Not Your Granny’s Bodice Rippers! New Trends in Contemporary Romance Covers.

One of the many brilliant things about audiobooks is that you can listen to something without everyone knowing what you’re listening to. This is especially useful if you like to tell people that you only listen to business books, when you actually mostly listen to romantica. (Come on, we all do it).

I personally read and listen to lots of books in all different genres. For example, in the last couple of months I’ve listened to After by Anna Todd, Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens, and Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach. But sometimes you can feel a little self-conscious if you’re on the bus reading a bodice-ripper, or the latest true crime with a gruesome cover, particularly if there are small children around. Plus, if you’re trying to zone out on your commute, people are less likely to start the “Whatcha reading?” conversation with you if you have your headphones on. (Introverts unite!).

That’s not to say that covers are not important, even for audiobooks. When searching for new listens on Audiobooks.com, it’s true to say that most of us are attracted to awesome summaries and beautiful covers. And here at Audiobooks.com we’ve certainly noticed a trend in super-cute romance covers that are definitely not your grandma’s bodice rippers or aga sagas. So whether you embrace your love for steamy romance, or want to hide your phone app far, far, away, we have some sexy, romantic, and fun listens for you, with some cute covers to boot!

 

Meet Cute by Helena Hunting, narrated by Teddy Hamilton, Holly Warren 

Imagine finally meeting your celebrity crush! Now imagine that you meet your celebrity crush by accidentally tripping over and falling on him. CRINGE.

Kailyn, a law student meets Daxton, an TV star-turned-law student, and after this embarrassing encounter they become fast friends…until a betrayal causes an abrupt end to their relationship.

Eight years later, Daxton is back in Kailyn’s life, and needs her help. Will they be able to get past their issues to work together…and maybe more?

Read more and sample the audio →

 

Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey, narrated by Charlotte North

Georgette’s family has a successful renovation business, but instead of doing that for a living, Georgie is *literally* a clown. She loves her job entertaining kids, but since “no one will date the clown” she decides to give herself a bit of a makeover.

Combine this with a flirtation with an ex-baseball player, and you’ve got a fun and adorable listen that will make you swoon!

Read more and sample the audio →

 

The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai, narrated by Summer Morton, Brian Pallino

Alisha Rai brings us The Right Swipe – a modern romance story for the Tinder generation.

Rhiannon Hunter is driven and strong in her career as a dating app creator, and uses the same cut-throat techniques for her dating life. However, things change when she meets Samson, who breaks her heart, and disappears. Will she give him a second chance?

This romance novel is part of Rai ‘s modern love series, and features strong women, diverse characters, and feminist themes. This is as much a book about a successful woman, as it is about romance.

Read more and sample the audio →

 

If We’re not Married by Thirty by Anna Bell, narrated by Rebecca Courtney 

Are you one of those people who made a deal with a friend (jokingly, of course) that if you weren’t married by a certain age, you’d marry them? In this cute story, Lydia is thirty and single. On vacation, she bumps into her childhood friend, who she’s always had a crush on, and they soon enter into a passionate holiday romance. Years ago they made a pact that if they were still single when they turned thirty they would get married. But no one really follows through on these pacts . . . right? Could Lydia’s back-up really be the one?

Read more and sample the audio →

 

Red, White and Royal Blue By Casey Mcquiston, narrated by Ramon De Ocampo 

I love romance novels, and I LOVE the Royal family, so I was drawn, not just to the beautiful and fun cover, but also to the cute and fun subject matter, and the fact it’s a LGBTQ+ read.

The US President’s son, Alex, has a fun and exciting “job” as an international socialite and “millennial ambassador.” However, one less than fun element of the job is having to maintain a fake friendship with his long-term nemesis – and member of the British royal family – Prince Henry.

However, the more time they spend together, the more Alex realizes that Henry isn’t as bad as he originally thought, and soon enough they find themselves hurtling into a secret romance that could derail Alex’s mom’s re-election campaign, and upend two nations!

Read more and sample the audio →

 

The Bride Test by Helen Hoang, narrated by Emily Woo Zeller

This is not the first time I’ve raved about Helen Hoang. She creates such great and believable neurodiverse characters.

