Books·Posted on Dec 12, 2022These 12 Romance Novels Will Knock Your Socks Off, But You'll Still Feel WarmGrab a blanket, dim the lights (but obviously not all of them, a book light is needed), and get ready to be put into a winter mood that is anything but chilly.by EmilyBondBuzzFeed ContributorFacebookPinterestTwitterMailLink 1. End of Story by Kylie Scott Graydon House Release date: February 14, 2023What it's about: What if the very start of a romance book begins with a couple fated for divorce? New York Times bestselling author Kylie Scott's latest is sexy and funny with a metaphysical "what-if" floating throughout the plot. Shortly after charismatic social media maven Susie inherits her late aunt's bungalow, she hires a renovation company to update the home. But when her contractor turns out to be her stuck-up ex’s best friend, Lars, the same man who witnessed her humiliating breakup six months ago, her reno dreams seemingly crumble. While Lars grapples with loyalties to his best friend and Susie navigates her own commitment issues, they can’t seem to deny the inevitable. The sex scenes have a few false starts and funny moments that only add to an authentic feel. They aren’t particularly over-the-top, but thankfully, they are there. Get it from Bookshop here! 2. Radiant Sin by Katee Robert Sourcebooks, Casablanca Release date: February 7, 2023What it's about: If you're into Greek myths, a bold, quick-tongued female main character that isn't waifish thin, and a male love interest that happens to be a god, a cinnamon roll, and a "dom" in the bedroom, then the fourth in this series is for you. Radiant Sin is an intense retelling of the Greek god Apollo and Cassandra's story set in an urban fantasy world that is fast-paced, sexy, and at times violent. Cassandra's disdain for the power structure of her world, which led to the deaths of her parents, and need to feel unattached keep her at an emotional distance from the one god seemingly unlike the rest, Apollo, who is also her boss. When a forced work party/sleepover doubles as an undercover reconnaissance mission, Apollo and Casandra are essentially forced to play lovers, an easy game to play, since they’ve got years of pent-up physical attraction neither had dared to act on. Think Clue, but add in political intrigue within the modern world of Olympus and, of course...very adult moments. Get it from Bookshop here! 3. Good Girl by Anna Fitzpatrick ECW Press Release date: January 17, 2023What it's about: I’m calling it, Anna Fitzpatrick’s novel Good Girl is going to be a cult-favorite if not on many people’s must-read lists. This is not a romance novel, it’s fiction — with Maggie Gyllenhaal Secretary-esque BDSM romps and sexual dalliances fans of Fleabag will eat up. Fitzpatrick takes romance tropes and flips them on their head — then slaps them. Everything about Good Girl is an exercise in self-reflection; you can’t help but project your own past experiences, intimate desires, kinks, and, oddly enough, judgments of what a "healthy" sexual relationship means while reading this book. And Fitzpatrick clearly gets the millennial malaise in this book, which follows the life of late-20-something Lucy, a bookstore worker and hopeful writer living in Toronto. Lucy tries most of her life to be a “good girl,” whatever that means, but is knocked down by insecurities, societal expectations, and an overbearing mother. But what Lucy wants, or believes she wants, is the type of dominant, submissive relationship that will completely consume her.Get it from Bookshop here! 4. Witcha Gonna Do? by Avery Flynn Berkley Books Release date: December 6, 2022What it's about: Flynn wants you to feel like you’re hearing about your best friend’s latest romantic adventures — it’s meant to be a fun read that keeps you entertained and giggling. There's a heavy amount of lust and biting dialogue early on between arch-nemesis to lovers Tilda Sherwood and the handsome Gil Connolly, who isn’t what he seems — but to Gil’s surprise, neither is Tilda. Tilda hails from the most powerful witching family in the area, but she appears to be a non-magical human. Whereas Gil is an amped-up magical hottie that is equal parts brooding and powerful. He’s a mix of Indiana Jones, Snape, and Mr. Darcy, and with a secret. And Tilda is a curvy redhead, although prone to hilarious mishaps (a horde of flying monkeys abduct her at one point). She’s a woman with a confident sexual appetite. The pair are continually forced to interact on matchmaking dates by Tilda’s irascible and punk nymph of a godmother, leading them to take on riddle hungry trolls, embarrassing moments in cafes that go viral, and eventually, their own undeniable attraction that just might be more than physical. Witcha Gonna Do? is silly and hot — with both characters competently secure in how to give and receive pleasure — on a train, behind a locked door, in some sort of teleporting type of communication, etc. Get it from Bookshop here! 5. The Wolf and the Wildflower by Ella Fields