The Monday List: My Favorite Romance Novels

the monday list

I’ve been having a fantastic time putting together my Curated Bookshelf every month, but there are some themes where I just can’t find 12 books for it (yet). So I’ve decided to share these shorter lists on Mondays (most Mondays, at least). I hope you enjoy!

Well, it’s been a while since I’ve posted one of these, hasn’t it? I’m slowly getting back into regularly blogging, so I thought I’d work to bring back The Monday List. Most Mondays, anyways. With Valentine’s Day coming up, I want to spend a couple of lists doing love related lists, starting with my favorite romances! I’m not a big fan of romances, preferring books that nicely mix women’s fiction and romance, but, over the past couple of years, I’ve come to actually enjoy some romance novels.

Six Feet Apart: Love in Quarantine by Elena Greyrock

six feet apart elena greyrock

A light and playful romance! Passion is contagious in this offbeat, humorous journey making life in the pandemic a little more bearable.

When Luna, a reluctant, wanna-be influencer meets Stryker, a mysterious undiscovered musician, everything changes in ways that keep you guessing. He is self absorbed, and thinks the world revolves around him. She is beautiful, yet shy, and struggles with attention.

A quirky character, Luna’s voice is fresh and bubbly. There are some futuristic nuances in the book that make it hard to put down as you follow the hilarity and complexities of Luna and Stryker’s relationship unfold among uncertain times–who will find redemption? Featuring original songs!

I’m not ready for COVID books, but this one sounded sweet and delightful, so I decided to take a chance. I’m so glad I did because, while not perfect, it had a lovely romance. It’s a story of two hot people falling for each other, but it’s also more than that. It had them going their separate ways and really working to develop themselves for, hopefully, a stronger love.

Talk Bookish to Me by Kate Bromley

Talk Bookish to Me by Kate Bromley

Inspiration can come from the most unlikely—and inconvenient—sources.

Kara Sullivan’s life is full of love—albeit fictional. As a bestselling romance novelist and influential bookstagrammer, she’s fine with getting her happily-ever-after fix between the covers of a book.

But right now? Not only is Kara’s best friend getting married next week—which means big wedding stress—but the deadline for her next novel is looming, and she hasn’t written a single word. The last thing she needs is for her infuriating first love, Ryan Thompson, to suddenly appear in the wedding party. But Ryan’s unexpected arrival sparks a creative awakening in Kara that inspires the steamy historical romance she desperately needs to deliver.

With her wedding duties intensifying, her deadline getting closer by the second and her bills not paying themselves, Kara knows there’s only one way for her to finish her book and to give her characters the ever-after they deserve. But can she embrace the unlikely, ruggedly handsome muse—who pushes every one of her buttons—to save the wedding, her career and, just maybe, write her own happy ending?

So, there’s a whole part of this book that I just didn’t like, which is something I dislike in any book, so that definitely affected my feelings about this one. But…I adored the banter in the first half of the book. It was a ton of fun, and that’s really why I loved this book despite the thing that happened.

Ship Wrecked by Olivia Dade

ship wrecked olivia dade

After All the Feels and Spoiler Alert, Olivia Dade once again delivers a warm and wonderful romantic comedy about two co-stars who once had an incredible one-night stand—and after years of filming on the same remote island, are finally ready to yield to temptation again…

Maria’s one-night-stand—the thick-thighed, sexy Viking of a man she left without a word or a note—just reappeared. Apparently, Peter’s her surly Gods of the Gates co-star, and they’re about to spend the next six years filming on a desolate Irish island together. She still wants him…but he now wants nothing to do with her.

Peter knows this role could finally transform him from a forgettable character actor into a leading man. He also knows a failed relationship with Maria could poison the set, and he won’t sabotage his career for a woman who’s already walked away from him once. Given time, maybe they can be cooperative colleagues or friends—possibly even best friends—but not lovers again. No matter how much he aches for her.

For years, they don’t touch off-camera. But on their last night of filming, their mutual restraint finally shatters, and all their pent-up desire explodes into renewed passion. Too bad they still don’t have a future together, since Peter’s going back to Hollywood, while Maria’s returning to her native Sweden. She thinks she needs more than he can give her, but he’s determined to change her mind, and he’s spent the last six years waiting. Watching. Wanting.

His shipwrecked Swede doesn’t stand a chance.

Of all three books in the series, while I really enjoyed Spoiler Alert, I really loved this one. Maria was just amazing, and I loved everything about her and how she turned their small crew into a family and even brought out the best, and worst, in Peter. They were just so adorable together.

The Friendship List by Susan Mallery

Book Blog Tour - review of The Friendship List by Susan Mallery
  • Dance till dawn
  • Go skydiving
  • Wear a bikini in public
  • Start living

Two best friends jump-start their lives in a summer that will change them forever

Single mom Ellen Fox couldn’t be more content—until she overhears her son saying he can’t go to his dream college because she needs him too much. If she wants him to live his best life, she has to convince him she’s living hers.

So Unity Leandre, her best friend since forever, creates a list of challenges to push Ellen out of her comfort zone. Unity will complete the list, too, but not because she needs to change. What’s wrong with a thirtysomething widow still sleeping in her late husband’s childhood bed?

The Friendship List begins as a way to make others believe they’re just fine. But somewhere between “wear three-inch heels” and “have sex with a gorgeous guy,” Ellen and Unity discover that life is meant to be lived with joy and abandon, in a story filled with humor, heartache and regrettable tattoos.

This is about two lifelong friends who spend a summer opening themselves back up to love. One has always been a single mother, and even her teen son thinks that’s sad, so she ends up chaperoning a field trip along the West Coast along with a very handsome coach, and all sorts of fun things happen. The other is a widow who’s still hung up on her late husband, but one elderly lady knows just the man for her even if she’s not ready to love again. I loved the friendship between these two women, and their romances were a lot of fun, too.

Battle Royal by Lucy Parker

battle royal by Lucy Parker


Four years ago, Sylvie Fairchild charmed the world as a contestant on the hit baking show, Operation Cake. Her ingenious, creations captivated viewers and intrigued all but one of the judges, Dominic De Vere. When Sylvie’s unicorn cake went spectacularly sideways, Dominic was quick to vote her off the show. Since then, Sylvie has used her fame to fulfill her dream of opening a bakery. The toast of Instagram, Sugar Fair has captured the attention of the Operation Cake producers…and a princess.


Dominic is His Majesty the King’s favorite baker and a veritable British institution. He’s brilliant, talented, hard-working. And an icy, starchy grouch. Learning that Sylvie will be joining him on the Operation Cake judging panel is enough to make the famously dour baker even more grim. Her fantastical baking is only slightly more troublesome than the fact that he can’t stop thinking about her pink-streaked hair and irrepressible dimple.


When Dominic and Sylvie learn they will be fighting for the once in a lifetime opportunity to bake a cake for the upcoming wedding of Princess Rose, the flour begins to fly as they fight to come out on top.

The bride adores Sylvie’s quirky style. The palace wants Dominic’s classic perfection.

In this royal battle, can there be room for two?

One word: cake. I loved this one because of all the baking and delightful sweets, but the romance was a lot of fun, too. I have my favorite scenes and just love to revisit them any time I can. It’s a sweet romance, even if it seems to get serious pretty fast.

Honestly, if I were going with women’s fiction paired with romance there would probably be a lot more books on this list. As it is, I had to really dig deep for some of these, and there aren’t even many on the list! At least it expanded from a measly 3 to 5. What can I say? Strict romance novels are just not my thing.

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