So, Valentine’s Day is this Saturday.
We at 80 Books Blog understand that not everyone is looking forward to this particular holiday. We have mixed feelings ourselves. Wasn’t St. Valentine stoned to death as a heretic? Isn’t this just an excuse for Hallmark, florists, and Hershey to rip you off? Never mind the ridiculous and probably overpriced Prix Fixe menus at your favorite restaurants.
But, we’re big fans of love in general, you know. Kisses and hugs, snuggles, long talks, and when your guy says “come here” in just that way. You know the way we’re talking about.
So, no matter your feelings about V-Day, we have a few book recs to help set the mood, even the “this is just commercial BS” mood.
If Happily Ever After Is Your Thing:
Lucky Harbor Series by Jill Shalvis: This series is so sweet. Each of the protagonists have a bit of a secret, but they are ultimately perfect for each other. It’s only after moving to this fictional Pacific Northwest seaside town that they find one another. Pick up books 1-13 in any order.
The Guardian by Nicholas Sparks: Nicholas Sparks should just stop publishing these formulaic love stories, but this one is just as powerful as The Notebook or A Walk to Remember. It’s about a woman who has to choose between two men in her life, but one of them turns out to be dangerous. There may also be a dog involved. Tear jerker!
Wait for You by Jennifer Armentrout (writing as J. Lynn): A new adult romance about a woman in college who was raped in high school, but no one believed her (and now she’s running from her past), and a guy who has made some mistakes to protect those he loves. After some hesitation, they come together in perfect harmony.
The Princess Bride by William Goldman: Classic love story of a woman whose love is lost and she is forced to marry a prince. Her love returns and rescues her. With a kiss that defines all kisses.
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell: That first love story that we all wish we had as teenagers. New girl Eleanor finds a soul mate in Park over a love of comic books and being different. Though they face some pretty serious obstacles, they find their way back to each other in the end.
If Love Is a Four-Letter Word To You:
The Paris Wife by Paula McClain: The book in which we all learn to hate Ernest Hemingway. In this novel, Hemingway’s first wife, Hadley, tells of the time they lived in Paris and were doing great, but as the marriage deteriorated, Ernest became distant. At one point, they are sleeping in the same bed, but her friend comes in the room (his soon to be 2nd wife) and has sex with Ernest. Hadley can hear them! She is in the same bed! Disgusting.
Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare: Does this one really need a description. Everyone always thinks of this as the classic love story. Do you realize that the title is actually The TRAGEDY of Romeo and Juliet? Yeah, let that sink in…
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn: You can’t get much more anti-love than the story of two horrible people, who do horrible things to each other, and then are forced to live unhappily ever after together.
You by Carolyn Kepnes: Ah, the classic stalker-turned-killer story. It makes it even better that the object of the main character’s obsession isn’t very likable either. Don’t feel too guilty if you actually feel bad for psycho Joe.
A Farewell To Arms by Ernest Hemingway: We’ve already established that ol’ Ernie was a bit of a dick. In this novel, lovers meet during the war, are frequently separated, and one of them dies.The End. Also, Hemingway couldn’t write a well-rounded female character to save his life.
So, what’s on your Love Day reading list? That is, of course, if you’re not out eating those overpriced dinners and chocolates. Or shooting darts at a picture of your ex… Really, if you are, pick up one of the HEA books. Like right now.