The best romance novels that stay with you long after the book has closed

Who am I?

Like many, I am a sucker for a Happy Ever After. I want to drift upon the clouds of peaceful surrender. But let's face it, we hurdle back to reality and face plant. And because of that, I write romance with the heartache of truth. I gravitate toward contemporary romance because of the tough topics characters face as they find love. I’ve written seven romance novels and one YA. I run three writing groups and work for Munchkin Lane developing/designing Early Childhood Readers. I have a master’s degree in creative writing with an emphasis in Young Adult and a bachelor's in creative writing. 

I wrote...

Midnight's Dream

By R.E.S. Tidmore,

Book cover of Midnight's Dream

What is my book about?

Emma Verbeck has always lived in the shadows of her older brothers. After a tragic accident befalls the Verbeck family, her loving brothers are too overprotective, and Emma has been struggling ever since to find her own voice. Her sensitive and empathetic nature as the town doctor offers her an identity all to herself.

In the first book of the Verbecks of Idaho series, the past has the power to turn lives upside down and family loyalties are tested. This is a story about love against all odds and learning how to forgive.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of The MacKade Brothers: Devin and Shane

Why did I love this book?

The Mackade Brothers is a series that has stayed with me over the years because of the playful family bond that links four young men together. Each one of their stories leaves me warm and tingly inside. So, with a blissful sigh and a hug, I have placed them all on my bookshelf of accomplishments. Reading is a struggle for me, so every book that calls me back to its pages for another read is excellent. And this series has done that three or four times now. I love that Nora can approach a complex topic with a light touch. Keeping the darkness from being too heavy.

By Nora Roberts,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The MacKade Brothers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Two love stories are brought together in one volume.

Silver Thaw

By Catherine Anderson,

Book cover of Silver Thaw

Why did I love this book?

This story stayed with me for some time after I read it. The main character's situation was so palpable my heart ached for her. Any book that touches my heart is a must-read for all my friends. The setting is winter; to really understand it, read it then. It will add to its power. The courage both characters show when facing the odds is heartwarming.

By Catherine Anderson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Silver Thaw as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Coulter and Harrigan Family novels comes a brand-new contemporary romance series about first love, second chances, and hope reborn.…
After years of living in fear of her husband, Amanda Banning has left him and moved to Mystic Creek, Oregon, for a fresh start. But she’s having a tough time providing for herself and her six-year-old daughter. Writing her secret yearnings on slips of paper and sending them into the wind helps her cling to the hope that things will get better…and that she can find happiness again.
Jeb Sterling has no…

Unbreak Me

By Michelle Hazen,

Book cover of Unbreak Me

Why did I love this book?

With the unusual title, this book was recommended to me by a bubbly store book clerk. Afraid to tell her no, thank you. I paid for the book and fled the store. I was hooked from the first line of the book to the last. As LJ takes the stage full of suspicion, Andra is on edge yet stoic. They seem an unlikely pairing. The unfolding of the story is like a long-awaited date night. Hopeful, warm, with the promise of more. This story is a reminder that odds can be overcome if you are strong enough to stand alone when others want you to sit down. 

By Michelle Hazen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Unbreak Me as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


What could two troubled souls from different walks of life have in common? Maybe everything.

Andra Lawler lives isolated at her family’s horse ranch, imprisoned by the memories of an assault in college. When she needs help training her foals, she hires a Haitian-Creole cowboy from New Orleans with a laugh as big as the Montana sky.

LJ Delisle can’t stand the idea that Andra might be lonely—or eating frozen TV dinners. He bakes his way into her kitchen with a lemon velvet cake, and offers her…

Book cover of The Bitter and Sweet of Cherry Season: A Novel

Why did I love this book?

I love that this story is set around cherry harvest. The description and storytelling were done in broad strokes of imagery. This story stayed with me because of the grief and longing one of the main character struggles with. Seeing through the perspective of the little girl was entertaining. All the characters had extraordinary personalities. I loved this book because it was a universal truth. Life is a hill with boulders of various sizes, set on fire, headed straight for you. Staying put is only going to get you knocked the F@#! Out.

By Molly Fader,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Bitter and Sweet of Cherry Season as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“A stunning story about family and hope that unfolds unexpectedly but beautifully, like a Michigan summer sunset over an orchard.” —Viola Shipman, bestselling author of The Clover Girls and The Secret of Snow

In cherry season, anything is possible…

Everything Hope knows about the Orchard House is from the stories of her late mother. So when she arrives at the northern Michigan family estate late one night with a terrible secret and her ten-year-old daughter in tow, she’s not sure if she’ll be welcomed or turned away with a shotgun by the aunt she has never met.

Hope’s aunt, Peg,…

The Rosie Project

By Graeme Simsion,

Book cover of The Rosie Project

Why did I love this book?

This novel has stayed with me because it is a unique story from the perspective of a character with Asperger's. I fell in love with the main character's personality and how he takes on every situation he finds himself in. Seeing and understanding that he is in love was no different. I couldn’t help but root for this character as he unravels what love is. There are three books in this series. They are all amazing if you are looking for something new and different.

By Graeme Simsion,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked The Rosie Project as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The international bestselling romantic comedy “bursting with warmth, emotional depth, and…humor,” (Entertainment Weekly) featuring the oddly charming, socially challenged genetics professor, Don, as he seeks true love.

The art of love is never a science: Meet Don Tillman, a brilliant yet socially inept professor of genetics, who’s decided it’s time he found a wife. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which Don approaches all things, he designs the Wife Project to find his perfect partner: a sixteen-page, scientifically valid survey to filter out the drinkers, the smokers, the late arrivers.

Rosie Jarman possesses all these qualities. Don easily disqualifies her…

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