Following the amazing (and also cute-covered) Kiss Quotient, The Bride Test follows Khai, (Quan’s brother in The Kiss Quotient), who has autism, and steadfastly avoids relationships. His very traditional mother is desperate for him to get married, so she takes matters into her own hands, and goes to Vietnam to get him a bride.

Esme Tran has always felt out of place. When she gets a chance to come to America and meet a potential husband, she can’t turn it down. But seducing Khai is not as easy as she thought it would be….

Read more and sample the audio →

 

The Wedding Party by Jasmine Guillory, narrated by Janina Edwards 

You know a book is good when Reese Witherspoon picks it for her book club. Carrying on from The Wedding Date and The Proposal (A Hello Sunshine Pick!), The Wedding Party centers in on Maddie and Theo who are arch enemies with two things in common: 1) Alexa is their best friend, and 2) they hate each other.

However, after an “Oops! We made a mistake!” night together, they can’t stop thinking about each other. Helping plan Alexa’s wedding means they have to spend a LOT of time together, which causes tension…and passion.

Read more and sample the audio →

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BACKLIST BUMP: The Book of M by Peng Shepherd

Title: The Book of M
Author: Peng Shepherd
Narrators: Emily Woo ZellerJames Fouhey

Every year, twice a year, everyone and everything between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn loses their shadows. For a few brief moments, the sun shines directly overhead in that area, and everyone’s shadows shrink ever and ever smaller until they magically disappear. The shadows always return, of course, after which everyone goes about their lives. Until, one day, in a marketplace in India, a man named Hemu Joshi inexplicably loses his shadow forever.

He becomes a global sensation, strutting about without his dark companion. Doctors and scientists are baffled; news outlets are enraptured. It seems like a miracle until Hemu begins to lose his memories—and then, as the consequences of his memory loss become apparent, horror ensues. Before long, others begin to lose their shadows, forgetting themselves and their realities, collapsing the world as we know it. And so, the story begins.

In the aftermath of the Forgetting, Orlando “Ory” Zhang and his wife Max have taken refuge in the hotel they had been staying in for a wedding when the Forgetting reached the United States. When Max loses her shadow, she quietly slips away while Ory is out scavenging to spare him the pain and anguish that will inevitably follow.

The story unfolds as Ory embarks on a desperate journey across an unrecognizable United States to find Max before she forgets completely. The opening chapter is a powerful emotional hook, compelling and tender with just the right amount of exposition—by far one of the best I’ve had the pleasure of listening to.

The Book of M straddles the line between science fiction and romance, and Peng Shepherd is an expert at threading tender, human connections through a world that is wholly new, disturbing, and at times nonsensical. As the inescapable shadowless disease spreads and reality becomes unhinged, listeners are anchored by Ory and Max’s bond, which is a steadfast, comforting force that propels the story through strange and frightening terrain.

James Fouhey is a transformative narrator, bringing to life three out of four characters through whom the story is told: Ory Zhang; Mahnaz Ahmadi, an Iranian athlete training in the USA; and The One Who Gathers, a mysterious individual with a unique understanding of memory. Rounding out the cast is Emily Woo Zeller as Max, whose poignant, heartbreaking performance is an absolute standout.

Clocking in at just over 17 hours, The Book of M isn’t exactly a short listen, but Shepherd makes every second of it necessary and meaningful. With plenty of post-apocalyptic intrigue and lyrical prose, Shepherd’s stunning dystopian debut manages to be innovative and extraordinary in a genre that is inundated with repetitive stories. Capped off with an ending that will pull the rug out from under your feet, The Book of M is a novel that you’ll want to treasure in your memory for a very long time.

Publisher’s Summary:

One afternoon at an outdoor market in India, a man’s shadow disappears—an occurrence science cannot explain. He is only the first. The phenomenon spreads like a plague, and while those afflicted gain a strange new power, it comes at a horrible price: the loss of all their memories.

Ory and his wife Max have escaped the Forgetting so far by hiding in an abandoned hotel deep in the woods. Their new life feels almost normal, until one day Max’s shadow disappears too.

