91 books like Courtesy of Cupid

By Nashae Jones,

Here are 91 books that Courtesy of Cupid fans have personally recommended if you like Courtesy of Cupid. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Keep It Together, Keiko Carter

Laurie Morrison Author Of Keeping Pace

From my list on middle grade novels with romance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved books, movies, and shows that feature swoony, satisfying romances. As a middle school teacher and upper middle-grade author, I know it can be tricky to find novels with romance for the middle-grade set. But I also know firsthand that there are many kids who crave these kinds of stories–and that there are major benefits to giving kids a chance to read and hopefully talk about crushes and relationships in all their complexity. I’m always on the lookout for realistic stories with just the right amount of romance to delight middle-grade readers, and these five are some of my favorites.

Laurie's book list on middle grade novels with romance

Laurie Morrison Why did Laurie love this book?

This book is an absolute delight! Debbi Michiko Florence is a master of middle-grade romance, and I love the way she explores all the giddy, awkward, confusing excitement of a middle-school crush.

The romance in this book is especially juicy because sweet, people-pleasing Keiko develops feelings for the one boy she’s sure she shouldn’t have a crush on–her best friend’s older brother!

In addition to the sweet romance, there are plenty of relatable and thought-provoking friendship dynamics in this story, too. And as a bonus, there’s a companion novel, Just Be Cool, Jenna Sakai, that’s every bit as fun!

By Debbi Michiko Florence,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Keep It Together, Keiko Carter as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Fans of Judy Blume and Jenny Han are sure to fall head-over-heels
for this sweet story about first crushes, friendship
drama, and finding the courage to stand up for yourself.

Seventh grade is supposed to be a game changer. And Keiko thinks
she's got it covered, especially with Audrey and Jenna
by her side to shop for a new look, pick out a prime lunch spot,
and even hit up that cute new bubble tea place after school. Her
trio is ready to tackle life as they always have... together.


But when Audrey decides they need
boyfriends before Fall Ball,…


Book cover of In the Role of Brie Hutchens...

Laurie Morrison Author Of Keeping Pace

From my list on middle grade novels with romance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved books, movies, and shows that feature swoony, satisfying romances. As a middle school teacher and upper middle-grade author, I know it can be tricky to find novels with romance for the middle-grade set. But I also know firsthand that there are many kids who crave these kinds of stories–and that there are major benefits to giving kids a chance to read and hopefully talk about crushes and relationships in all their complexity. I’m always on the lookout for realistic stories with just the right amount of romance to delight middle-grade readers, and these five are some of my favorites.

Laurie's book list on middle grade novels with romance

Laurie Morrison Why did Laurie love this book?

I just love Brie Hutchens, the brave, vulnerable, and absolutely charming main character of this upper middle-grade gem. Nicole Melleby writes characters who feel achingly real, and I felt so much tenderness toward Brie–and so much investment in her story–that I simply could not put this book down.

This is a poignant and propulsive story about an eighth-grade girl weathering a confusing and adorable crush and figuring out her sexuality against the backdrop of a vividly crafted Catholic school setting. Plus, there are such compelling family dynamics! I don’t think this novel is as well known as some of Melleby’s others, but it definitely should be! 

By Nicole Melleby,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In the Role of Brie Hutchens... as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

"A nuanced exploration of how to reconcile faith and identity . . . This funny, tender, and heart-wrenching story will have readers calling for an encore." -Kirkus Reviews, starred review Introducing Brie Hutchens: soap opera superfan, aspiring actor, and so-so student. Brie has big plans for eight grade. But when her mom walks in on her accidentally looking at some possibly inappropriate photos of her favorite actress, Brie sees her dream of attending the performing arts high school falling apart. So she blurts out that she's been chosen to crown the Mary statue during her Catholic school's ceremony in May.…


Book cover of Maybe It's a Sign

Laurie Morrison Author Of Keeping Pace

From my list on middle grade novels with romance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved books, movies, and shows that feature swoony, satisfying romances. As a middle school teacher and upper middle-grade author, I know it can be tricky to find novels with romance for the middle-grade set. But I also know firsthand that there are many kids who crave these kinds of stories–and that there are major benefits to giving kids a chance to read and hopefully talk about crushes and relationships in all their complexity. I’m always on the lookout for realistic stories with just the right amount of romance to delight middle-grade readers, and these five are some of my favorites.

