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Beating Heart Books: Our Favorite Romance Novels of All Time

 

Sometimes we all need a little spark of romance to ignite the warmth in our hearts, and in times when the world outside can seem a little off-kilter, there’s nothing like a good solid romance to send a tingle up your spine. From flirty summer fun to tragic tales of unrequited love, here are our favorite page-turners to keep you warm at night. PS we promise The Notebook isn’t on our list.

 

Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte

Set in the drizzly dark and dreamily foreboding landscape of England’s moors, Wuthering Heights may not be the picture-perfect love story, but it knows how to serve up passionate obsession in style. Telling the tragic yet tantalizing tale of Catherine Earnshaw and Heathcliff, the story follows the tangled pair from childhood into the complexities of adulthood. While the fire is strong, it’s also a reminder that love can be a cruel and terrible thing.

 

The Time Travelers Wife – Audrey Niffenegger

 

Henry is a time travelling librarian who has a rare condition that pulls his body back and forth through time, resetting his clock without his control. He first meets Claire when she is six and he was 36, they married when she was 22 and he was 30. Time tears them apart and pieces them back together and it’s a true testament to the power of love. This one will make you equal measures warm and weepy.

 

Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen

Elizabeth Bennet is one of the most delightful heroines in 19th-century literature you could ever hope for. Far from being a wallflower, she is strong-willed, opinionated, and ever ready to bring that dashing Mr Darcy down a peg or two. Following their clashes becomes an absolute joy to behold and who doesn’t love to lose themselves in the aristocratic manners and mayhem of English manor house life.

 

Call Me By Your Name – Andre Aciman

 

Sizzling Italian summers, young love, and a scene that will make you never look at a peach in the same way again, Call Me By Your Name is the ultimate sunny day plunge into those rare and raunchy summers. Elio falls hard for his parent's friend who comes to visit their Italian villa for the summer and thus the next few weeks become a tapestry of bicycle rides, confusing courtship, and that churning burning feeling that always accompanies a first love.

 

Love in the Time of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Served with more than a pinch of magic realism, Gabriel Garcia Marquez serves up a luscious tale of teenage romance that lingers. Florentino and Fermina fall madly in love in their younger years but are separated by Fermina’s father. Fermina marries and there’s a whole incident with a parrot and a death before the two are thrown back together to explore what it means when you pick up the gauntlet of love a little later than expected.

Which romance novels do you turn to when you need your fix? Share your faves in the comments.

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