.
Wanting to teach her estranged husband a lesson, Violet decides to feign an illness of her own. James quickly sees through it, but he decides to play along in an ever-escalating game of manipulation, featuring actors masquerading as doctors, threats of Swiss sanitariums, faux mistresses—and a lot of flirtation between a husband and wife who might not hate each other as much as they thought. Will the two be able to overcome four years of hurt or will they continue to deny the spark between them?
With charm, wit, and heart in spades, To Have and to Hoax is a fresh and eminently entertaining romantic comedy—perfect for fans of Jasmine Guillory and Julia Quinn.
If you’re looking for a fresh take on classic fairy-tale love stories, the Reluctant Royals series by Alyssa Cole will give you something to obsess about! The first book, A PRINCESS IN THEORY, is a modern twist on the well-known Cinderella story. Our heroine, Naledi, is not a step-daughter-turned-maid in a fancy mansion but a typical everyday girl who, between juggling school, work, and other responsibilities, does not have the time to even think about romance. Meanwhile, the Prince of Thesolo is working hard to track Naledi down, as he wishes for her hand in marriage since she, unbeknownst to her, has been betrothed to him since childhood. However, the prince is determined to make her fall in love with him for who he is, not for his title, and watching their pure adoration for each other develop is enough to make every girl believe there is a Prince Charming out there for her as well!
Sharing a name with the series of scrumptious, queer, foodie rom-coms it comes from, CHEF’S KISS is a charming introduction to all the love that can blossom in a restaurant kitchen. Simone is a bit prickly and a lot intense when she’s at work, but to be fair, her pastries speak for themselves. However, when Ray, a nonbinary human form of a ball of sunshine, becomes her new kitchen manager, Simone’s grumpy attitude only gets worse—but not for the reasons you’d think. Yes, their chipper energy does get on her nerves, but for some reason, she finds herself very begrudgingly attracted to them as well. In some ways, this series is lighthearted and fun, but CHEF’S KISS is more than just a fluffy romance through its discussion of tough topics like discrimination and what it means to be queer.
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).
Business is business, especially on Wall Street, where stakes are high and people are intense. Everyone in the Beautiful Bastard series is a cutthroat and ambitious arsehole, but sometimes, that energy is exactly what makes a romance tense and irresistible. The first installment of this series, BEAUTIFUL BASTARD, follows the scandalous relationship between a determined MBA student intern, Chloe, and her no-nonsense, inconsiderate, and infuriating—albeit, handsome—boss, Bennett. Though he’s the source of every problem and inconvenience Chloe has in and out of the workplace, he’s also the object of her every desire, even if she refuses to admit it. This is a steamy novel, of an even steamier series, that will definitely get your blood boiling!
An ambitious intern. A perfectionist executive. And a whole lot of name calling. Discover the story that garnered more than two million reads online.Whip-smart, hardworking, and on her way to an MBA, Chloe Mills has only one problem: her boss, Bennett Ryan. He’s exacting, blunt, inconsiderate—and completely irresistible. A Beautiful Bastard. Bennett has returned to Chicago from France to take a vital role in his family’s massive media business. He never expected that the assistant who’d been helping him from abroad was the gorgeous, innocently provocative—completely infuriating—creature he now has to see every day. Despite the rumors, he’s never been one for a workplace hookup. But Chloe’s so tempting he’s willing to bend the rules—or outright smash them—if it means he can have her. All over the office As their appetites for one another increase to a breaking point, Bennett and Chloe must decide exactly what they’re willing to lose in order to win each other. Originally only available online as The Office by tby789—and garnering over 2 million reads on fanfiction sites—Beautiful Bastard has been extensively updated for re-release.
This popular collection of romance novels, the Pine Creek Highlanders series by Janet Chapman, follows the fantastical time-traveling adventures of Scottish Highlanders in modern-day America who are looking for love. The introductory novel, CHARMING THE HIGHLANDER, is a steamy romance between Greylen MacKeage, laird of the MacKeage clan, and his slow-burn courtship of his match, Grace Sutter. The two must overcome their differences and the challenges of everyday life in order to be with each other, but the magic of love alongside actual druid magic makes it all possible.
The first in a sexy, adventurous trilogy featuring a medieval Scottish clan transported through time to modern-day Maine by a matchmaking wizard—from the New York Times bestselling author of the Spellbound Falls series.
When a plane crash strands brilliant scientist Grace Sutter on an icy mountaintop in Maine, she finds herself alone in the wilderness with the only other surviving passenger—Greylen MacKeage,a sexy, medieval warrior who’s been tossed through time to find the woman he’s destined to love.
Forced together to survive the harsh, wintry landscape, neither expects the fierce passion that flares between them. But Grace is not used to letting her heart take control, and Greylen will settle for nothing less than her heart’s surrender.