Knowing that the more she forgets, the more dangerous she will become to Ory, Max runs away. But Ory refuses to give up the time they have left together. Desperate to find Max before her memory disappears completely, he follows her trail across a perilous, unrecognizable world, braving the threat of roaming bandits, the call to a new war being waged on the ruins of the capital, and the rise of a sinister cult that worships the shadowless.

As they journey, each searches for answers: for Ory, about love, about survival, about hope; and for Max, about a new force growing in the south that may hold the cure.

Like The Passage and Station Eleven, this haunting, thought-provoking, and beautiful novel explores fundamental questions of memory, connection, and what it means to be human in a world turned upside down.

Read more and sample the audio →

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The King’s (and Queen’s!) Speech: A Majesty of Narrators!

If you’re a fan of British royal family-themed fiction, then almost certainly you’re a fan of two things: The Crown on Netflix, and Philippa Gregory. Out now is a new audio version of The Queen’s Fool, narrated by Yolanda Kettle, which follows The Other Boleyn Girl, narrated by Vanessa Kirby. Both Kettle and Kirby have been *spoiler alert* recent love rivals in The Crown, which got us to thinking, which other books have been narrated by The Crown stars? Let’s take a look!

The Queen’s Fool by Philippa Gregory, narrated by Yolanda Kettle

Philippa Gregory does it again!

Hannah Green is a young girl who is placed in the Tudor court as a holy fool to Mary I. Hannah, who has many of her own secrets, ends up trapped between the Catholic Queen and Elizabeth, her Protestant sister. She must choose between living a safe life of a commoner or risking everything for the fame and fortune of the court.

Yolanda Kettle’s narration really brings Hannah’s character to life. She has a very youthful voice, which is very apt for the characters in this novel.

Publisher’s Summary:

Winter, 1553. Pursued by the Inquisition, Hannah Green, a fourteen-year-old Jewish girl, is forced to flee with her father from their home in Spain. But Hannah is no ordinary refugee; she has the gift of “Sight,” the ability to foresee the future, priceless in the troubled times of the Tudor court. Hannah is adopted by the glamorous Robert Dudley, the charismatic son of King Edward’s protector, who brings her to court as a “holy fool” for Queen Mary and, ultimately, Queen Elizabeth. Hired as a fool but working as a spy; promised in wedlock but in love with her master; endangered by the laws against heresy, treason, and witchcraft, Hannah must choose between the safe life of a commoner and the dangerous intrigues of the royal family that are inextricably bound up with her own yearnings and desires.

Teeming with vibrant period detail and peopled by characters seamlessly woven into the sweeping tapestry of history, The Queen’s Fool is a rich and emotionally resonant gem from a masterful storyteller.

Read more and sample the audio →

The Secretary by Renee Knight, narrated by Victoria Hamilton

Christine Butcher is a devoted and loyal secretary to Mina Appleton. She listens, watches, and is privy to secrets that she always keeps safe…

But those years of discretion come at a high price—which Christine discovers at her peril.

Victoria Hamilton’s (Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother) narration is perfect for this novel. Her calm voice adds an eerie and suspenseful tone to this thriller.

Publisher’s Summary:

From her first day as Personal Assistant to the celebrated Mina Appleton, Christine Butcher understands what is expected of her. Absolute loyalty. Absolute discretion. For twenty years, Christine has been a most devoted servant, a silent witness to everything in Mina’s life. So quiet, you would hardly know she is there.

Day after day, year after year, Christine has been there, invisible—watching, listening, absorbing all the secrets floating around her. Keeping them safe.
Christine is trusted. But those years of loyalty and discretion come with a high price. And eventually Christine will pay.

Yet, it would be a mistake to underestimate such a steadfast woman. Because as everyone is about to discover, there’s a dangerous line between obedience and obsession.

Read more and sample the audio →

Drama: An Actor’s Education by John Lithgow, narrated by John Lithgow

John Lithgow’s (Winston Churchill) memoir, which he narrates himself, is an absolute treat. He talks in depth about his life, his family, and his career, which has spanned decades and various genres. His stories about his parents are poignant and touching.

As I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, I love listening to authors narrating their own memoirs, since it adds real depth to the story being told. And of course, an actor with such gravitas as Lithgow brings much richness to the narration.