Laurie's book list on middle grade novels with romance

Laurie Morrison Why did Laurie love this book?

I love this book because it somehow manages to be a poignant grief story, a delightful friendship story, and a cute (and funny!) tale of first romance all in one book. And all in one book that’s under 250 pages, to boot!

The voice is engaging, the characters are fully realized, and the tone is as cozy and warm as the special desserts the main character learns to bake. It offers an emotional and fun take on an enemies-to-friends-to-crushes tale for the middle-grade crowd.

By E. L. Shen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Maybe It's a Sign as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

Seventh grader Freya June Sun has always believed in the Chinese superstitions spoon-fed to her since birth - but ever since her dad's death a year ago, she's become obsessed, believing that her father is sending her messages through signs from the beyond. Like how, on her way to an orchestra concert where she's dreading her viola solo, a pair of lucky red birds appear, a sure indication that Dad wants Freya to stick with the instrument and make him proud.

Then Freya is partnered with Gus Choi, a goofy and super annoying classmate, for a home economics project. To…


Book cover of Listen to This

Laurie Morrison Author Of Keeping Pace

From my list on middle grade novels with romance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always loved books, movies, and shows that feature swoony, satisfying romances. As a middle school teacher and upper middle-grade author, I know it can be tricky to find novels with romance for the middle-grade set. But I also know firsthand that there are many kids who crave these kinds of stories–and that there are major benefits to giving kids a chance to read and hopefully talk about crushes and relationships in all their complexity. I’m always on the lookout for realistic stories with just the right amount of romance to delight middle-grade readers, and these five are some of my favorites.

Laurie's book list on middle grade novels with romance

Laurie Morrison Why did Laurie love this book?

This is an immersive and insightful slice-of-life story that drew me right in. I read it on vacation, and it was a perfect tween beach read to get swept up in!

The chapters alternate between the perspectives of two main characters, Lily and Will, who feel equally real and equally endearing. I loved getting inside both their heads and seeing their lives intersect and their feelings for each other grow.

The writing is lovely and smooth, and there’s just a light sprinkling of romance to liven up a relatable and authentic friendship story.

By Jennifer Blecher,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Listen to This as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Secrets, rumors, shifting friendships, overbearing parents, and, on top of all that, a first dance—how does anyone survive seventh grade? Told from dual points of view, this novel about two tweens finding their voices and standing up for themselves is for fans of Lisa Yee, Leslie Connor, and Janae Marks.

Lily, Maddie, and Sasha have always been the perfect friendship trio. But this year, everything is changing. Maddie and Sasha made the elite soccer team, and Lily feels that they’re always leaving her behind. And everyone seems to have secrets now: Maddie, and Sasha, and Lily’s sister, and even Lily…


Book cover of Ballad & Dagger: An Outlaw Saints Novel

L.S. Moore Author Of Bridgekeeper

From my list on YA paranormal thrillers told from a guy’s point of view.

Why am I passionate about this?

Have you noticed the scarcity of YA novels told solely from a guy’s point of view? If you aren’t a boy, the parent of one, or maybe a savvy librarian, you probably haven’t. I’m two out of three. I have two awesome sons. They’re avid readers and burned through the YA section and into adult fantasy and sci-fi long before I was ready for them to. Boys read! There’s a need for protagonists who identify as male. No surprise, my YA novels often feature ordinary boys doing heroic things. Thanks to years of spying on my sons and their friends, I have plenty of fodder to feed my muse.

L.S.'s book list on YA paranormal thrillers told from a guy’s point of view

L.S. Moore Why did L.S. love this book?

I love an urban fantasy brimming with music, magic, deadly secrets, and unimaginable power.

High school junior Mateo’s life revolves around the piano. He’s a musical prodigy who completely underestimates his potential as a demon-fighting, curse-breaking hero.

His humor and yearning to find himself hooked me from the beginning. I loved his exotic diaspora community with its quirky, endearing-to-dangerous denizens. None of his neighbors bat an eye at him living with his two doting aunts, one alive, one dead.

It made me want to fly to New York, comb Brooklyn in search of Mateo’s neighborhood, and join the party!

By Daniel Jose Older,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ballad & Dagger as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Best-selling author Rick Riordan presents Daniel José Older's extraordinary YA urban fantasy about two teens who discover each other while fighting for their diaspora community.

Almost sixteen years ago, Mateo Matisse's island homeland disappeared into the sea. Weary and hopeless, the survivors of San Madrigal's sinking escaped to New York.

