Few literary experiences compare to a good love story. There are the star-crossed lovers, pushed together and then torn apart by a series of fatal coincidences; the unlikely romance that blossoms slowly from a friendship or even a mutual disdain; the hurried affair that happens on a timeline of illness or travel; and more other varieties than can be counted. Fortunately for you, we’ve compiled a list of reads we love that will be sure to tug at your heartstrings. It’ll be love at the first line—or so we can hope.
A Light in the Dark
Author: Elisabeth Rose
Mia is haunted by a recurring dream, which she believes to contain clues to the truth about the grisly deaths of her father and stepmother. Despite the hasty ruling of the police and the unwelcoming atmosphere upon her return to her hometown, she resolves to get to the bottom of the crime and get some closure for herself. Meanwhile, Arlo, a local investigative journalist, senses that all is not as it seems with this case—or with the daughter, the victims left behind. As matters become increasingly complicated and dangerous, the two searchers are drawn together in more ways than they could have anticipated. But even with their lives imperilled, they are determined to hold onto what glimmer of hope they can find.
Close to the Truth
Author: Shona Husk
Jasmine Heydon is a TV biologist who has earned every bit of success she’s found. She had to, after being chased out of her small town a decade ago by the chief of police. Now she’s back and bent on investigating the infamous River Man, a creature connected to haphazard killings over the past hundred years. She gets help from Gil Easton, the son of the chief of police, who isn’t about to let her slip away like the last time. But in spite of Gil’s best efforts to aid her in her search for the truth, and in spite of their rekindling relationship, some people in town aren’t so keen on second chances. And the River Man is posing a more potent threat by the day.
Save the Date
Author: R. J. Groves
Andie Gray, bridal seamstress extraordinaire, has had her heart set on a wedding at Darlington Vineyard for as long as she can remember. Too bad the crucial another half of that wedding is taking so long to come around. When the perfect man is suddenly dropped into her lap, she thinks it’s too good to be true—and she turns out to be right. What will it take for true love to come along? Meanwhile, Taylor Ballin is forced to rethink his forswearing of love when a certain seamstress breeze in to help with his sister’s wedding. Each sees in the other a whole host of reasons not to get involved…so why is it they can’t stay out of each other’s way?
Tapestry of War
Author: Jane MacKenzie
Set between Egypt and Scotland during the Second World War, this tale traces the interwoven lives of two women whose situations couldn’t be more different. Fran leads a life of luxury in Alexandria which is threatened by invasive forces to the west, while Cationa dreams of making a difference as a nurse in the theatre of war, far from her sleepy rural environment. As the bloody action intensifies across continents, the two will find love, friendship, and the struggle for survival in unexpected places. A story of the resilience of humanity, the power of relationships to cross immeasurable distances, and the unstoppable strength of womanhood.
Angels at War
Author: Freda Lightfoot
Livia and her sisters seem to have rid themselves of the ghost of their late father’s tyrannical rule, though not of the guilt over the loss of their sister Maggie. While her sisters settle into life at Todd Farm, Livia prepares to marry Jack Flint and start a family. Still, she cannot help entertaining the notion of reviving the old drapery business, even if it means risking her romance and future with Jack. He isn’t the only man obstructing her path in that regard: the more immediate problem is the moneyed Matthew Grayson, whose plans for the business both differ from and override Livia’s. The two clashes at every turn, and without warning, Livia’s upcoming marriage faces a bigger obstacle than she bargained for.
Author: A. K. Leigh
Carrie Farris, one of a set of triplets, is far and away from the pragmatist of her family. And with a successful forensic anthropology career to tend to in tandem with her siblings, romance is the last thing on her mind. She can float along just fine on her own. But her philosophy seems bound to take on water following the arrival of Rocco Donation, forensic technology magnate and recent recipient of a divorce. The pair has got charmed and drive in spades and are quickly becoming as interested in each other as in the mysterious murder case unfolding in front of them. Well, almost as interested. With their suspect always a few steps ahead, will the Farris triplets and their newfound companion finally get in over their heads?
