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: Book One of the Verbecks of Idaho

By R.E.S. Tidmore,

Book cover of Midnight's Dream: Book One of the Verbecks of Idaho

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.

The books I picked & why

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The MacKade Brothers: Devin and Shane

By Nora Roberts,

Book cover of The MacKade Brothers: Devin and Shane

Why 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.


Silver Thaw

By Catherine Anderson,

Book cover of Silver Thaw

Why 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.


Unbreak Me

By Michelle Hazen,

Book cover of Unbreak Me

Why 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. 


The Bitter and Sweet of Cherry Season: A Novel

By Molly Fader,

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

Why 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 [email protected]#! Out.


The Rosie Project

By Graeme Simsion,

Book cover of The Rosie Project

Why 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.


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in romantic love, brothers, and Michigan?

5,887 authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about romantic love, brothers, and Michigan.

Romantic Love Explore 417 books about romantic love
Brothers Explore 56 books about brothers
Michigan Explore 38 books about Michigan

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, Welcome to Temptation, and How I Wonder What You Are if you like this list.