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Top 10 Romantic Reads of 2022

Updated: Dec 27, 2022

Once upon a time, there was a thirty-something year old woman who claimed she hated romance ... until one day she decided to give it a try (after her best friend pestered her for years to do so). The day she picked up her first romance, her heart grew three sizes, and she quickly became obsessed. The end? Never!

Below are my top ten picks of my most romantic reads of the year.

10 - (Romantic) to 1 (Head over heels in love)

10. Dirty/Players Series' (I can't choose one) by Jaine Diamond

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Trope: Rockstar

Chemistry: Oh yes. Yes, yes, yes.

Banter: Awesome.

Sexy: Oh hell yes.

Why it made it to the list: The chemistry between all of the characters. The banter. The steam. The journey to their HEA. So romantic, but not hallmark-y romance. It feels very realistic.

9. The Bonds That Tie Series (I can't choose one)

by J. Bree

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Trope: Reverse Harem

Chemistry: You know it.

Banter: Yes, and its different with each bond

Sexy: Uh ... YES!

Why it made it to the list: I never thought I would have a reverse harem on my top 10 list for romance, but it is. J. Bree has written a reverse harem series that, while steamy, is equally romantic. Oli's relationship with each of her bond's is unique from one another, and is rooted in what feels like authentic love. Not the easiest thing to pull off, so props to J. Bree!

8. The Love Hypothesis

by Ali Hazelwood

Genre: Contemporary Romantic Comedy

Trope: Fake Relationship

Chemistry: YES! And the tension ...

Banter: Adorkable

Sexy: Surprisingly so.

Why it made it to the list: Olive and Adam had to make this top 10 list. Adam's secret crush on Olive is obvious from the start, and him agreeing to help Olive by pretending to date her, and their budding friendship and relationship, is just adorable. It makes them one of my favorite couples.

7. Radiance

by Grace Draven

Genre: Fantasy Romance

Trope: Arranged Marriage

Chemistry: Beautifully

Banter: Wonderful

Sexy: Subtle, but yes.

Why it made it to the list: This is one of the only series that I've read that two people fall in love with the person, and is not initially attracted to them. An arranged marriage between a human and a Kai, both of them finding the other disgusting to look at, but upon meeting, immediately strike up a friendship. As they become closer, they fall in love, and only become attracted to one another after falling in love. Their friendship and resulting bond with one another is romantic as hell.

6. House of Sky and Breath

by Sarah J Maas

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Trope: Fated Mates

Chemistry: OF COURSE!

Banter: Bryce and Hunt together on page will forever be a delight

Sexy: YES

Why it made it to the list: We have so much romance in this book, it's sickening. Not really. haha. Bryce and Hunt are relationship goals. Ruhn and "Day" is romantic ... till you know what. Those are the two big ones, and both relationships are romantic in different ways. I can't wait for the next book, because there are hinted relationships that I NEEDDDDDDD!

5. Surviving Time/ Belgrave Dynasty (I can't choose one)

by Calia Reed

Genre: Historical Contemporary Romance

Trope: Opposites Attract (Surviving Time), Frenemies (King of the South), Brothers Best Friend (Lady Gouldian)

Chemistry: Oh. My. God. YES

Banter: Amazing!


Why it made it to the list: Read these books and try to argue with me why Etienne and Serene are NOT relationship goals? You can't. Etienne and Serene's journey to one another across time is epically romantic, sexy and just all around wonderful. King of the South's frenemies trope adds a level of humor to Livingston and Rainey's relationship, but no less romantic. And Lady Gouldian's featured couple, Asa and Nathalie, is heartbreaking, intense, sexy ... the love between those characters BLEEDS through the pages ...

despite that cliffhanger.

4. Glow

by Raven Kennedy

Genre: Fantasy Romance

Trope: Fated Mates

Chemistry: Yes, yes, yes!

Banter: Good

Sexy: Um, yes. The carriage scene. I still haven't recovered.

Why it made it to the list: Slade and Auren are just the definition of modern romance. They take care of each other. They support each other. When one is down, the other lifts them up. They love each other deeply, and it doesn't need to be told. You feel that.

3. The Inadequate Heir

by Danielle L. Jensen

Genre: Fantasy Romance

Trope: Enemies to lovers, Secret Identity

Chemistry: Major chemistry.

Banter: Great!

Sexy: Uh ... yeah.

Why it made it to the list: I am a sucker for a true enemies to lovers, and let's be honest - this is it. Two heirs, on opposite sides of the war, fall in love through chance and secret meetings. When things fall apart, they don't give up on each other. Especially Keris. He will do anything for Zarrah, even at the expense of his moral compass. I can't wait for the next book.

2. The War of Two Queens

by Jennifer L Armentrout

Genre: Fantasy Romance

Trope: Fated Mates

Chemistry: Deliciously so.

Banter: Always.

Sexy: Yes. Yes. Yes.

Why it made it to the list: Cas and Poppy's relationship, despite being in a somewhat historical fantasy, is exactly what you would want in a modern romance. They support and take care of one another. Cas doesn't feel emasculated over the fact that Poppy is more powerful than him. In fact, he finds it sexy. The amount of respect and love they have for one another is the definition of romance in my books. Spoiler (highlight between arrows) -------> and the love Kieren and Poppy feel for one another is romantic as well. Despite not being heartmates, those feelings of love and respect are genuine, and while they are not in a

relationship, it all felt very romantic. <------------

1. Lore Olympus

by Rachel Smythe

Genre: Graphic Novel, Romance

Trope: Mythology Retelling

Chemistry: SO MUCH!

Banter: SO GOOD!

Sexy: Yes, but not in the way you think

Why it made it to the list: I adore Lore Olympus. I love Rachel's version of Hades and Persephone. Persephone is so bubbly, and sweet. Hades is a bit of a dork, and a secret romantic, causing him to feel lonely. The way Rachel uses a small amount of words, and her art, so you can genuinely feel the love and attraction that building, shows wonderful talent, and I look forward to reading every new chapter she releases on Webtoons weekly - and rereading them in her beautiful graphic novels. This version

of Hades and Persephone is yet another example of

what I feel is true romance: they both support, and

respect each other, while having fun and finding joy

in even the hard moments.

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