The House at Flynn’s Crossing
Author: Elisabeth Rose
When Antonia arrives in the small town of Flynn’s Crossing, she rents out Mango House in the hopes of giving her twins and herself a new lease on life following an unspeakable—and highly publicized—tragedy. Flynn, the town councillor, has a tragedy he too is trying to escape, but he contends with it in the opposite manner: turning outward to help his community. Not that they’re exactly open to his help. He hasn’t heard the news surrounding Antonia, and she is grateful for someone who treats her normally. But a promising business development could end their equally promising new relationship before it begins…especially when that development goes south. Soon enough, Flynn has a choice to make, and Antonia has no choice but to trust.
Author: Patricia Weerakoon
Shiro grew up on a Sri Lankan tea plantation. She wants nothing more than to get away from it and pursue her dream of studying medicine and becoming a missionary doctor. Her best friend, Lakshmi, is a coolie labourer, with little chance of any sort of upward mobility. When their lives are upended by the arrival of the heirs to the fortunes of the tea industry—Anthony Ashley Cooper and his brother William—the girls are faced with challenges they could never have imagined. Possibilities, too. That is if these men can find it in themselves to see past the promise of profit and look at the people of Sri Lanka for what they are.
The Blue Mile
Author: Kim Kelly
The year is 1929. Times are hard for Yo O’Keenan, who finally takes his little sister Agnes and escapes their turbulent home for a new opportunity working on the Harbour Bridge. Over in Lavender Bay, Olivia Greene, a dedicated milliner, dreams of selling her wares and putting her designs on display all over the capitals of Europe. The pair meets by chance and forms an instant bond—but the forces of nature and history are working hard to break that bond down. In a matter of three years, their fair city is shadowed by civil war and the impending effects of the Great Depression. And suddenly Yo is nowhere to be found. A slice of historical fiction about the difference between surviving and living.
The Importance of Ernestine
Author: Elizabeth Dunk
A fresh twist on Wilde’s classic comedy of errors, The Importance of Ernestine follows best friends Cecily Carter and Gwen Fairford as they take on the big city, professional life, and exciting new romantic relationships. But their men might not be as perfect in the real world as they are on paper. Alec Moncrieff and John Worthing are used to getting what they want, and Cecily and Gwen seem like the package deal. But their charmed world begins to come apart at the seams when they fabricate one too many fancies. Emotions are about to come into play despite the pairs’ best attempts to disguise them. And someone’s past is about to catch up to them in a big way. Will politics ruin everything once again?
Author: Annabelle McInnes
Euan has spent who knows how long fighting for the safety of his family and friends. He has paid the price for it, too—physically and psychologically mangled and beaten by the time he returns home. But of all his burdens, the memory of having betrayed his companions Nick and Kira weighs on him heaviest. His former adversary now becomes his leader, and his own chances of reclaiming the strength of the man he once was are diminishing by the day. He feels more alone than ever before…and there is a rapidly steepening uphill battle ahead, against a force bent on subjugating what remains of the human race. Who among this ragtag community could emerge as their hope in their darkest hour?
The Red Dirt Road
Author: Alissa Callen
Dr Fliss Knight abandons the city and her medical practice for a ramshackle farm on the outskirts of Woodlea, disgraced and disheartened by the loss of a patient and hoping for an undisturbed life in the country. Hewitt Sinclair, having recently suffered a loss of his own—his twin brother—abandons pickup riding to care for his brother’s widow and children. But his selflessness soon comes at a personal cost, requiring him to take recovery time. Quickly enough, the two newfound loners are neighbours…and quickly after that, they aren’t such loners anymore. But something dark is about to emerge from Fliss’s family history, and when it does, she’ll find out if the new company she’s been keeping intends to stick around for the long haul.
