I absolutely adore slow burn romance novels, and my love runs deep. I mean, I have a specific shelf on Goodreads and an entire page dedicated solely to slow burn books. I seek them out on social media and Amazon, I follow other slow burn readers for recommendations, and I always come back to my tried-and-true favorite authors for regular doses of character-driven, long-game romance.
So, I figured that I would do a round-up of some of my favorite slow burn romances of the year (so far). If you’ve read any of these, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Also, if you have any other recs for me to check out, leave those in the comments, too. I need allll the slow burns in my life!
1. Motion by Penny Reid
Penny Reid is one author I come back to time and again. I love her quirky and intelligent characters, smart writing that challenges me to learn something new (with topics like Bitcoin when it was virtually unknown and, occasionally, words that require a dictionary), and storylines that are anything but formulaic.
Motion is the first book in the verrrry slow-burning Laws of Physics trilogy (and part of the Hypothesis series) and each book had me dropping everything to read it the minute it hit my Kindle. All three books are out now, so you don’t have to suffer the cliffhanger endings between books like I did!
2. Make Me Bad by R.S. Grey
R.S. Grey is another automatic-read for me. Her rom-coms never fail to make me laugh out loud, her characters are always charming, and they usually start out as enemies which is one of my favorite tropes.
Make Me Bad is one of my favorites because of the introverted librarian heroine, the sweet knight in shining armor hero, and the witty banter throughout the entire book.
One things for sure, Grey has me hooked and I keep coming back for more!
3. The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren
Mortal enemies, a free ‘honeymoon’ vacation in Hawaii, a fake relationship, and forced proximity with said enemy? YES, PLEASE! Add the smart writing, excellent banter, and hilarious shenanigans to all that, and The Unhoneymooners makes my Best Reads of the YEAR list. I loved this one so much, I’ve already reread the paperback and I’m about to listen to the audiobook.
4. The Bride Test by Helen Hoang
After reading and loving The Kiss Quotient, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on The Bride Test, and Helen Hoang didn’t disappoint! I loved Khai and Esme’s journey from a potential arranged marriage to an actual couple. The characters are real and flawed and I just loved them.
5. Rock Bottom Girl by Lucy Score
Somehow this was my first book by Lucy Score, but I absolutely fell in love with her writing in Rock Bottom Girl. It’s a charming small-town romance with dry, sarcastic humor (my fave!), smart wit, and relatable characters. Not only was it hilarious and entertaining, it was heartwarming to boot–and Jake may be the swooniest teacher ever written.
Are any of your favorites here? I’d love to hear your suggestions for more slow burns to add to my list, so leave me a comment below with your best reads!