Awesome Shit I Love
While some of the following books may not be classified as "romance," they all have elements of it within their pages... Otherwise I probably wouldn't read them.
Contemporary/Real World Books
by Pippa Grant
There are three things I hate:
Bratwurst in any form, my neighbors boinking like farm animals at 3 AM, and Chase Jett.
Mostly I hate Chase Jett. It's been ten years since he took my virginity—I'd make a bratwurst joke, but the unfortunate truth is that it would have to be a brat-best joke, and
yes, it kills me to admit that—and now he's not only a billionaire, he's also my new boss.
Turns out our hate is mutual. And this kind of hate is horrifically twisted, filthy, and banging hot.
I just might have to hate him forever.
Start with this one and just keep going. Pretty much anything by Pippa Grant is pure gold but the characters in this series are all amazing. The series revolves around a hockey team and their friends, all of whom are hilarious.
by R.L. Mathewson
Done with being the world's biggest pushover, Haley decides that things are going to start changing. The first thing that she was going to do was to put a stop to all the crap that her aggravating neighbor put her through. What she hadn't expected was to be sucked into his world, but Haley has a game plan and she won't let herself forget what the bad boy next door is capable of.
The last thing that Jason expected was for his shy little neighbor to go Rambo on him over some ruined flowers, but he quickly got over it once he realized exactly what he'd been missing. After he decides to take her under his wing, he can't help but notice how nicely she fits in his life. Now the only thing left to do was to convince her that this is anything but a game.
I love the Neighbor From Hell series sooooo much. This family killed me. I laughed myself straight to death. This is the first book in the series, but they're all amazing.
by Damon Suede
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire...
Since 9/11, Brooklyn firefighter Griff Muir has wrestled with impossible feelings for his best friend and partner at Ladder 181, Dante Anastagio. Unfortunately, Dante is strictly a ladies’ man, and the FDNY isn’t exactly gay-friendly. For ten years, Griff has hidden his heart in a half-life of public heroics and private anguish.
Griff’s caution and Dante’s cockiness make them an unbeatable team. To protect his buddy, there’s nothing Griff wouldn’t do… until a nearly bankrupt Dante proposes the worst possible solution: HotHead.com, a gay porn website where uniformed hunks get down and dirty. And Dante wants them to appear there—together. Griff may have to guard his heart and live out his darkest fantasies on camera. Can he rescue the man he loves without wrecking their careers, their families, or their friendship?
This book is hot, simple as that. I loved the characters, the plot, and definitely the sex! I couldn't get enough of the awkwardness of falling in love with your best friend - and that's coming from someone who generally doesn't care for that trope.
by Cora Seton
Navy SEAL Brian Lake is out of luck. Going rogue on his last mission landed him on a fast track out of the Navy—years too soon to have saved up enough money to buy the ranch he’s always wanted. Without a career—or the cash to start over—Brian’s options are few, until Army general Augustus Reed steps in with an intriguing new mission—a permanent one.
Ignored by her absentee father, duped by thief he appointed to oversee her family’s ranch, Cass Reed is done with men for good. From now on she’s determined to run Two Willows herself, so when her father sends a Navy SEAL to fix up her house, she vows to run him off her land as soon as possible. But Brian’s just as determined to stay, and he’s in a far different league than the men she’s met before.
Brian’s ready to do anything that will earn him a share of a prosperous ranch—even take a chance on marrying the General’s daughter. And he soon realizes it won’t be a hardship to marry Cass. She’s everything he’s ever dreamed of in a woman—and Two Willows is everything he wanted in a ranch.
But he’s not the only one who wants Two Willows—and Cass.
Will falling in love be the most dangerous mission of all?
The Brides of Chance Creek series hits all my buttons. Every. Single. One. There's action, romance, a small town, family drama, and a touch of the unknown. I seriously love this series.
Mason and Logan Kade are two brothers who did their own thing. They were rich and expected to attend Samantha's school, Fallen Crest Academy. They chose public school and now she has to live with them. The problem is that she doesn't care at all: about them, about her friends, about her cheating boyfriend, or even about her parent's divorce. But maybe that's a good thing. Maybe change is a good thing.
