The most recommended dating books

Who picked these books? Meet our 84 experts.

84 authors created a book list connected to dating, and here are their favorite dating books.
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Book cover of Perfect Chemistry

Mindy Hardwick Author Of Weaving Magic

From my list on YA romance bad boys.

Who am I?

Bad boys in young adult romance have always been one of my favorite tropes to read. For seven years, I facilitated a poetry workshop with teens in a juvenile detention center and got to hear their stories—the heartbreak, the challenges, and the triumphs under all that bad boy façade. My memoir, Kids in Orange: Voices from Juvenile Detention, is about the workshops and helped me understand both myself as a writer and the “bad boys” who wrote poetry each week. There are a lot of complexities to bad boy characters and the most satisfying stories are the ones where the bad boys redeem themselves and find love. 

Mindy's book list on YA romance bad boys

Mindy Hardwick Why did Mindy love this book?

Perfect Chemistry is one of the books I read as a model for writing the character relationship between my young adult novel characters, Shantel and Christopher. Alex is the perfectly crafted bad boy character who falls in love with Brittany and in the process is changed with how he sees his life. 

By Simone Elkeles,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Perfect Chemistry 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?

From the New York Times bestselling author Simone Elkeles comes an epic love story like no other . . . First in the gripping PERFECT CHEMISTRY series, this is the next addictive read for fans of Anna Todd's AFTER series, and Caroline Kepnes's YOU.

When Brittany Ellis walks into chemistry class on the first day of senior year, she has no clue that her carefully created 'perfect' life is about to unravel before her eyes. Forced to be lab partners with Alex Fuentes, a gang member from the other side of town, Brittany finds herself having to protect everything she's…


Book cover of Fat Chance, Charlie Vega

David Valdes Author Of Finding My Elf

From my list on romantics dying for something different.

Who am I?

As I mention in my book picks, I’m a romantic. I love stories with characters who have big emotions, even more so if they face unique challenges. And I have always loved reading – I was the kid lugging 12 books home from the library. (Technically, we were only allowed six at a time, but I used my brother’s library account and checked out his share too!) Reading that many books, I discovered that a lot of the plots get repeated, so I’m always on the lookout for something fresh. In my previous Young Adult novels, I’ve tried to put my own stamp on romance by focusing on queer protagonists and kids of color.

David's book list on romantics dying for something different

David Valdes Why did David love this book?

I come from a fat family. The healthiest version of me is still fat to some people.

Growing up, I worried that no one would like me (or love me!) because of my size. I would have killed for a book like Fat Chance, Charlie Vega, whose protagonist shares those fears, even as she falls for a cute classmate and navigates the opinions of friends and family.

In a society that often excludes people her size, Charlie gets to be the lead in a fresh spin on high school love stories.

By Crystal Maldonado,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Fat Chance, Charlie Vega 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?

Coming of age as a Fat brown girl in a white Connecticut suburb is hard. Harder when your whole life is on fire, though.

A NEW ENGLAND BOOK AWARD WINNER!

Charlie Vega is a lot of things. Smart. Funny. Artistic. Ambitious. Fat.

People sometimes have a problem with that last one. Especially her mom. Charlie wants a good relationship with her body, but it's hard, and her mom leaving a billion weight loss shakes on her dresser doesn't help. The world and everyone in it have ideas about what she should look like: thinner, lighter, slimmer-faced, straighter-haired. Be smaller. Be…


Book cover of Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime of Love

Marcia Naomi Berger Author Of Marriage Minded: An A to Z Dating Guide for Lasting Love

From my list on dating toward marriage.

Who am I?

Marcia Naomi Berger's passion is to help people create lasting, fulfilling marriages. An experienced clinical social worker, psychotherapist, and medical school clinical faculty member, Berger has held senior-level positions in child welfare, alcoholism treatment, and psychiatry. She says, "I stayed single for a long time because of my parent's divorce. Now happily married for over thirty-four years, I fill my books with the hard-earned wisdom I've gained professionally and personally."  

Marcia's book list on dating toward marriage

Marcia Naomi Berger Why did Marcia love this book?

This book can help many communication-challenged couples. It offers specific guidance on how to talk about topics for partners to address to foster long-term happiness. Couples who are dating and not yet committed will learn if deal-breakers exist by having conversations about whether they want children, what fidelity means to them, whether they're likely to support each other's goals and dreams, and more.

I strongly agree with the authors' ideas about addressing conflict with the goal of understanding rather than winning, making your relationship your top priority to succeed in marriage, and having fun together.

Many happily married people implement the ideas naturally without following the Eight Dates formula. However, as a couples therapist, I know that many will benefit from having the kinds of conversations the authors prescribe. I'm recommending this book to couples in my practice.

By John Gottman, Julie Schwartz Gottman, Doug Abrams , Rachel Carlton Abrams

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Happily Ever After is not by chance - it's By Choice.