While the rest of his tight-knit Brooklyn diaspora community dreams of someday finding a way back home, Mateo--now a high school junior and piano prodigy living with his two aunts (one who's alive, the other not so much)--is focused on one thing: getting the attention of locally-grown musical legend Gerval.…


Book cover of Powerless

Marcelina LoBue Author Of Masks of Faded Dreams

From my list on fantasy romance books to stay up until 3 a.m. reading.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up, I've always been attracted to the fantasy genre; I've been obsessed ever since my teacher introduced me to it in the first grade. What started as innocent fairy books evolved to dark, spicy fantasy romance/romantasy. Now, in addition to staying up way past my bedtime reading, I'm a teenage author of my own YA fantasy romance book, Masks of Faded Dreams. This genre has truly changed my life. As cliche as that sounds, it's true; it's both my form of escapism and an eye-opening experience into worlds I'd never known existed. 

Marcelina's book list on fantasy romance books to stay up until 3 a.m. reading

Marcelina LoBue Why did Marcelina love this book?

One day, I was simply scrolling on TikTok…though my life was changed when I stumbled across one of Lauren’s TikToks. She shared her writing journey, and I was immediately hooked.

This book is everything I could’ve wished for in a fantasy romance and so much more. I’ll admit my expectations weren’t that high, but wow, was I blown away. The writing was easy to get into and flowed nicely, the characters were the type to stick with you long after you finished, and it included some of my favorite tropes: "Who did this to you?", royalty, forbidden love, and a fierce assassin who stops at nothing to avenge her family.

Overall, it was such an inspiring and addicting read. 

By Lauren Roberts,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Powerless as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

'Nothing short of epic' Rosie Talbot, bestselling author of Sixteen Souls
'A thrilling fantasy with the most delicious slow-burn romance' M.A. Kuzniar, bestselling author of Midnight in Everwood
'[A] titillating debut' Publishers Weekly
'A masterpiece' Goodreads Reader Review
'Everyone needs to read it' TikTok Review
'The BEST book I've read' NetGalley Reader Review
'A sizzling slice of fantasy romance' Booksellers Review

Fourth Wing meets The Hunger Games in this epic and sizzling fantasy romance not to be missed.

Only the extraordinary belong in the kingdom of Ilya . . . The exceptional. The Elites.…


Book cover of These Vicious Masks

Lauren Skidmore Author Of What Is Hidden

From my list on masks and masquerades.

Why am I passionate about this?

Masks have been fascinating to me for a long time, in both the literal and metaphorical sense. Whether by choice or not, the masks we wear say a lot about us. It’s also interesting to me how they can represent freedom or captivity, depending on context. At a masquerade, that anonymity provides a sense of freedom, a chance to act like someone you’re not, or the courage to act braver. But when forced into a role or status that comes with certain masks, you can be trapped, forced to act a certain way. The range gives us so much to work with. 

Lauren's book list on masks and masquerades

Lauren Skidmore Why did Lauren love this book?

Set in 1882 England, These Vicious Masks has so many tropes I love in a book. Evelyn’s dry wit and sarcasm are exactly my sense of humor and she’s an intelligent character I enjoyed following. She travels to London to find her missing sister, discovers a society of individuals with X-Men-like abilities, and must use both literal and metaphorical masks to achieve her goals. It’s these metaphorical masks that interest me, how we act differently in different situations, and how we remove them as we grow closer to one another. 

By Tarun Shanker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked These Vicious Masks as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Jane Austen meets X-Men in this thrilling Victorian adventure full of magic and mysticism, perfect for anyone who loves a confident, rebellious heroine, snappy dialogue, and a hint of romance.

England, 1882. Evelyn is bored with society and its expectations. So when her beloved sister, Rose, mysteriously vanishes, she ignores her parents and travels to London to find her, accompanied by the dashing Mr. Kent. But they're not the only ones looking for Rose. The reclusive, young gentleman Sebastian Braddock is also searching for her, claiming that both sisters have special healing powers. Evelyn is convinced that Sebastian must be…


Book cover of Stay with Me

Paul Volponi Author Of The Great G.O.A.T. Debate: The Best of the Best in Everything from Sports to Science

From my list on for fearless readers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I spent 16 years teaching in NYC public schools, six of them on Rikers Island the world's biggest jail where I helped incarcerated teens improve their reading and writing skills. That experience helped to launch me on my own writing career. The job of the author? To hold up a mirror to society and reflect upon the page what the reader may not have experienced yet or missed seeing in the world outside the borders of a book.

