Favorite Romance Books of 2018

2018 was a fantastic reading year for me. Phenomenal really! There were so many amazing books I had the opportunity to read and narrowing down my Favorite Romance Books was incredible hard. Of course I had to add a few more so there are some honorable mentions that I’m sharing as well. These books made me laugh and cry, filled me up and left me smiling, they were filled with amazing and heartfelt characters that I really connected with. I love when I’m reading and a story really makes me feel all the emotion the characters are going through, each and everyone of these did that for me. I felt it all! These books gave me a book hangover for days and really stuck with me and I cannot begin to say enough good things about each and every one of them.

Favorite Romance Books of 2018 | About That Story

Favorite Romance Books of 2018

There’s a first time for everything, I had four 6 STAR READS in 2018. The type of books that I was so lost in, so consumed by, that I’m pretty sure I forgot to cook dinner a time or two (or five!). They were the best of the best of the best and they touched me deeply.

Getting Schooled

Getting Schooled (Getting Some #1) by Emma Chase

Amazon | My Review

This! This right here is my kind of read. A story that really makes me feel. Getting Schooled made me laugh (hysterically so!), it made me cry, it filled me up, and left me feeling unbelievably happy. I swear this is one of the most entertaining books I've ever read. It was filled with love, heart, humor, and hope. And Garrett! Oh my! He’s book boyfriend material for sure!!! This was perfect to me! 6 stars! 

Fun Fact: This is not Emma Chase’s first time on my favorite reads list. To say I’m a fan is an understatement. Tangled was on my Top Reads of 2013 list and Sustained, the second book in the Legal Briefs series, made my Top Reads of 2015 list. Royally Screwed, made my Top Reads of 2016 list, as well as the Appealed and Sidebarred. Royally Matched was on my Favorite Reads of 2017 list and Royally Endowed got an Honorable Mention.

Josh and Hazels Guide to Not Dating

Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren

Amazon | My Review

This was just THE BEST! 6 stars! From start to finish I was in love with Josh and Hazel, laughing my way through the chaos and adventure, and rooting for them to get to their HEA. Hazel is one of the most refreshing, quirky, and lovable character ever and I have a serious girl crush on her! There’s something incredibly special about this story. Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating is in a league of it’s own and it’s one of my FAVORITE things Christina Lauren has written. It was fantastic and I enjoyed every second!

Fun Fact: In case you didn’t know, Christina Lauren is a writing duo and they are AMAZEBALLS! If they write it, I will read it. There first book in the Beautiful Bastard series, Beautiful Bastard, made my Top Reads of 2013 list. Dirty Rowdy Thing, the second book in the Wild Seasons series, made my Top Reads of 2014 list and Sweet Filthy Boy got an Honorable Mention. Beautiful Secret made my Top Reads of 2015 list and Dark Wild Night got an Honorable Mention. But wait! There’s more! Beautiful, the final book in the Beautiful Bastard series, was on my Top Reads of 2016 list. That’s a lot of CLo love!!!

Bad For You

Bad For You (Dirty Deeds #3) by J. Daniels

Amazon | My Review

There are some stories you feel deep. When you don't pay attention to the Kindle percentage or the time left in the chapter. The words just flow and you absorb them like you're right there, and you're feeling it all. That's what this story did for me. Bad for You was an incredible read that broke me a bit and built me back up. I loved Sean and Shayla’s beautiful friendship and building relationship. It was such a wonderful story of hope and healing and it gets all the stars!

Fun Fact: Four Letter Word, the first book in the Dirty Deeds series, was on my Top Reads of 2016. J. Daniels is a phenomenal storyteller that you have to really experience. Go forth and read!

Professor Feelgood

Professor Feelgood (Masters of Love #2) by Leisa Rayven

Amazon | My Review

This was so amazing. AMAZING. 6 stars! Heartfelt, raw and real. A beautifully written and well executed story. It feels like I went on an incredible journey and felt every single bit of emotion the characters went through. Absolutely brilliant. I don’t think there’s one thing Leisa Rayven has written that I haven’t loved, that hasn’t affected me in a profound way. I love being able to put my heart in the author’s hands and just trust where it’s all going to go. This was just so much more than I thought it was going to be. It was an absolutely beautiful story that I can’t begin to say enough good things about.