Ella Fields Release date: December 5, 2022What it's about: Fans of fae, shape-shifting, miscommunication tropes, and a higher spice level count (we’re talking many climaxes over the course of 300 pages) with well-written characters you absolutely ache for, will love The Wolf and the Wildflower. A glance in a tavern between beautiful and elusive Aster and the roguishly good-looking one-eyed commander Scythe bleeds into a week-long banging frenzy — where both keep their bodies explicitly exposed, but their secrets hidden. This book has it all, including a forceful reclaiming, visceral from the powerful need of both characters and the unsaid insecurities and truths they’ve both grappled with. The Wolf and the Wildflower is emotionally gut-wrenching, endearing, and an intense love story high on the spice scale. Get it from Amazon here! 6. A Fire Endless by Rebecca Ross Harper, Voyager Release date: December 6, 2022What it's about: A Fire Endless is the final in the gorgeously written bestselling Elements of Cadence adult fantasy series by international bestseller Rebecca Ross. The duology began with A River Enchanted, a lush, creepy, and deeply romantic story steeped in Scottish mythology and lore. Perfect for fans of the movie Labyrinth and the show Outlander. Set on the magical Isle of Cadence, a place full of capricious spirits and gossiping townsfolk, when young girls begin to go missing on the isle, Jack Tamerlaine, a moody harpist that escaped his home long ago, is summoned by the Laird’s beautiful and strong daughter, Adaira, to return. She believes his particular gift will help find the missing girls, when it would seem the supernatural is just as likely to blame as the mortal. As Jack and Adaira hunt for the girls, their own attraction and trust in one another deepens, forcing Jack to be tied back into a world he felt rejected by years ago. The sequel A Fire Endless, is just as gripping and dark as the first — bringing us back to the isle’s warring clans and tenuous interactions between humans and spirits. Since this is the second in a series that cannot be read as a standalone, it’s best to keep it vague. The sex scenes feel more romantic than explicit, but Ross writes like she's a lyricist playing with the chords of her character's hearts. A Fire Endless is absolutely beautifully written.Get it from Bookshop here! 7. Token by Beverley Kendall Graydon House Release date: January 3, 2023What it's about: Friends to lovers, family entanglements, and a much more cinnamon roll version of Christian Grey á la Fifty Shades of Grey — Token is a smart and sexy romantic comedy. Kennedy Mitchell is the full package; she’s gorgeous, smart, and a professional powerhouse. Along with her college bestie, she co-founded the PR company, Token, that helps corporate clients rebuild their reputations and assists them in diversifying their staff. Things get complicated when Kennedy’s professional and personal life mesh a little too closely — when her co-partner and best friend’s brother Nate (a very sexy and very wealthy CEO) finds himself embroiled in a scandal at his company. He, of course, calls on Token for help, but Kennedy and Nate had a past fling while she was in college, and it would seem feelings never really fizzled out for either of them. Kennedy decides the best defense for Nate’s company and his own reputation is to feign a public relationship between the two of them — except the lines are a little too blurry, and they quickly find themselves in some very heated moments. This is a steamy romance novel that is quick-witted, funny, and dives into contemporary social issues.Get it from Bookshop here! 8. The Gentleman’s Book of Vices by Jess Everlee Carina Adores Release date: November 29, 2022What it's about: The first in the Lucky Lovers series from Jess Everlee, The Gentleman’s Book of Vices is set in Victorian 1880s London and follows the impeccably dressed and frequently inebriated Charlie Price. And Charlie is a man of many vices, a party boy that spends freely, drinks often, and occasionally dabbles in opium. But his indulgent life is about to end when a threatening marriage to a charming woman he doesn’t love will force him to hide not only a part of his true self, but also his prized explicit novel collection. This is a joyful, spicy romance; but with an emotional upheaval of pain and trauma you feel for both of the lovers. Get it from Bookshop here! 9. Twisted by Emily McIntire Bloom Books Release date: February 7, 2023What it's about: Anyone familiar with author Emily McIntire’s previous work knows the heat cometh. The latest in her The Never After Series, a collection of complete stand-alones inspired by different villains, is the very dark and delicious fractured fairytale of Aladdin. Yasmin Karam is the daughter to one of the wealthiest men in the world, but despite his fortune, her beloved father has only known suffering. And when he falls ill, Yasmin is set to make his final days his happiest ones, willing to grant him any wish — which is apparently that she marry a man of his choosing. Unfortunately for Yasmin, she's in love with someone her father would never approve of, a lowly servant and street rat. Desperate, Yasmin makes a bargain with her father's right-hand man, Julian, ignorant of his twisted true agenda — to become the most powerful man in the world. If you dig the romance tropes of forced marriage, enemies to lovers, and a love interest so morally gray you might as well just call them devoid of light — you’re going to love McIntire’s Twisted. Get it from Bookshop here! 10. Skin Deep by Tara Wyatt Tara Wyatt Release date: December 6, 2022What it's about: Wyatt’s latest (you might have read her previous book, Stupid Love) is passionate, sweet, and full of moments that penetrate the page with vulnerability. Skin Deep is about Violet MacAllister and her close friend Hudson Prescott. Violet, who has dyslexia, spent an early childhood being ruthlessly bullied which impacted her self-esteem right into adulthood. When she found a way to express herself through art, that helped to settle something inside her. But the trauma and moments of rejection from her childhood still left scars. She’s kept most of her feelings closely locked up, and her best friend Hudson has no idea that for years she’s desperately wanted to be something more to him. Hudson is artistic, intelligent, tattooed, well-experienced, and handsome. He's everything Violet wants. But like Violet, he's been through a lot — having lost his father as a child, a failed engagement, and recently survived a brutal motorcycle accident that almost killed him. But despite the trauma of his earlier life and relationship failures, Violet has always been a bright spot for Hudson. She’s his closest confidante and friend. So, one day, when she convinces him to pose in the nude for a painting, it finally becomes obvious to Hudson he’s been enamored with her for a very long time. And he’s going to try everything to convince her that she belongs with him, too. Get it from Amazon here! 11. Queen of Myth and Monsters by Scarlett St. Clair Bloom Books Release date: December 20, 2022What it's about: In Queen of Myth and Monsters, the newly crowned queen and recently orphaned Isolde is fully into her recent husband and king, the vampire Adrian. But because of their love — and past lives — the stakes are steep for the pair. A cosmic war is ramping up with goddesses pitting mortals and vampires against one another, and the politics in the Red Palace grow deadlier. St. Clair has done a phenomenal job of fantasy world building, filling the pages with monsters you can’t help but like and decadent moments that are bitten with brutality. There are so many twists and crossovers between book one, King of Battle and Blood, it’s best to read the full series to keep up. St. Clair excels at writing spicy moments, and book two in the series has an abundance of bedroom moments. It has plenty of fast-paced danger, betrayal, revenge, and very “touch him/her and die” vibes. It’s also about an epic and passionate love story. Keeping the details vague, so you’ll be ravenous for the next one. Get it from Bookshop here! 12. Queen of Dust by H. E. Dare Carina Press Release date: January 24, 2023What it's about: The sci-fi fantasy erotica Queen of Dust is like The Bodyguard meets the Disney story of Anastasia, but this is decidedly an R-rated read, and this sci-fi read reminded me of Firefly, specifically the character Inara, the high-end space escort, if you will, that flies with the crew. From the very beginning, you’re met with a higher level of spice than a typical romance, with a very public display between multiple partners — letting the reader know this is an intense ride that never really lets up. The female main character, Mara Leanor, is a highly coveted seductress who routinely reminds herself not to let her emotions impact her feelings. She’s keenly aware of the power she holds over everyone around her, and that her strength comes from an unabashed sexuality and beauty. Mara is the last of her kind; her people were essentially destroyed when she was a child, and she has hoped for years to return to her home planet. When given the opportunity by her powerful lover, he instructs her to remain close to Cal, because the world she remembers is not the same now. He also tells her that when she needs a "release," she can turn to the bodyguard. Except Cal is from the same country responsible for the destruction of Mara’s, so she should despise him, but the cunning, handsome, and sexually competent Cal isn't easy to hate. And for Cal, Mara shouldn't be anything more than a distraction. He has one chance to return to his own country, except he finds himself falling for Mara, who uses him for her own enjoyment while giving none of herself emotionally to him. Revolts and political unrest threaten the world around them, and Cal and Mara eventually have to decide if their present matters more than her past and his future. Get it from Bookshop here!