Publisher’s Summary:

Emmy Award-winner John Lithgow presents a charming, witty, and revealing memoir about his family, his work, and his life in Drama—an intimate story of insights and inspirational reflections from one of America’s most beloved actors. Lithgow pays tribute to his father, his greatest influence, and relives his collaborations with renowned performers and directors including Mike Nichols, Bob Fosse, Liv Ullmann, Meryl Streep, and Brian De Palma. A compelling reflection on the trials, triumphs, and changes across his long career, Lithgow’s Drama illuminates the inner life of a celebrated talent, and points the way forward for anyone aspiring to greatness in their own life.

Read more and sample the audio →

The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory, narrated by Vanessa Kirby

When Mary Boleyn comes to court, she falls in love with Henry VIII. However, she’s forced to step aside for her sister, Anne, when the King’s attention for Mary starts to wain.

As Mary realizes her family’s ambition is overriding her own needs and wants, she decides not to take it lying down…

Vanessa Kirby’s (Princess Margaret) regal narration style is so appropriate for this historical listen. The determination and strength of Mary’s character really come through in her reading.

Publisher’s Summary:

When Mary Boleyn comes to court as an innocent girl of fourteen, she catches the eye of the handsome and charming Henry VIII. Dazzled by the king, Mary falls in love with both her golden prince and her growing role as unofficial queen. However, she soon realizes just how much she is a pawn in her family’s ambitious plots as the king’s interest begins to wane, and soon she is forced to step aside for her best friend and rival: her sister, Anne. With her own destiny suddenly unknown, Mary realizes that she must defy her family and take fate into her own hands.

With more than one million copies in print and adapted for the big screen, The Other Boleyn Girl is a riveting historical drama. It brings to light a woman of extraordinary determination and desire who lived at the heart of the most exciting and glamorous court in Europe, and survived a treacherous political landscape by following her heart.

Read more and sample the audio →

Forever and a Day: A James Bond Novel by Anthony Horowitz, narrated by Matthew Goode

Anthony Horowitz, a famous and talented writer in his own right, has taken on the character of James Bond to create an amazing origin story, with all of the excitement, intrigue, and passion that we all expect from the world’s favorite spy.

Matthew Goode (Lord Snowdon) is every inch the right narrator for this book, bringing the suaveness needed for the James Bond character.

Publisher Summary

A spy is dead. A legend is born. This is how it all began. The explosive prequel to Casino Royale, from bestselling author Anthony Horowitz.

Forever and a Day is the story of the birth of a legend, in the brutal underworld of the French Riviera, taking readers into the very beginning of James Bond’s illustrious career and the formation of his identity.

***

M laid down his pipe and stared at it tetchily. “We have no choice. We’re just going to bring forward this other chap you’ve been preparing. But you didn’t tell me his name.”

“‘It’s Bond, sir,’” the Chief of Staff replied. “James Bond.”

The sea keeps its secrets. But not this time. 

One body. Three bullets. 007 floats in the waters of Marseille, killed by an unknown hand. 

It’s time for a new agent to step up. Time for a new weapon in the war against organized crime. 

It’s time for James Bond to earn his license to kill.

Read more and sample the audio →

Pet Sematary by Stephen King, narrated by Michael C. Hall

If you had to pick an author who really symbolizes everything great about the horror genre, most of us would pick Stephen King.

Pet Sematary is a horror classic, centered around the character Louis Creed, who moves his family to a lovely small town that seems too good to be true.

Michael C. Hall (John F. Kennedy) is very compelling and right on the money as narrator for this book. With his background in thrillers in TV shows like Dexter, he brings a great presence to this listen.

Publisher’s Summary:

When Dr. Louis Creed takes a new job, and moves his family to the idyllic, rural town of Ludlow, Maine, this new beginning seems too good to be true. Yet despite Ludlow’s tranquility, there’s an undercurrent of danger that lingers…like the graveyard in the woods near the Creed’s home, where generations of children have buried their beloved pets.