Paul's book list on for fearless readers

Paul Volponi Why did Paul love this book?

Griffin is an incredibly sensitive and revealing writer who touches raw emotions. This is my favorite title of his. It's an urban romance between two teens who seemingly don't belong together, bolstered by an incredible bond with a dog. Read it. Love it. Then find yourself wondering what other gems Griffin has penned.

By Paul Griffin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Stay with Me as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 14, 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

A heartbreaking urban romance from award-winning author Paul Griffin

Fifteen-year-olds Cece and Mack didn't expect to fall in love. She's a sensitive A student; he's a high school dropout. But soon they're spending every moment together, bonding over a rescued dog, telling their secrets, making plans for the future. Everything is perfect. Until Mack makes a horrible mistake, and suddenly the future they'd planned becomes impossible. In this stark new reality, both of them must find hope in the memories of what they had, to survive when the person they love can't stay.


Book cover of Keeper of the Lost Cities

Krista Van Dolzer Author Of Earth to Dad

From my list on book series according to my twelve-year-old.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a mom who loves to read (and write!), I’ve always hoped and prayed my kids would fall in love with reading, too. That said, I’ve always been careful not to force them into it, not to somehow make them feel like my hobbies had to be theirs. When my twelve-year-old devoured Harry Potter in mere weeks, I was practically ecstatic. And when I heard her tell her brothers at the height of the pandemic, “Books get you out of the house and let you go somewhere new,” I knew that they’d become for her what they’ve always been for me: a window to another world. 

Krista's book list on book series according to my twelve-year-old

Krista Van Dolzer Why did Krista love this book?

I’ll be honest and admit that I gave up on this series after the second or third book, and yet I strongly suspected that my daughter would enjoy them—and she absolutely did. She loves the elvish cities and how keenly they’re described, and the idea that they’re here, somehow hidden on our world, captured her imagination. Oh, and I’m supposed to tell you that Keefe is hilarious.

By Shannon Messenger,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Keeper of the Lost Cities as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

A New York Times bestselling series
A USA TODAY bestselling series
A California Young Reader Medal-winning series

In this riveting series opener, a telepathic girl must figure out why she is the key to her brand-new world before the wrong person finds the answer first.

Twelve-year-old Sophie has never quite fit into her life. She's skipped multiple grades and doesn't really connect with the older kids at school, but she's not comfortable with her family, either. The reason? Sophie's a Telepath, someone who can read minds. No one knows her secret-at least, that's what she thinks...

But the day Sophie…


Book cover of Force of Fire

Payal Doshi Author Of Rea and the Blood of the Nectar (The Chronicles of Astranthia, Book 1)

From my list on children’s fantasy with South Asian representation.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was born and raised in Mumbai, India, and as a kid I loved to read. But I never saw myself—an Indian girl like me—represented in children’s books before. I didn’t realize how much it affected me until I began writing my first novel at age 23. When I did, I wrote the entire first draft with white characters and set it in a western country. I believed my Indian culture and my experience as an Indian kid was not worth writing about. I was so wrong! Now, with the novels I write, I’m passionate about representation, especially South Asian representation because all kids deserve to see themselves and their cultures in the books they read.

Payal's book list on children’s fantasy with South Asian representation

Payal Doshi Why did Payal love this book?

Easy. Because the protagonist, Pinki, is a fire-breathing rakkhosh a.k.a demon. Need I say more? This book was so much fun to read because you are rooting for a rakkhosh who is trying to control her fire breathing powers while she must protect the Moon Maiden and save the demon realm from snake oppressors. Apart from being an incredible adventure with witty and hilarious dialogue, Sayantani DasGupta expertly weaves in commentary about colonialism and the effects it has on a land and its people.

By Sayantani DasGupta,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Force of Fire as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

From New York Times bestselling author Sayantani DasGupta comes the story of a demon who must embrace her bad to serve the greater good.

Pinki hails from a long line of rakkhosh resisters, demons who have spent years building interspecies relationships, working together to achieve their goal of overthrowing the snakey oppressors and taking back their rights. But she has more important things to worry about, like maintaining her status as fiercest rakkhosh in her class and looking after her little cousins. There is also the teeny tiny detail of not yet being able to control her fire breathing and…


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