The Fallen Crest series bridges the gap between young and new adult, following the characters from high school into college. Though darker and more intense than those previously mentioned in this list, I can't help but be head over heals for these characters.
All Other Books
The Emperor's Edge
by Lindsay Buroker
Imperial law enforcer Amaranthe Lokdon is good at her job: she can deter thieves and pacify thugs, if not with a blade, then by toppling an eight-foot pile of coffee canisters onto their heads. But when ravaged bodies show up on the waterfront, an arson covers up human sacrifices, and a powerful business coalition plots to kill the emperor, she feels a tad overwhelmed.
Worse, Sicarius, the empire's most notorious assassin, is in town. He's tied in with the chaos somehow, but Amaranthe would be a fool to cross his path. Unfortunately, her superiors order her to hunt him down. Either they have an unprecedented belief in her skills... or someone wants her dead.
The romance in this series is slow burn but oh so satisfying. This was my first trip into a steampunkish world and I was not disappointed. I've reread this series a couple times and every time is just as good as the last.
Under the Never Sky
by Veronica Rossi
Exiled from her home, the enclosed city of Reverie, Aria knows her chances of surviving in the outer wasteland—known as The Death Shop—are slim. Then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. He's wild—a savage—and her only hope of staying alive. A hunter for his tribe in a merciless landscape, Perry views Aria as sheltered and fragile—everything he would expect from a Dweller. But he needs Aria's help too; she alone holds the key to his redemption.
This dystopian series has stuck with me over the years. I'll be minding my own business and suddenly remember it. I love the characters and the way their relationship develops. This was the series that swayed me to investigate the romance genre further.
by Jaymin Eve and Jane Washington
Willa Knight: Dweller. Slave. Non-magical being.
In Minatsol, being a dweller means that you are literally no better than dirt. In fact, dirt might actually be more useful than Willa. Her life will be one of servitude to the sols, the magic-blessed beings who could one day be chosen to become gods.
At least her outer village is far removed from the cities of the sols, and she won’t ever be forced to present herself to them... Until one small mistake changes everything, and Willa is awarded a position to serve at Blesswood, the top sol academy in the world—a position that she definitely did not earn.
Under the sudden, watchful eye of the gods, she will be tasked to serve the Abcurse brothers, five sols built of arrogance, perfection and power. They are almost gods themselves, and under their service she is either going to end up sentenced to death, or else they are going to ruin her so badly that she will wish for it.
Either way, she is in trouble.
Oh man. The Curse of the Gods series rocks my ever loving world. It is a reverse harem that managed to grab my feels and make me burst out laughing like a lunatic. I've read these way more than is healthy.
by Kristy Cunning
I'm not so different from most people.
Like everyone else, I have life goals.
Goal #1: Become a real girl instead of this invisible ghost thing I currently am.
Goal #2: Convince the four men I've been haunting for the past five years to pick me to be their new toy after goal one is complete.
Goal #3: Figure out who/what I am and why I can't remember anything past the five years I've been haunting this quad.
Goal #4: Eat popcorn.
See? Perfectly normal. Sort of.
Gotta start small, after all.
It's not like anyone else is perfect either.
This series is for all who love dark humor. And raunchiness. The Dark Side series was so much fun to read and I couldn't wait for the next one to come out. It's a reverse harem with a competitive twist that I absolutely adored.
The Beast of Beswick
by Amalie Howard
Lord Nathaniel Harte, the disagreeable Duke of Beswick, spends his days smashing porcelain, antagonizing his servants, and snarling at anyone who gets too close. With a ruined face like his, it's hard to like much about the world. Especially smart-mouthed harpies—with lips better suited to kissing than speaking—who brave his castle with indecent proposals.
But Lady Astrid Everleigh will stop at nothing to see her younger sister safe from a notorious scoundrel, even if it means offering herself up on a silver platter to the forbidding Beast of Beswick himself. And by offer, she means what no highborn lady of sound and sensible mind would ever dream of—a tender of marriage with her as his bride.