Behind the “pet sematary,” there is another burial ground, one that lures people to it with seductive promises…and ungodly temptations. A blood-chilling truth is hidden there—one more terrifying than death itself, and hideously more powerful. An ominous fate befalls anyone who dares tamper with this forbidden place, as Louis is about to discover for himself…

Read more and sample the audio →

New to Audiobooks.com? Get a free audiobook when you sign up for our one month free trial. Digital audiobooks make audible stories come to life when you’re commuting, working out, cleaning, cooking and more! Listening is easy with our top-rated free audiobook apps for iOS and Android, which let you download & listen to bestselling audiobooks on the go, wherever you are. Click here to get your free audiobook!

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Trend Alert: Finding Kindness Between the Pages with ‘UpLit’

I don’t know about you, but I feel like winter has been going on forever. I don’t remember what it feels like to not wear winter boots, shovel snow, or slip around on ice. While I’m lucky enough to live somewhere with lovely sunny (but cold) days in the winter, it’s still a season that gets a lot of people down. Add to that all of the economic and political uncertainty in the world, and sometimes you just need a bit of positivity! So why not combat that with some sunny and happy listens? Enter UpLit!

What is “UpLit”? UpLit is a term for novels that are inspiring and focus on empathy, human spirit, and friendship. They are very much set in the real world and may even deal with sad situations, but they have an element of optimism, and most importantly, they end on a high. If the book leaves you with a warm and fuzzy feeling after you read it, chances are you just read some UpLit.

Here are some of our top UpLit titles that we know you’ll love! For more suggestions, check out our book list!

Gone Viking by Helen Russell, narrated by Juliet Burton

Super organized but frazzled mum Alice likes to think she is always on top of everything, but is she really? After a fair amount of cajoling, she finally agrees to her sister Melissa’s advice to take a break.

Hoping her sister will book a fancy spa, Alice soon discovers that this is NOT what her sister has planned. She ends up in Denmark, at a “How to be a Viking” getaway.

As Alice learns to forage for food, takes up sword fighting, and builds boats, she also learns a lot about herself, her relationship with Melissa, and starts to realize that there are a lot of changes she needs to make in her life.

This is a fun and hilarious listen, definitely emphasized by Juliet Burton’s enthusiastic narration. It’s also a lovely story of a relationship between two very different sisters.

Publisher’s summary:

Frazzled mum Alice Ray likes to think she’s on top everything—she has FOUR bags-for-life in the boot of her car for heaven’s sake. But after spectacularly embarrassing herself at work, she finally gives in to her sister’s pleas to take a much-needed break.

But this is not the luxury spa holiday Alice hoped for—instead, she finds herself in Denmark, in the middle of nowhere, on a ‘How to be a Viking’ getaway.

Can the two sisters finally learn to get along or will learning to embrace their inner warrior just make them better at fighting? Two sisters. One Scandi holiday they’ll never forget…

Read more and sample the audio →

Just After Midnight by Catherine Ryan Hyde, narrated by Kate Rudd

If you like to listen to books that make you cry, you’ll love this. I was drawn to it because I love horses, and this is as much a story about horses as it is a story about friendship.

Both Sarah and Faith are escaping unhappy situations. When Faith is tasked with taking Sarah on a trip to help her recover from her mother’s death, Sarah begs her to take her to see Midnight, the horse that was once hers.

Together, the two women learn to come to terms with the people and situations that have damaged them.

Publisher’s Summary:

No longer tolerating her husband’s borderline abuse, Faith escapes to her parents’ California beach house to plan her next move. She never dreamed her new chapter would involve befriending Sarah, a fourteen-year-old on the run from her father and reeling from her mother’s sudden and suspicious death.

While Sarah’s grandmother scrambles to get custody, Faith is charged with spiriting the girl away on a journey that will restore her hope: Sarah implores Faith to take her to Falkner’s Midnight Sun, the prized black mare that her father sold out from under her. Sarah shares an unbreakable bond with Midnight and can’t bear to be apart from her. Throughout the sweltering summer, as they follow Midnight from show to show, Sarah comes to terms with what she witnessed on the terrible night her mother died.

But the journey is far from over. Faith must learn the value of trusting her instincts—and realize that the key to her future, and Sarah’s, is in her hands.

