This list of romance novel to brighten your weekend includes viking romance, Scottish romance, regency romance and even good old New York Romance. Broaden your history knowledge. Cosy up in the cooler autumn weather. They’re as good excuses as any to read a romance novel.
Viking Romance Novels
1. Odin’s Shadow – Erin S Riley
Odin’s Shadow follows the story of headstrong Selia as she pines to join the Vikings in 19th century Ireland. When her father tries to marry her off to a nobleman, she knows that the sea is her only way out. After meeting and later marrying the handsome Viking Arlik, she learns that people are not always what they seem. Her husband is darker than she imagined. As secrets come out, Selia starts to question her own intentions: did she marry Arlik to get away from her controlling father or for love? This story is the first in the Odin’s Son series, and you can follow Selia’s romantic journey in two more books.
2. Beautiful Wreck – Larissa Brown
Ginn is a romantic at heart, but her Prince Charming may not be in this century. Set in futuristic Finland, Beautiful Wreck takes us on a time-traveling adventure to 920 A.D. Ginn is pulled back into time where she meets Heirik, a Viking leader who is feared and brutal. Will fate bring them together or will Ginn have to return to her time and forget about him? Larissa Brown gives us a well-researched novel that transports you to a different era. The romance scenes are not explicit; instead, Beautiful Wreck is about exploring love like you have never read before.
Scottish Romance Novel
3. Outlander – Diana Gabaldon
This classic romance story takes you time travelling through Scotland from 1945 to 1742. Outlander is a best seller and the story of Claire Randall is tantalising and troublesome. Finding herself transported back in time, Claire meets Jamie Fraser: a rugged warrior with a will to fight. Outlander is full of adventure, romance and time travelling love. Claire must choose between Jamie and her husband back in her time. Readers can expect graphic romance with lots of details. Even though it’s a long read, you won’t be disappointed with the descriptions of the Scottish Highlands and the attraction between Claire and Jamie. Outlander has even been adapted into a highly successful TV series.
New York Romance Novel
4. The Gilded Hour – Sara Donati
The Gilded Hour is not your typical boy meets girl romance but rather a story about how love can be transformative. Set in 1883 New York City, the story follows two young female doctors as they step into their medical practice. Cousins Sophie and Anne are thrust into a world of the poor and the sick. When Anne meets four children who have lost everything, she must decide if she can let this desire for motherhood consume her heart. Or if she can and must remain detached and professional. Written with beautiful descriptions, this is a story about women’s rights, medicine and the power of love.
English and Regency Romance
5. The Debutante is Mine – Vivienne Lorret
Lilah Appleton needs to find a wealthy husband or else she will be married to her cousin. Born into aristocracy, she should be looking for a Lord. The Debutante is Mine follows Lilah in her quest for a husband. Explores how she lands up with a man who is worlds apart. Jack hates the aristocracy and he should not like Lilah, but their past and their dark secrets push them together once again. The romance is tender and does not push any extreme boundaries as it explores the relationship between class and two lovable characters. Get ready to go to the ball with Lilah, Jack, and intrigue.
6. A Lady’s Guide to Kiss a Rake – Tanya Wilde
A Lady’s Guide to a Kiss a Rake takes a strong woman and drops her into a world of over-protective males. When Lady Josephine is dared to kiss the debaucherous Damien Grenville, she thinks it will be easy. Her brothers try to stop her and she secretly knows that Grenville will ruin her family’s reputation and drag her down. Damien can’t help but fall for the headstrong girl, and when she gets in too deep, he must get her back. Tanya Wilde is a new author and this story is full of comedy, tragedy and just enough steaminess to keep it clean.
7. Portrait of a Forbidden Lady – Kathleen Bittner Roth
When newly widowed Lady Georgiana Cressington finds herself back in her hometown, she can’t help but bump into her past. Set in 1859 England, Portrait of a Forbidden Lady follows Georgiana as she learns to navigate the dangerous high-stakes gambling her father is embroiled in. She has a son to protect, a name to uphold, but when Sir Robert Garreck enters her life again, she is not sure where her allegiances lie. This is not a “bodice ripping” love story but rather a tender one that shows us how some loves never die, no matter the secrets and betrayals that get in the way. Kathleen Bittner Roth is a new author, but this story should not be missed out on.