This year has flown by so quickly for me, despite spending a good 5 months in hard lockdown. Thankfully it meant that I had a lot of time to read (and I actually did use the time to read, unlike last year). This year, I also managed to complete my Goodreads goal of 100 books and it was mostly due to my newfound interest in contemporary romance novels! Unsurprisingly, romance reads make up most of my favourites list this year…
Battle Royal by Lucy Parker
Battle Royal is without a doubt my absolute favourite book of the year. To me, it’s the perfect novel. It’s got some wonderful characters, a grumpy x sunshine romance and LOTS OF CAKE. I also really loved Lucy Parker’s other books (the London Celebrities series) and a lot of them would have made it into my top 10 but I thought I’d try to switch things up a bit!
The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas
If you love the enemies-to-lovers trope, you’ll love The Spanish Love Deception. The slow burn romance is to die for and Aaron will forever have my heart! The novel definitely has similar vibes to The Hating Game by Sally Thorne, so if you enjoyed that one, you’ll probably enjoy this one too.
A Pho Love Story by Loan Le
I’ve talked about A Pho Love Story ad nauseum this year so I’ll spare you. It’s just a beautifully written YA novel with Asian-American main characters who I can 100% relate to. Not to mention all of the food references will have you salivating like crazy.
The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren
I’ve read and enjoyed a lot of Christina Lauren novels but I think The Unhoneymooners might be my favourite of them all (besides maybe Love and Other Words, which I also feature on this list). The Unhoneymooners is fun and quirky, and has my favourite enemies-to-lovers trope along with fake romance. It’s got everything you would want from a comedic romance story.
Beach Read by Emily Henry
It took me a while to pick up Beach Read because my only other experience with an Emily Henry book was her debut The Love that Split the World, which I really did not like. But I absolutely loved the concept of Beach Read and was a huge fan of both main characters who are authors. I enjoyed how their relationship grew and the way that the more sensitive topics were handled.
Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren
There’s honestly nothing I love more than a second chance romance and this was probably one of the best ones I’ve read this year. I absolutely loved the alternating chapters of then and now, and being able to follow Macy and Elliot’s relationship throughout the years. It’s not a light-hearted novel but it’s one that touched me and left me simultaneously feeling like I wanted to reread it and also never wanting to read it again because of all the feels.
Accidentally Engaged by Farah Heron
I absolutely loved how much fun Accidentally Engaged was to read. If you love cooking and baking, with a sprinkle of fake romance and friends-to-more, you’ll absolutely love it too. I really connected with the two main characters and thought Nadim was super duper dreamy.
The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood
The Love Hypothesis has received a lot of hype this year but I couldn’t not include in on the list given that it’s set within academia. There were so many aspects that I connected with, having done a STEM PhD myself. I loved the fake romance between Olive and Adam and really could not help falling in love with both of them.
Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare
It will come as no surprise to any of you that Chain of Iron is on my favourites list. I’m truly gutted that the final book of the trilogy has been delayed until November 2022 because I love the characters so much. And I’m sure it’ll make an appearance on my favourites for next year!
The Road Trip by Beth O’Leary
I contemplated for a long time which book would round out this list of favourites. Although The Road Trip wasn’t a perfect 5-star read for me, I did find myself coming back to the ending over and over again. I think I’ve probably listened to the last 45 minutes of the audiobook about 4 or 5 times this year so it definitely deserves to be in my top 10 for the year.
I’d love to hear all about your favourites, especially since most of the books I read this year fell within the same genre!! Let me know your favourites down in the comments below.
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