Second Summer of War
Author: Cheryl Cooper
The sequel to Come Looking for Me details the 1813 voyage of Princess Emeline Louisa home to England, Hartwood Hall, and the antipathetic household of the Duke and Duchess of Belmont. Her guardians intend to marry her off, and she intends to resist by whatever means she can. Her friends Fly Austen and Dr Leander Braden are embarking on their own perilous homeward voyage in the hopes of reuniting with her, encountering every sort of trouble imaginable along the way as the British navy clashes with its new American counterpart. And meanwhile, all await with bated breath the trial of the traitorous Captain Thomas Trevelyan. When you’ve got nothing but time on your hands, anything can happen.
Too Lucky to Live
Author: Annie Hogsett
The next mystery in the Somebody’s Bound to Wind Up Dead series follows Allison HarperThe next mystery in the Somebody’s Bound to Wind Up Dead series follows Allie Harper, freshly divorced and on the hunt for a new man and a reliable car. She finds the man, Tom, in a crosswalk struggling with groceries; and once she realizes he’s blind it’s easy enough to assist and charm her way into his life. He’s also bought a lottery ticket—the winning one, it turns out, of course—and has to split the earnings with a kid he befriended and made a bet with. Things only get stranger as Tom and Allie discover the host of crooks and killers with their eyes all trained on the money. And no amount of running from one hotel to the next is going to protect them.
Author: Amanda Knight
Sergeant Nate Calloway has no memory of the wounds he’s wound up in the infirmary unit with, but Captain Beth Harper is a skilled surgeon with everything it takes to save him. She does what only she can do, and over the course of time learns about the traumatic and tortuous history that brought him to her. A tale of danger tested camaraderie and unfulfilled promises. Nate fully intends to return to the field as soon as he is able and right what has gone wrong. In the meantime, he and Beth are drawn together by more than just their intimate circumstances. Even so, they have no way of really knowing whose loyalties lie where—and determination isn’t all they’ll need if they want to make it out alive.
Circle of Stones
Author: Suzanne Alyssa Andrew
Nik treasures his girlfriend Jennifer like no one else. So when she goes missing, his life goes off the rails. He soon discovers that, if he is to have any hope of finding and rescuing her, he must brave a journey across the country and a series of seemingly random encounters with a host of strangers. There’s more to all of this than a chance meeting, though, and Nik ultimately realizes the strangers have stronger ties to one another than he could have predicted. No one is where, or who, he may have been led to believe. And of the two of them, Jennifer may not be the one in need of rescue. Can Nik unearth the truth before time runs out?
Man of the Moment
Author: Ken Clezy
It’s just as well that obstetrician Magnus Anderson has separated from his wife; he’s long had an eye for prim and proper midwife Sally. She’s got her own preoccupations, on her way to help alleviate a staff shortage at a mission hospital in Africa: and Magnus becomes entangled in her plans as she recruits him to be a short-term volunteer. At the hospital, he is confronted by colleagues of various opinions, faiths, and value systems, along with an array of first-time experiences. It’s all he can do to keep up—not least of all with Sally, who continues to absorb him without exactly being absorbed by him. Still, he thinks he’s handling it…until he is called home abruptly and sadly. Just where—and what—is he meant to be?
Honey Hill House
Author: Lisa Ireland
Dulili is an impoverished New South Wales town, to the point that it is paying people to relocate there. The young families and senior citizens who constitute what remains of the community are desperate to revitalize it and put it back on the map. Divorcee Bea Elliott is desperate to do the same but for perhaps slightly more selfish reasons: to run a bed-and-breakfast out of the dilapidated Honey Hill House as a means of proving her emotional and financial independence to her family and herself. Her new neighbour, Callum ‘Mitch’ Mitchell, is good-natured and certainly good-looking—also eager to help, but she is determined to do things her way. Even so, their paths end up crossing too often for him to stay out of her life.