Read more and sample the audio →

The M Word by Eileen Wharton, narrated by Julia Franklin

Feel-good novels almost always seem to center around younger women, so it’s awesome to hear a story about a slightly older woman.

Roberta Gallbreath is middle-aged and menopausal. She hates a lot of people—mostly her kids, her ex-husband, and the majority of people she works with.

When her mother dies, Roberta reads some of her mother’s old letters and discovers information regarding her heritage. Based on this new information, Roberta decides that she needs to start becoming a better person.

This is a great self-discovery tale with a lot of humor! Julia Franklin adds so much character to Roberta and her family that you cannot help but laugh out loud!

Publisher’s Summary:

Roberta Gallbreath is middle-aged and menopausal. She dislikes her children, detests her ex-husband and despises her colleagues.

When her mother dies, Roberta is left with a pile of letters and a mystery surrounding her son. The letters reveal Roberta’s heritage is not what it seems and she is soon on a mission to become a better person.

Told with humour and emotion, this is the tale of one woman’s journey to find out where she came from. As she looks to the past for answers, more questions are raised. Will Roberta discover who she really is?

Read more and sample the audio →

I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella, narrated by Fiona Hardingham

I love, love, love, love, love Sophie Kinsella. I really do. I would say all of her books could be included in this blog post. She is the queen of UpLit! Two of my favourites are Remember Me? and My Not So Perfect Life, which both made me laugh out loud, and were a welcome breather from the two suspense listens that I had going on.

In I Owe You One, Fixie Farr, the aptly named main character, is that friend we all have who tries to fix other people’s problems. When she meets Sebastian in a coffee shop, he asks her to watch his laptop. She does so, and ends up saving it from disaster. To thank her, Seb scribbles an IOU on a business card, and thus begins a flurry of IOUs (and crazy situations) back and forth from Fixie to Seb, and vice versa.

The uplifting narration from long-term Kinsella narrator Fiona Hardingham is wonderful as always. She’s 100% the best narrator for an UpLit novel.

Publisher’s Summary:

Fixie Farr can’t help herself. Straightening a crooked object, removing a barely-there stain, helping out a friend…she just has to put things right. It’s how she got her nickname, after all.

So when a handsome stranger in a coffee shop asks her to watch his laptop for a moment, Fixie not only agrees, she ends up saving it from certain disaster. To thank her, the computer’s owner, Sebastian, scribbles her an IOU—but of course Fixie never intends to call in the favour.

That is, until her teenage crush, Ryan, comes back into her life and needs her help—and Fixie turns to Seb. But things don’t go according to plan, and now Fixie owes Seb: big time.

Soon the pair are caught up in a series of IOUs—from small favours to life-changing debts—and Fixie is torn between the past she’s used to and the future she deserves.

Does she have the courage to fix things for herself and fight for the life, and love, she really wants? 

Read more and sample the audio →

Dinner Party by Tracy Bloom, narrated by Juanita McMahon

When you have kids, you get into a routine, and oftentimes, it means you lose touch with friends. Sometimes because they are in different stages of life than you, other times it’s just exhaustion!

Beth, Sarah and Marie have busy lives, but make the effort to meet up once a month for a couples dinner. It’s always fun and laid back—until Simon, a last-minute guest, is invited to a dinner. As Simon becomes involved in the group, the relationships between the friends and their husbands start to unravel…

Publisher’s Summary:

Beth, Sarah and Marie have been friends forever. Now they are grown up, with busy lives, busy husbands, busy kids…but they still find time to meet up over dinner once a month. A cosy, comfortable gathering of happy couples—or so they thought.

Until one night, someone brings along a last-minute guest whose wife has just left him. Simon is standing on the doorstep in floods of tears. While the women do their best to console him, their husbands feel the need to mark their territory.

And as Simon becomes more involved with the group, his presence changes everything these three couples thought they knew about each other, leading to a final dinner party that no-one will ever forget. 

Read more and sample the audio →

New to Audiobooks.com? Get a free audiobook when you sign up for our one month free trial. Digital audiobooks make audible stories come to life when you’re commuting, working out, cleaning, cooking and more! Listening is easy with our top-rated free audiobook apps for iOS and Android, which let you download & listen to bestselling audiobooks on the go, wherever you are. Click here to get your free audiobook!

