Summer reading and romance reading seem to go hand-in-hand like figurines on the top of wedding cakes.
While romances are a year-round joy, there’s something so satisfying about spending a warm day outside with a pair of people who need to jump obstacles and open their eyes and heal their hearts before they can find love.
Here’s a short list of highly anticipated romances hitting readers’ hands this summer. And don’t forget to check out Amazon’s Summer Reading page to find additional romances, memoirs, mysteries and thrillers, book club picks, and more.
Beach Read by Emily Henry
We’ve awarded this book the yearbook-like superlative of being the “most meta beach read,” and it’s also a whole lot of fun. Romance writer January Andrews has delivered top-selling books like clockwork, but her father’s death has knocked her for a loop. She’s not the only one with writer’s block. Her new neighbor, a literary writer beloved by critics, suffers the same ailment. Competitive and slightly disdainful of the other’s style, they make a bet and agree to swap writing projects: he’ll write the beach read, and she’ll write the literary masterpiece, and may the best writer win. But as romance begins to bloom, they might both be winners. (May 19)
The Jackal by J.R Ward
J.R. Ward launches a new spinoff series, Prison Camp, that lives in the same world as the Black Dagger Brotherhood. A notorious prison camp, hidden but still active, is located in a subterranean labyrinth. As Nyx tries to find her sister in the prison, she joins forces with the Jackal. But even their passion cannot keep them safe as the prison warden seeks their deaths. Ward can be relied on to deliver sizzling scenes hotter than any summer day. (August 18)
Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover
There’s not a whole lot of information available about this book, which is kinda awesome in this day and age. It’s a romance—that is for sure. And there is a quote on Hoover’s Instagram that seems to be from the book: “I think when you’re the worst of people, finding the worst in others becomes a survival tactic of sorts. You focus heavily on the darkness in people in hopes it doesn’t expose the true shade of your own shadow. That’s how my mother has spent her entire life. Always seeking the worst in people. Even her own daughter.” Make of that what your will… but I will certainly be picking up Heart Bones as soon as it’s available. (July 28)
Last Tang Standing by Lauren Ho
Readers (or viewers) of Crazy Rich Asians will instantly understand Andrea Tang’s predicament: she’s over 30, her family wants her to marry, but, just as important, they want her to marry someone they approve of. Andrea has a busy job as a lawyer, enjoys the nightlife of Singapore, and is in no hurry to tie the knot, but fake stories of boyfriends won’t hold her family off for much longer. And then she meets handsome, rich Eric Deng, who ticks off all the right boxes. Family loyalties and Andrea’s personality collide, often hilariously, in this flirty, fun romance. (June 9)
Party of Two by Jasmine Guillory
When Olivia starts chatting with the baseball-hatted guy next to her at a Los Angeles hotel bar, she has no idea that he’s the junior senator from California. (His enthusiastic conversational gambit about tax laws should’ve been a clue, though.) Although she has her hands full with starting a new law firm, and the last thing she wants to do is date a senator, he does have an endearing appreciation of ice cream sandwiches…. Guillory always finds the pieces that click between her characters, and Party of Two is a great addition to her Wedding Date world. Also check out the four summer reads that Guillory recommends (June 23).
Conventionally Yours by Annabeth Albert
Conrad and Alden manage to barely tolerate each other during their weekly group game nights, when they play. So when they’re given the chance to take a road trip to compete in an Odyssey gaming tournament, both are sure it’s a bad idea. But road trips have a way of breaking down barriers, and Conrad and Alden slowly, sweetly discover who the other really is beneath the façade. A delightful nerdy romance. (June 2)
Dance Away with Me by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Phillips crafts a perfect heartfelt, small-town read in which a young widow tries to build a fresh new life in the Tennessee mountains. But the town isn’t so certain they want her, especially as she’s committed to real sex education for the local teenagers. While Phillips is perhaps best known for her sassy romances, Dance Away with Me is a more thoughtful story, delving into broken dreams and broken hearts, and how to heal them. (June 9)
The Wrong Mr. Darcy by Evelyn Lozada and Holly Lörincz
This modern riff on Pride and Prejudice puts Hara Isari, an up-and-coming sports writer, in the company of an arrogant rookie basketball sensation, and their interactions leave Hara infuriated. But could there be something more to Derek Darcy? I enjoyed Lozada’s fierce and funny The Perfect Date, and I’m looking forward to what she does with a favorite romantic hero. (August 25)
From romantic comedies to heartfelt romances, these eight love stories are perfect partners for summer reading on the porch, in the park, or in your favorite lawn chair.