UnderCover of Dark
Author: Juanita Kees
The sequel to Under the Hood picks up where its predecessor left off in the lives of the members of a teenage drug gang and the cop on their trail. Tiny Watts is dead, and the greasy lawyer to whom he was dubiously connected—Gino Bennetti—gets the bullet that was coming to him. When Mark Johnson investigates the matter, he is led instantly to Gino’s widow, Lily…but he doesn’t count on being drawn so deep into her world. As far is Lily is concerned, Mark has to stay an outsider, blind and deaf to the truth about the role her son Luke played in Tiny’s murder. A man like Mark can only mean trouble for her and the family she’s got left. And yet…
Echoes of the Heart
Author: Alyssa J. Montgomery
Jake Formosa has led a privileged life for a while now at the head of a formidable media corporation. But the career he enjoys and the money he makes do little to fill the void left by Amanda, the woman who broke his heart and abandoned him years ago. Now that she happens to be widowed, he intends to make her pay for having hurt him, and then he will never hurt again. But when he finally gets to her, he finds that her life has changed—and that life has changed her—in ways much darker and more irrevocable than he could have known. Still, Jake could never make the mistake of falling for her a second time. Could he?
A Heart Divided
Author: Mary Brock Jones
New Zealand’s Otago Goldfields, 1863. Nessa and her younger brother Philip are English transplants hoping to make their fortune in the mining business. Nessa knows the minefields are no place for a woman, but she is resolute in supporting her brother in even his most outrageous schemes. When they encounter a local run holder named John Reid, he helps them both out in a way that inspires Nessa to get to know him better. She is unaware that he has wanted her from the moment he laid eyes on her; and the prospect looks bleak, from his perspective at least, of her ever reciprocating his feelings. After all, she seems consumed with her brother’s needs and affairs. But the tables can turn in the blink of an eye…
Author: Rebekah Turner
In the third and final instalment of the Chronicles of Applecross, Lora Blackgoat is riding solo at the helm of a mercenary company—and losing ground fast. Even more, regrettably, her benefactor is away on holiday and thinks everything is fine back home. And Roman, the warrior she may or may not be in love with, is acting as a diplomatic delegate to negotiate a tentative peace treaty. As if all that weren’t enough, a brand-new adversary invades all their lives from without. Will Lora own her mistakes, face up to the destiny that has awaited her all this time, and help restore balance and order to her city? Or will all their efforts be for naught?
Author: Ainslie Paton
It’s not the boss-employee relationship anyone bargained for. Jacinta is next in line to run the company, while Mace is buried in the cubicle field of the IT department. They embarked upon what they both expected to be one ill-advised night together…except that it turned into a weekend of passion, intimacy, and personal connection on a number of levels. Suddenly, fortunes are shifting: Jacinta’s perfectly blueprinted life is unravelling before her eyes, and Mace’s barely sketched ambitions are finally getting him somewhere. Neither of them is accustomed to this iteration of life, much less prepared for it. Is there any room in this tangled web for something as crazy, irrational, and unplanned as love?
The Colonial Hotel
Author: Jonathan Bennett
An ancient story retold for a modern time. An ardent doctor named Paris, a devoted nurse named Helen, a country living in the shadow of civil unrest. They meet under the extreme duress of their work and their circumstances and share a passion they have never previously known. When the conflict around them eventually comes to a boil, they are pulled in by warring factions. Helen, who finds herself pregnant, manages to escape, but Paris is held prisoner by the rebels. Both are uncertain about their future as parents, as lovers, as skilled professionals whose expertise is needed to heal the world, and as individuals with lives to live. Who is to say whether they will ever be reunited?
And there’s no need to end here—make sure to browse ReadHowYouWant for an even greater selection of romantic tearjerkers. Whatever your taste, whether you’re a sucker for a sappy story or a newbie to this type of novel, these choices will surely have you lovestruck.