Ten Tiny Breaths, the series, features enduring love stories in the face of tragedies, reminding us that even in the worst of situations, there can be a silver lining. TEN TINY BREATHS, the first novel of the collection, dives deep into this theme—literally, as Kacey feels like she is simply drowning in an endless ocean when a freak accident kills her parents, best friend, and boyfriend all in one sick swoop. She can’t imagine how life could possibly go on, but years later, when she moves away and ends up next door to a man named Trent, she finds herself finally able to breathe. Being with him is like coming up for air after fighting to stay afloat in a treacherous sea, but ultimately, she doesn’t know if she’s ready to let someone new in. If you’re looking for powerful, emotional, and revitalizing love, Ten Tiny Breaths is an amazing series to invest in.
After a terrible car accident destroys her life as she knew it, twenty-year-old Kacey escapes to Florida, where she encounters an irresistible man determined to capture her wounded heart.
Just breathe, Kacey. Ten tiny breaths. Seize them. Feel them. Love them.
Four years ago, Kacey Cleary’s life imploded when her car was hit by a drunk driver, killing her parents, boyfriend, and best friend. Still haunted by memories of being trapped inside, listening to her mother take her last breath, Kacey wants to leave her past behind. Armed with two bus tickets, Kacey and her fifteen-year-old sister, Livie, escape Grand Rapids, Michigan, to start over in Miami. They’re struggling to make ends meet at first, but Kacey’s not worried. She can handle anything—anything but her mysterious neighbor in apartment 1D.
Trent Emerson has smoldering blue eyes and deep dimples, and perfectly skates that irresistible line between nice guy and bad boy. Hardened by her tragic past, Kacey is determined to keep everyone at a distance, but their mutual attraction is undeniable, and Trent is desperate to find a way into Kacey’s guarded heart—even if it means revealing an explosive secret that could shatter both their worlds.
Meddelin Chan is a typical Asian girl when it comes to her large, tight-knit family of aunties who will always have her back; however, when it comes to her accidental murder of her blind date, her life is anything but typical. The Aunties series begins with DIAL A FOR AUNTIES, where Meddy must juggle covering up the crime, running the family wedding-planning business, and charming the ex she never got over—thankfully, her crazy family is right there to help her through the trials and tribulations! It’s a silly yet heartwarming, culturally emphatic, and simply fun series that will make you feel like you’re another auntie of the Chan family!
Glitz and glam is to be expected in The Hollywood Series by Jackie Collins, where each of the five novels in this set follows the scandalous lives of famous and fabulous women as they try to navigate their relationships in the limelight. The original novel, HOLLYWOOD WIVES, has been recently reprinted in celebration of its fortieth anniversary and is the quintessential escapist romance novel. Elaine, Angel, and Montana seem to have it all as wives of esteemed actors, but that is simply because they work overtime to cover up the hidden lovers, messy problems, and secret fantasies that lie beneath the surface. At this point, with all the optics that need to be maintained in Hollywood, what even is love? Scandalous, to say the least!
Celebrate the fortieth anniversary of Jackie Collins’s Hollywood Wives with this gorgeous special edition, the first title in the iconic Hollywood series from the #1 New York Times bestselling author and “queen of sexy stories” (Daily Mirror, London).
They’re a privileged breed—glamorous, glossy, and demanding. When life is this fast, there are no guarantees. Status is everything, and you’re only ever as popular as your husband’s latest box-office hit.
Elaine Conti: Bronx girl turned Hollywood hostess, determined to relaunch her husband’s fading acting career back into orbit.
Angel Hudson: Married to a hot young actor and an innocent beauty prey to Hollywood’s most unscrupulous men.
Montana Grey: Gorgeous renegade, ambitiously driven to succeed in the male-dominated world on the other side of the camera.
Hollywood Wives is a scorching blockbuster that exposes the glittering microcosm that is Beverly Hills before racing to a gripping and unexpected climax. Captivating, fun, and deliciously sexy, this classic is its own version of Hollywood magic.
If you’re looking for darkness, love, and, above all else, vampires, the Black Dagger Brotherhood series is a great alternative to the Twilight Saga that brings freshness to the paranormal romance genre. DARK LOVER introduces the main vampire, a purebred and last of his kind, Wrath, whose mission to kill the slayers who slew his parents is derailed when he meets an intoxicating yet unassuming woman named Beth. The two are both enamored with each other in this series that puts every woman’s romantic fantasies into words, but ultimately, Beth is now Wrath’s only weakness—a fact that his enemies are all aware of now. Can Wrath still protect the Black Dagger Brotherhood? Or will his newfound love reframe what is actually important to him?
Photo credit: iStock / Albert Cabezas