This might be my favorite remix of Beauty and the Beast. It was funny and achingly sweet. My heart broke for Thane and I loved Astrid and her smart mouth. I am excited about the next book in the series, but as of this writing, I haven't read it yet.
Accidentally Compromising the Duke
by Stacy Reid
England, 1817. Miss Adeline Hays is out of options. Determined to escape marriage to a repugnant earl, Adeline plans to deliberately allow herself to be caught in a compromising position at a house party with the much kinder man she’d hoped to marry. Instead, Adeline accidentally enters the wrong chamber and tumbles into the bed of the mad duke.
Edmond Rochester, the duke of Wolverton, is seeking a wife to care for his two daughters. A young lady of sensibilities, accomplishment, and most importantly, one who he is not attracted to—a complete opposite of the bewitching beauty who traps him into marriage. But despite the lust he feels for his new duchess, Edmond is resolved to never allow them intimacy, refusing to ever again suffer the tormenting loss of a loved one.
This is the series that really converted me to historical romance. This is book one in the Wedded by Scandal series and, as of now, there are only three books but I loved them all. The characters are amazing and I love the drama and, obviously, the scandal of it all.
by Emma V. Leech
Dreams of true love and happy ever afters
Dreams of love are all well and good, but all Prunella Chuffington-Smythe wants is to publish her novel. Marriage at the price of her independence is something she will not consider. Having tasted success writing under a false name in The Lady’s Weekly Review, her alter ego is attaining notoriety and fame and Prue rather likes it.
A Duty that must be endured
Robert Adolphus, The Duke of Bedwin, is in no hurry to marry, he’s done it once and repeating that disaster is the last thing he desires. Yet, an heir is a necessary evil for a duke and one he cannot shirk. A dark reputation precedes him though, his first wife may have died young, but the scandals the beautiful, vivacious and spiteful creature supplied the ton have not. A wife must be found. A wife who is neither beautiful or vivacious but sweet and dull, and certain to stay out of trouble.
Dared to do something drastic
The sudden interest of a certain dastardly duke is as bewildering as it is unwelcome. She’ll not throw her ambitions aside to marry a scoundrel just as her plans for self-sufficiency and freedom are coming to fruition. Surely showing the man she’s not actually the meek little wallflower he is looking for should be enough to put paid to his intentions? When Prue is dared by her friends to do something drastic, it seems the perfect opportunity to kill two birds.
However, Prue cannot help being intrigued by the rogue who has inspired so many of her romances. Ordinarily, he plays the part of handsome rake, set on destroying her plucky heroine. But is he really the villain of the piece this time, or could he be the hero?
Finding out will be dangerous, but it just might inspire her greatest story yet.
This series rocks my effing socks off. These books completely destroyed my productivity for an entire week as I was dedicated (and obsessed) with completing them. I kept thinking that the next book in the series wasn't going to be good and I couldn't have been more wrong. Some of the books I was certain I wouldn't like ended up being my favorites. This is book 1 in the Girls Who Dare series and I cannot recommend it enough.
This is a book subscription service that rocks my world. The main box is for young adults but they also have one for younger kids that I haven't tried. Not all of these are romance books, but they've all been good so far. Each month you get an autographed book and a bunch of book lover goodies.
I feel like I've spent my whole life trying to find the right planner. I even. spent a whole month trying to construct my own... Then I found Agendio. I wear a lot of hats and nothing ever fit them all until now. These things are fully customizable and life changing. They're a little pricey and mine took about a month to make, but it was so worth it. That link will take you to the template I used, but there are roughly a zillion others to choose from.
So I don't want to snub the Agendio planner, because I do love that set up. In fact, I still have one to remember larger dates and long term things. However, I've discovered the magic of quarterly goals. The Clever Fox Ultimate Achievers quarterly goal planner is gold. It really helps me balance my life and focus in on the things that I want to get done. In the future, I will get a more simplistic Agendio planner and use Clever Fox for my day to day.