John and Julie Gottman are cofounders of the Gottman Institute, bestselling authors, and award-winning researchers. Together, they have a deep understanding of what makes relationships work. Now, they bring that lifetime's worth of knowledge, research, and wisdom to bear in Eight Dates, a program of how, why, and when to have eight basic conversations with your partner that can result in a lifetime of love. Eight Dates is written for any serious couple, and its dates are structured around the concepts of trust, dealing with conflict, sex and intimacy,…


Fourth and Long

By Britt Belle,

Book cover of Fourth and Long

Britt Belle Author Of The Earl Was Wrong

New book alert!

Who am I?

Author Romance reader Romance writer Sports lover

Britt's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Plus, Britt's 6-year-old's favorite books.

What is my book about?

Fourth and Long is a novel written in the first person with dual POVs.

Ellie: When I meet Slater, an infamous quarterback trying to salvage his career, I know better than to form expectations. Our relationship starts out casual, but I can’t help falling for him. The problem is, that he’s leaving as soon as he signs with a new team, and I have no choice but to let him go.

Slater: I can’t risk distractions, so when I hook up with Ellie, I tell myself she’s nothing but a pretty girl. We keep it casual because as soon as the ink is dry on my new contract, I’ll be hundreds of miles away. She follows my rules and lets me go without a fight, but even though football consumes me, I can’t forget her.

Fourth and Long

By Britt Belle,

What is this book about?

Ellie
My professional life is a failure—I’ve convinced more couples to divorce than to work on their marriages. My personal life is a mess—my mother wants my attention, but not my advice, my father is pushing me to bond with his second family, and my sister, who likes to meddle in my love life, thinks I need to get laid.

When I meet Slater, an infamous quarterback trying to salvage his career, I know better than to form expectations. Our relationship starts out casual, but as our lives become more intertwined, I can’t help falling for him. Problem is, he’s…


Book cover of Take a Hint, Dani Brown

Gia De Cadenet Author Of Not the Plan

From my list on helping romance lovers remember who they are.

Who am I?

As a long-time expat in France, a creative and a Black woman, I get othered and rejected a lot. I’ve had to learn how to own my story – of starting over, of building something from nothing, of remembering where I’ve been, and reminding myself of where I’m going. I had to learn to reject the labels that others want to put on me and draft my own personal hype mantra then embellish it with a little bombshell sparkle. The books I’ve chosen are meant to entertain while giving you the chance to remind yourself of who you are and who you can choose to be.  

Gia's book list on helping romance lovers remember who they are

Gia De Cadenet Why did Gia love this book?

Dani Brown is career-focused and does not have time for a relationship (like my lead Isadora) – but great sex is always on the menu.

When she thinks she’s found a good partner in brooding ex-rugby player Zaf (who reads romance novels on the sly!), the universe conspires to put them in a fake dating relationship for the sake of publicity for a children’s charity.

You can never go wrong with Talia Hibbert, but I particularly enjoyed Take a Hint because Dani is very clear on who she is and what she wants. Owning your wants and honoring them is – say it with me – truly badass.

By Talia Hibbert,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Take a Hint, Dani Brown as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Talia Hibbert is a rockstar! Her writing is smart, funny, and sexy' Meg Cabot

'The author's charm and wit sings off the page in this delightful fake-romance fare' Bolu Babalola, bestselling author of Love in Colour

USA Today bestselling author Talia Hibbert returns with another charming romantic comedy about a young woman who agrees to fake date her friend after a video of him 'rescuing' her from their office building goes viral - perfect for fans of Sally Thorne, Jasmine Guillory and Helen Hoang!

Danika Brown knows what she wants: professional success, academic renown and an occasional roll in the…


Book cover of Introverts in Love: The Quiet Way to Happily Ever After

Jennifer B. Kahnweiler Author Of The Genius of Opposites: How Introverts and Extroverts Achieve Extraordinary Results Together

From my list on for partners of opposite personalities.

Who am I?

I grew up in a talkative family in an extroverted culture near NYC. I discovered I also liked the quiet and found a man to marry who was very introverted. After the “opposites attract” phase we needed to learn ways to make our differences work and we've been doing that for almost 50 years. I took this knowledge to the workplace where, as a career coach and learning and development professional, I became a champion for introverts. I've written 4 books on harnessing the talents of both introverts and extroverts at work and speak about this topic around the world. I believe we are all better off when we work through our differences to achieve magic.

Jennifer's book list on for partners of opposite personalities

Jennifer B. Kahnweiler Why did Jennifer love this book?

I had a great deal of respect for this author from reading her Psychology Today columns. Sophia Dembling is an introvert and from her research and personal experience knows that relationships between different personality types can be challenging to say the least. 

