Many of us love to settle down for an hour or two reading our favourite novels, while romantic novels are very popular, mainly with women. A good romantic novel can carry us off to places where dreams are made of bringing thrills and excitement into what many see as their dull lives. Heroes and heroines abound in romantic novels and some see this genre as great escapism. Here we take a look at ten superb romantic novels that will set pulses racing. Read on to see if you agree with us!
The Downstairs Maid
The Downstairs maid is a typical upstairs downstairs tale of a servant girl who falls for one of her betters, the future lord of the manor, upstairs. It is a true tale of romance against the odds combined with a riveting story of class distinction that will keep you reading into the early hours.
Written by Rosie Clark the Downstairs Maid tells the story of Emily who is sent into service to earn money for her family when her father is taken ill and is unable to work. Readers who like to read stories involving the class system with a huge piece of romance thrown in will love this great romantic novel.
We also learn much about the era in terms of the hierarchy of a stately house, how servants and masters conducted themselves in days gone by plus the horrors of war. The story has a beautiful heroine and a handsome hero making it a must read for those of us who love a bit of romance against the odds.
Prime Time is a fabulous romantic novel that was shortlisted for the RNA Romantic Comedy Novel Awards 2013. This nomination was well deserved as Prime Time is a superb insight into what it's like to participate in a prime time reality TV show. Written by Jane Wenham Jones who is not only an author but agony aunt and columnist, the book is filled with laugh out loud comic scenarios along with plenty of romance thrown in for good measure.
Prime Time follows Laura a lady who many of us can identify with as she has a slight weight problem, is not as young as she was and is plagued by hormones rushing around her in gay abandon causing mood swings and all the usual problems women suffer as a result. Laura's husband also left her for a younger, thinner model and she is trying hard to keep it together for her son. How will Laura cope with a new found romance in the shape of TV director Cal? How will she cope with fame? Readers must buy Prime Time in order to find out.
Dirty is a fabulous romantic and erotic novel written by award winning author Megan Hart who features many different types of romantic novel in her collection. What happens when a passive woman meets a rich dominant businessman? Dirty, available from Barnes and Noble, tells the story of one such lady and delves into an erotic world that also has romance too making it a must read for those who love to become entrenched in a torrid love affair.
The heroine in this novel, who normally engages in one night stands as she is loath to become involved with her conquests, is the product of an unhappy childhood that has made it hard for her to form relationships but this time around something is different. The book may contain a good deal of erotica but Megan Hart has managed to blend the sexy with the romantic in a very readable way.
The Leopard Prince
Those who love to read historical novels will love this fabulous romantic offering from the pen of award winning historical writer Elizabeth Hoyt. This story however is not all hearts and flowers or polite conversation as it tells the love story of a noble woman and her man servant. This is forbidden love at its best, while readers will find it hard to put the novel down once started.
The Leopard Prince available from Little Brown Book Group is an exciting tale of a woman of means who falls for what many see as a bad lot. Naturally she must keep their liaison secret but can she really hide her passion? The Leopard Prince turns the usual story of lord of the manor beds servant girl on its head making this great book a fabulous narrative that fans of romance novels will love.
Every Woman for Herself
Anyone who has gone through a divorce, finding themselves on the dating scene again, will love this great read from Sunday Times bestselling author Trisha Ashley. The story follows Charlotte, the main character, back to her Yorkshire roots following her divorce from her husband.
Charlotte feels emancipated and is determined to give men a wide berth. This determination doesn't last when Charlotte meets Mace North a local actor and Charlotte decides, to hell with female solidarity its every woman for herself when it comes to bagging your man! Mace is a much sought after chap and Charlotte is blown away by his smouldering looks and attitude. Every Woman for Herself available from Harper Collins is very funny having a fabulous rom com feel that most ladies will really love.
A Night on the Orient Express
The mere thought of the Orient Express brings out the romance in us all, while the author of this amazing novel, Veronica Henry is no exception as she penned the story following a personal trip on the Orient Express.
A Night on the Orient Express, available from Waterstones, tells the story of a group of travellers on their way to Venice from London aboard the famous locomotive. As the journey progresses we learn more about the characters, why they are on the train plus who is romantically entangled with who.
The backdrop of one of the most famous train journeys in the world is the perfect setting for love romance plus a bit of mystery all rolled into one. There is intrigue too, while the threads of romance contained in the stories of the individuals makes for a spell binding read from start to finish.
Fifty Shades of Grey
Readers who like a bit of raunchiness in their romantic novels will certainly like this very adult book written by E L James. Opinion as to whether this book is a literary masterpiece or utter rubbish seems to be split right down the centre with readers either loving it or loathing it. For us we thought it was interesting and can only suggest that you have to read the novel yourself in order to see which side of the line you fall.
Some readers find the erotic story surrounding the books main character Christian Grey who is an obsessive controlling figure hiding inner demons that are waiting to come out, a riveting read that is both sensual, sexy and liberating. Others find the book smutty and short on storyline. Whatever your opinion Fifty Shades of Grey has seen huge success for its writer with follow up novels in the same vein following. The book is available to buy from many outlets including play.com where a used copy is found for the mere price of £1.91.
Black Lies is a brilliantly written story that will have readers riveted from start to finish. Cleverly put together by bestselling American author Alessandra Torre Black Lies shows the reader how when someone loves like the character of this story loves they will do virtually anything to get what or who they want.
A hidden secret is the crux of this story, while to reveal what the secret is would be to ruin the reader's pleasure and intrigue as this book certainly gets your mind doing twists and turns trying to work out what it is. Needless to say it is something that will affect their future forever. Erotic, romantic and certainly seamlessly written Black Lies is a must read that will keep you reading long into the night. The Book Depository will deliver this novel free of charge anywhere in the world so why not order today, romance fans will love it!
Outlander is a romantic time travel novel that is both unusual and spellbinding at the same time. Written by Diana Gabaldon Outlander has since been made into a TV series but we think readers should definitely read the novel first before watching the series.
Goodreads website feature Outlander and list a number of outlets where the book can be accessed. The story begins in 1945 when Nurse Claire Randall is visiting England with her husband to celebrate a second honeymoon. Claire steps through a time portal and finds herself standing in the Scottish Highlands in 1743 where she meets a brave handsome highlander who she falls in love with.
How can she manage two loves, her husband in the future and the brave Scotsman in the past? It's a romance of epic proportions with a twist due to the time travel element making it unusual and a must read at the same time.
A Knight in Shining Armor
This is another time travel romance but is very different from Outlander as it is far more gentle a tale of romance and fantasy. Written by Jude Devereux a knight in Shining Armor is a wonderful love story that is also sexy and timeless.
Our heroine falls in love with a sixteenth century knight who appears to her inside a church where she is lamenting the loss of her boyfriend and is begging for someone to help her in her sorrow. The love affair that they embark on takes them into the past where they do indeed have things that bind them leading them into a fantastic adventure readers will not want to miss.
Travelling back and forth from Elizabethan times to present day the pair has to prove the knights innocence as he is accused of being a traitor to the crown. This is a romance with a unique twist, while readers can buy a Knight in Shining Armor from The Book Depository where worldwide delivery is free of charge.