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Which Audiobook is Perfect for Your Valentine’s Day Plans?

Ah…Valentine’s Day. Some people love it, some people hate it. But there’s no denying that there are a LOT of books written about romance, and many people look for inspiration for their own love lives in the pages of a book.

Still wondering what to do for the day? Why not try our quiz, and get inspired to plan your day based on the book that’s right for you! And who knows? Maybe this will lead to the love of your life? Or at least a fun day, and a great listen.

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The Season of Love: Rom-Coms and the Newest Trend in Audiobooks

I love romantic comedy novels. Much like their movie counterparts, some people are snobby about them. But I love them. Why? Because they are comforting, and in a world that is always busy, and often scary, romantic comedies bring us escapism, passion, and most of all, a ton of fun!

Obviously, I’m not alone here. We at Audiobooks.com have noticed a surge in the number of rom-com titles, and no wonder! In 2018 we saw a big trend in movies and TV bringing back the rom-com in a big way (Crazy Rich Asians, Mamma Mia 2, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before), and so it makes complete sense we’d seeing this in the audiobook world too.

So sit back, get a bar of chocolate (or whatever your comfort food is), and stick on a few of these listens.

1. 99 Percent Mine by Sally Thorne, narrated by Jayme Mattler

In the same vein as her last book (The Hating Game), Sally Thorne brings us a fun romantic comedy about a twin sister and brother fighting over an inheritance, and the sexy best friend who comes between them. Darcy, the main character of the book, has a massive crush on her brother’s best friend—who has always been off limits for her…until now. Now tasked with renovating and selling her grandmother’s house, Darcy has to concentrate on figuring out how to protect her inheritance, while also trying to figure out how to seduce her brother’s best friend. 99 Percent Mine brings lots of laughs, and Jayme Mattler‘s narration really brings Darcy—and her feisty attitude—to life.

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2. The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May, narrated by Penny Scott Andrews

Have you ever felt like giving up everything, and moving to the middle of nowhere? Rosa Larkin, inherits a near-derelict shop in a quiet English village from an anonymous benefactor. She plans to sell it, but there’s a condition to ownership: she cannot sell the shop. So she either has to make a go of it, or give it away. So, Rosa decides to stay and run the shop, and much hilarity ensues! Add in a rugby player, a sexy plumber, and Rosa’s hilariously-named dachshund, Hot, and you’ve got a side-splitting combination!

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3. Accidental Tryst by Natasha Boyd, narrated by John Lane, Cassandra York

Did you love the movie You’ve Got Mail? If you did, or if you love a good opposites attract-type romance, you’ll love Accidental Tryst. Two strangers mistakenly switch phones at an airport. Trystan is a rich workaholic with an attitude. Emmy is a caring, sweet, free-spirited southern girl. On paper, it shouldn’t work…but it does! The fun and witty banter is intensified by John Lane and Cassandra York’s amazing narrations, which bring this novel to life.

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4. My Favorite Half-Night Stand by Christina Lauren, narrated by Shayna Thibodeaux and Deacon Lee

One of the great things about modern rom-com novels is the fact that the heroines are multifaceted characters. They have varied jobs and roles they fill and aren’t just two-dimensional traditional heroines. In this audiobook, Millie Morris is a professor who’s “perma-single.” She and her male best friends/colleagues make a pact to start online dating. However, straight after making the pact, Millie and her best friend, Reid, have a one night stand, which makes things awkward, so they agree to just stay friends.

After failing horribly at online dating, Millie decides to create a fake online account. Enter “Catherine,” Millie’s fictional persona, who…of course…gets matched with Reid…

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5. The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang, narrated by Carly Robins.

This is SUCH a cool listen. The heroine, Stella Lane, works in a well-paid, technical job, making algorithms that predict customer purchases. However, her social life is not as successful as her professional life. Helen finds it hard to be in relationships, which she attributes to being on the Austistic spectrum, as well as a lack of romantic experience. So she comes up with the idea of hiring an escort to get “experience with a professional.” This hilarious read can get pretty steamy, but it’s a great read from a unique perspective and a neurodiverse author.

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