She takes us through all aspects of the dating process and doesn’t slam extroverts. What she does is show us, through her great wit and transparency, how we are not perfect but that we can balance each other. 

Dembling teaches introverts “how to let someone into their hearts while honoring the solitude we need..” I found myself laughing many times, even while reading the table of contents. “Whee! Fun With Extroverts” and “I Love you But Please Don’t Call Me.” And she helps extroverted readers understand and empathize with introverts who don’t find joy in too much socializing. 

By Sophia Dembling,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Introverts in Love as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the author of The Introvert’s Way, a friendly and accessible guide to dating and relationships for introverts.

Love is tricky for everyone--and different personality types can face their own unique problems. Now the author of The Introvert’s Way offers a guide to romance that takes you through the frequently outgoing world of dating, courting, and relationships, helping you navigate issues that are particular to introverts, from making conversation at parties to the challenges of dating an extrovert.


Book cover of By Your Side

Sara Jo Cluff Author Of Daphne's Questionable Bet

From my list on surviving teenage years while living with anxiety.

Who am I?

I’ve been living with anxiety since I was a child. I had no idea what it was back then, or how much it controlled my life. I wish I had the numerous resources that we have today, and all the knowledge at our fingertips. For me, the way to really truly understand something is through a story. Seeing a beautifully chaotic life unfold before me, and riding alongside the characters, offers me so much hope and lets me know I’m not alone in this. You are not alone in the anxiety battle. By working together, sharing our stories, we’ll find a way through the darkest times and embrace the light.

Sara's book list on surviving teenage years while living with anxiety

Sara Jo Cluff Why did Sara love this book?

Going through anxiety can be tough and lonesome. I know most of us are stubborn and want to go things alone, just like Autumn does in this book. West paints a picture of how keeping our trials to ourselves can hold us back and keep us from growing. It can damage friendships and relationships. By giving your close friends and family a chance to see the world through your eyes, you’re giving them a way to truly and deeply understand you, which is all anyone really wants.

By Kasie West,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked By Your Side 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?

An irresistible story from Kasie West that explores the timeless question: What do you do when you fall for the person you least expect?

When Autumn Collins finds herself accidentally locked in the library for an entire weekend, she doesn’t think things could get any worse. But that’s before she realizes that Dax Miller is locked in with her.

Autumn doesn’t know much about Dax except that he’s trouble. Between the rumors about the fight he was in (and that brief stint in juvie that followed it) and his reputation as a loner, he’s not exactly the ideal person to…


Book cover of Out of the Blue

Jen Desmarais Author Of Crushing It

From my list on queer cozy YA romances that make you want to fall in love.

Who am I?

When I was a teenager, I didn’t have romance in my life. I was so extremely shy that I could barely look at people I thought were cute, let alone talk to them. I lived vicariously through books. Now that I’m older (and way less shy), I still love reliving that time of my life through books. How would I have reacted differently in the same situation? How would things have been different if I had been more outgoing? Only recently, I realized that I was queer, and I’ve been slowly dipping my toes into that world as well.

Jen's book list on queer cozy YA romances that make you want to fall in love

Jen Desmarais Why did Jen love this book?

This was my first read of Jason’s work, and I was pleasantly surprised by just how much I loved it.

The mythology of the world was incredibly well-built, and I loved it when the humans got involved, too. The fat rep was incredible. It’s amazing to read about characters described like myself. The non-binary rep was excellent.

Overall, this was a fun read that I borrowed from the library and then bought because I loved it.

By Jason June,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Out of the Blue 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!

From Jason June, author of the breakout teen debut novel Jay's Gay Agenda, comes Out of the Blue, a stand-alone dual POV queer rom-com that asks if love is enough to change everything you've grown up believing. Perfect for fans of Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas and Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly.

Crest is not excited to be on their Journey: the month-long sojourn on land all teen merfolk must undergo. The rules are simple: Help a human within one moon cycle and return to Pacifica to become an Elder-or fail and remain stuck…


Book cover of A Taste for Love

Jenn P. Nguyen Author Of Fake It Till You Break It

From my list on YA books about first love and discovering yourself.

Who am I?

As a kid, I’ve always loved reading romances, even if it meant spending my recesses in the library and reading through lunchtime. This resulted in my 6th-grade teacher giving me the weirdest look when she caught me reading a romance at school. When I started writing, I wrote a couple of different genres to test out, but YA contemporary romances were always the ones that stuck with me. I loved writing about the fluttery feelings of first love and the complexities of an uncertain future. It also helps that I met my husband, the love of my life, in high school so I’ll always have a soft spot for books that make me feel that way again.

Jenn's book list on YA books about first love and discovering yourself

Jenn P. Nguyen Why did Jenn love this book?

