recommendations

Valentine’s Books for Every Kind of Reader

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Hello lovelies! How are you? I hope you’ve had a wonderful weekend! As you all know, I can’t resist a theme and Valentine’s Day is no exception. My plan was to do one Valentine’s themed post for Valentine’s day.  But then I started brainstorming and then I had 7 ideas for posts and I couldn’t decide which one to write, so I wrote all of them. So if you don’t want a romance overload, consider this your fair warning that this blog is going to be all love hearts and pink roses for a week. There will be posts about romance tropes, book couples, quizzes and more… But first there’s today’s post which is all about Valentine’s Day reads for every kind of reader, even those who aren’t that into romance. I promise.

LITERARY FICTION

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The Lesser Bohemians by Eimear McBride

The Lesser Bohemians is one of my favorite love stories. It follows a young Irish woman who moves to London to pursue a acting career and gets involved with an older, successful actor. Their relationship is messy and complicated, but fascinating to read about.

Strange Weather in Tokyo  by Hiromi Kawakami

This is a low-key off-beat love story set in Tokyo, about a woman who runs into her former Japanese teacher in a bar and the friendship they develop, which slowly blooms into something else.

Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney

It’s not a romance novel, but it is a book about romantic relationships and modern love. It focuses on the tangled relationships between four people, two young women who are best friend and also exes, and the married couple they become involved with.

YA

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Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi

If you like your YA romance with a little more edge, this one’s perfect for you. It follows Penny, a aspiring writer and Sam, an aspiring documentary maker. Their relationship is a slow burn, which develops mostly through (really cute) texts.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

I couldn’t do a Valentine’s themed post and not include this book. It’s one of the cutest YA contemporaries out there and has one of the cutest romances. If you don’t know what it’s about by now: it follows a girl who’s secret love letters get mailed to all her crushes.

Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour 

This is a really sweet and fluffy f/f love story about a girl who dreams of becoming a set designer and the granddaughter of a Hollywood icon finding love in Hollywood one summer.

LGBTQ+

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The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee

This epic friends to lovers m/m romance is a wild ride through 17th century Europe, full of adventures, misadventures and pining. So much pining, guys.

Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

The best thing about this book is that you get two love stories for the price of one! It’s told from the dual POV’s of two best friends as they attend a con and fall in love. One of the main romances is f/f, the other is friends to lovers.

Tash Hearts Tolstoy by Kathryn Ormsbee

Repeat after me: Asexual and aromatics are queer. This friends to lovers YA romance follows a Youtuber who’s romantic asexual and struggling with how to navigate dating and relationships and her sexuality.

ROMANCE

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 The Blind Kiss by Renee Carlino

This book has a 90’s indie movie feel I always fall for. If you like anything with Ethan Hawke in it, you’re going to love this story about two people who meet in college and fall in angsty, messy love which take them decades to figure out.

Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid

I could’ve put any Taylor Jenkins Reid novel on this list, but I went with this contemporary romance with a fun narrative twist. On  a night out a woman reconnects with her ex, she either goes home with him or doesn’t – and we get so see both timelines play out.

Say Yes to the Marquess by Tessa Dare 

I think the best way to describe Tessa Dare’s books is sexy and sweet historical rom-coms. This one’s about a woman who wants to break off her engagement, a prizefighter hellbent on planning her wedding and a lot of cake.

CLASSICS

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Emma by Jane Austen

Emma’s my favorite Austen novel, my favorite classic and my favorite love story. It’s about a girl who likes to meddle in other people’s love life, but is pretty clueless about her own feelings for her good friend, Mr. Knightly.

North & South by Elizabeth Gaskell

If you’ve already read all of Jane Austen’s books and you want more Victorian love stories – you need some Elizabeth Gaskell in your life. North & South is my favorite of hers and the heroine and hero have dynamic that’s very similar to Lizzie and Darcy’s.

Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy

Thomas Hardy might not be the first (or 77th) person you think of when you think of a Valentine’s Day read, but since Far From the Madding Crowd has a love square (at least) and three dashing Victorian men to chose from I’m thinking it’s a perfect fit.

FANTASY

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The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi 

This tale of star crossed lovers set in a kingdom inspired by India is a retelling of the Hades and Persephone myth, and follows a girl who’s horoscope promises a marriage of death and destruction.

 Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury 

This is a beautiful fantasy retelling of Alladdin, told from the perspective of a female jinni who falls in love with the thief who’s stolen her bottle and has to choose between that love and her own freedom.

 The Queen of Ieflaria by Effie Calvin

This is a very cute and fluffy fantasy romance novella about an arranged marriage between two princesses who are very different, but help each other grow. Plus there’s kittens and dragons.

POETRY

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 I wrote this for you by Iain S. Thomas

“And then my soul saw you and it kind of went “Oh there you are. I’ve been looking for you.”

Heaven or This by Topaz Winters

“we are holding hands in the barrel of a gun. they pull the trigger, but when she is kissing me only cherry blossoms come out.” 

Crush by Richard Siken

“Tell me how all this, and love too, will ruin us. These, our bodies, possessed by light. Tell me we’ll never get used to it.” 

 

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Have you read any of these books? What books would you recommend for Valentine’s Day? How do you feel about romance in books?
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38 thoughts on “Valentine’s Books for Every Kind of Reader

  1. I’ve been meaning to read Emergency Contact forever. Maybe I will now :’D Great post, really interesting idea and format, liked that you discussed so many different genres! I’ve also really been meaning to read Far From the Maddening Crowd!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As always I love the range in your recommendations! Yes to Sally Rooney and Eimear McBride! And I totally agree that Far from the Madding Crowd is the perfect (if unexpected) Valentine’s classic.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love this post so much! Wow, so many great recommendations — and I love that you broke this list down by genre. I have Strange Weather in Tokyo on loan from the library, but seeing you recommend it makes me want to make it more of a priority. Thank you for your recommendations!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I so need to read Emergency Contact! And I LOVE all of your LGBT book suggestions, and was especially happy to see Tash since I really liked it but haven’t seen many bloggers talking about it since it came out. This is a really great list!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Such a great list!! I love that you included different genres and age ranges 💕🌺 Queens of Geek is fantastic and also so heartwarming, so the perfect Valentine’s Day read!! I also really think watching the To All the Boys movie and reading the book is a great plan for the Day too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I really love Jane Austen’s novels and both Pride & Prejudice as well as Emma are my favorites!

    I’ve heard quite a lot of talk about Conversations with Friends and Too all the boys I loved before so they are on my radar for when I can add more books to my TBR (being strict with my limit here)!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Great post! AND OH MY LORD I LOVE CRUSH. It’s one of my favorite poetry books ever. I Wrote This For You is really great as well 🙂 I like classics a lot, and I’m always looking for more to read. I’ll have to investigate North & South and Far From the Madding Crowd! A few of my top Valentine’s Day reads would be The Reluctant Godfather by Allison Tebo, Once and For All and Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen, and My Lady Jane by Brodi Ashton, Jodi Meadows, and Cynthia Hand.

    Eleanor | On the Other Side of Reality

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, I’m so glad you think so! Crush is probably my favorite poetry book of all time, I love it so much. I’ll have to check your blog for some poetry recs, cause we seem to have really similar taste and I haven’t been reading enough poetry lately. I’ve yet to read a Sarah Dessen book, but I’ve been meaning to for so long! I’ll add Along for the Ride to my TBR 😊

      Like

  8. I’ve not read any on this list I don’t think but I have watched the BBC adaptation of North and South on Netflix with Richard Armitage and it was absolutely wonderful. I only put it on as background noise and then got engrossed and binge watched the entire series at once!

    Like

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