I picked up A Taste for Love while I was browsing the aisles at Barnes and Noble and the description and gorgeous cover immediately caught my eye. Sometimes it is hard to rewrite a classic story and make it your own, but Jennifer Yen does it beautifully here. I completely forgot that it was a retelling of Pride and Prejudice as I was swept away in Liza’s life and all the laugh-out-loud antics of her family and friends. I’m also a huge fan of Top Chef so all the cooking in this book only made me hungry for more.  

By Jennifer Yen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Taste for Love 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?

For fans of Jenny Han, Jane Austen, and The Great British Baking Show, A Taste for Love, is a delicious rom com about first love, familial expectations, and making the perfect bao.

To her friends, high school senior Liza Yang is nearly perfect. Smart, kind, and pretty, she dreams big and never shies away from a challenge. But to her mom, Liza is anything but. Compared to her older sister Jeannie, Liza is stubborn, rebellious, and worst of all, determined to push back against all of Mrs. Yang's traditional values, especially when it comes to dating.

The one thing mother…


Book cover of Drawn That Way

Miel Moreland Author Of It Goes Like This

From my list on young adult about ambitious girls.

Who am I?

I was an ambitious teen, and as I entered adulthood, my relationship with ambition has continually evolved. Those of us with marginalized genders sometimes have our ambition treated with suspicion or scorn—by peers, family, or would-be mentors. I wanted to share books that don’t necessarily come to the same conclusion about ambition’s role in our lives, but that all grapple with what it means to be ambitious in a culture where that is often seen as threatening or unladylike—or where any sign of ambition gets one automatically labeled as “unlikeable.” I love these books’ narrators, and I hope you will find something to love in them too. 

Miel's book list on young adult about ambitious girls

Miel Moreland Why did Miel love this book?

Hayley is thrilled to be accepted to a prestigious summer program for aspiring teen animators. But then only boys are chosen to direct the participants’ short films, and that might only scratch the surface of the boys’ club culture within the program. The multiple forms of sexism Hayley experiences throughout are so real, they were painful to read (in the best, truest way), as I reflected on my own experiences with misogynistic gatekeeping—but the community and solidarity that develop throughout this fantastic novel are very satisfying. 

By Elissa Sussman, Arielle Jovellanos (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Drawn That Way as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 11, 12, 13, and 14.

What is this book about?

“Packs a swoony punch along with its feminist rage.” —Maurene Goo, author of Somewhere Only We Know

Moxie meets the world of animation in this fresh, unputdownable novel about a teen girl determined to prove herself in the boys’ club of her dream industry no matter what it takes.

Hayley Saffitz is confident, ambitious, and intent on following in the footsteps of her hero, renowned animation director, Bryan Beckett. When she’s given a spot in his once-in-a-lifetime summer program, Hayley devises a plan: snag one of the internship’s coveted directing opportunities. Dazzle Bryan with her talent. Secure a job post-graduation.…


Book cover of My Favorite Half-Night Stand

Michelle Angelle Author Of Dear Pink: A Romantic Comedy

From my list on best stage-stealing sidekicks.

Who are we?

A sidekick is someone who knows you better than you know yourself. Someone who will travel 750 miles on your wedding day, and then help you escape out of a window before you make a huge mistake. A sidekick is someone who will have your back, even when you’re making some of the most ridiculous decisions of your life. We're best friends, writing partners, and each other’s sidekicks. We write books that reward every struggle with a happy ending because life is not always kind. We create characters who inspire us to keep laughing and encourage readers to laugh with us. Here’s hoping everyone has a humorous sidekick in his or her life.

Michelle's book list on best stage-stealing sidekicks

Michelle Angelle Why did Michelle love this book?

A friends-to-lovers romance like this one by Christina Lauren never gets old, but sometimes the rules of “romance novels” can restrain the two main characters and make their love story feel a little dated and monotonous. Well-written sidekicks, however, are free agents. They can have outrageous backstories and hilarious quirks that inject much-appreciated chaos into the story. This is the case with Reid and Millie’s funny group of fellow academics, Chris, Ed, and Alex. The fact that they are more interesting than the two main characters is no downside. This unabashed friend group is so interesting that it is a welcome addition to the main story plot. This romantic comedy lets you have your sidekick cake and eat it too, and isn’t that what we want in any good romcom? Let us all eat cake!

By Christina Lauren,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked My Favorite Half-Night Stand as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

By the New York Times bestselling author who “hilariously depicts modern dating” (Us Weekly), My Favorite Half-Night Stand is a laugh-out-loud romp through online dating and its many, many fails.

Millie Morris has always been one of the guys. A UC Santa Barbara professor, she’s a female-serial-killer expert who’s quick with a deflection joke and terrible at getting personal. And she, just like her four best guy friends and fellow professors, is perma-single.

So when a routine university function turns into a black tie gala, Mille and her circle make a pact that they’ll join an online dating service to…