Fun Fact: Leisa Rayven has made my Favorite Romance Books list 5 years in a row! Her book Bad Romeo made my Top Reads of 2014 list, Broken Juliet made my Top Reads of 2015 list, and Wicked Heart made my Top Reads of 2016 list. That’s all three books from the Star Crossed series! Mister Romance, the first book in the Masters of Love series, made my Favorite Romance Reads of 2017 list and now here we are again. Yay!

Who loves an EPIC ROMANCE? I know I do! A story that really builds and builds and keeps you on the edge of your seat with all the emotion and swoons. I thought the following two reads were epic for sure!

Royally Yours

Royally Yours (Royally #4) by Emma Chase

Amazon | My Review

What an absolutely epic, beautiful love story. My heart feels so full! I adored every single thing about this, every detail and connection. It was filled with a wonderful mix of humor, emotion, and love, and it was brilliantly executed. This was such a heartfelt story, I was either smiling from the wonderful humor or trying not to cry from all the amazing moments that take place. There are heartbreaking moments and entertaining ones. There is passion and heat and so much love. This had everything I could have wanted and so much more. Amazing read!

Fun Fact: Your eyes do not deceive you. Emma Chase is indeed on my Favorite Romances Books of 2018 list two times! Every book in her Royally series has made an appearance on my Top Reads and Favorites list in one form or another over the years. I think saying I highly recommended it is a given. ;-)

Wild Like the Wind

Wild Like the Wind (Chaos #5) by Kristen Ashley

Amazon | My Review

Amazing! Everything about this was phenomenal. The intensity, the drama, the heat, love, the healing, the brotherhood and family. Every detail pulled me in and consumed me. I don't know if I can convey everything I feel after reading this. There were so many layers and so much depth. The writing was stellar. It flowed beautifully, pulling me in, captivating me. There's something amazing when the world around you truly fades away and you loose yourself into a whole other world. I loved it all!

Fun Fact: Kristen Ashley is one of my all time favorite storytellers. I own a lot of her work on multiple platforms (paperback, Kindle, and audio). I can’t get enough! The Gamble was on my Top Reads of 2014 list as an Honorable Mention. The third book in the Chaos series, Ride Steady , as well as the fourth book, Walk Through Fire where both on my Top Reads of 2015 list and At Peace was on Honorable Mention on my Top Reads of 2016 list. She’s got a pretty big back list and I’ve read a lot but still have so many more to go. Thank goodness! The day I get caught up with KA will be a sad day indeed, lol!

If you love ANIMOSITY between characters then look no further. Hate-flirt is my kryptonite and I can’t get enough of it. A story that brings the tension and combustible heat is my favorite!

Fight or Flight

Fight or Flight by Samantha Young

Amazon | My Review

Fight or Flight was a brilliantly executed story that was filled with so much passion and emotion, I honestly couldn't put it down. I was mesmerized by the intriguing and complicated characters. It was crazy and intense in the beginning with their hate-lust attraction but it completely drew me in with this antagonistic banter and I wanted to know why they were the way they were. The push and pull Caleb and Ava had between them was tense and hot all rolled into one. This book honestly consumed me and almost felt like an indulgence. I was so caught up in Caleb and Ava's relationship, hooked on the drama, emotion, and passion. I couldn't get enough. Loved every second!

Fun Fact: I really need to read more Samantha Young. She’s such an amazing writer. Her book Hero made my Top Reads of 2015 list and On Dublin Street got an Honorable Mention the same year. The One Real Thing got an Honorable Mention on my Favorite Romance Reads of 2017 list.

What is it about a SMALL TOWN ROMANCE that leaves me smiling big time because they’re so sweet and perfect? The following two books made me ridiculously happy and were a joy to read.

Then There Was You

Then There Was You (Angel Falls #1) by Miranda Liasson

Amazon | My Review

I absolutely adored this. It was a wonderful story filled with so much heart and love that completely filled me up. It had such a great pace giving me just what I needed at just the right time. This was sweet and loving and funny and just full of so much heart. This was so much more than this budding relationship between Colton and Sara. It's about family, friendships, and really connecting and opening up. There were so many amazing details making this one extraordinary story. I am so glad the adorable cover caught my eye and I decided to try a new-to-me author. This was just what I needed and I enjoyed every second!

Fun Fact: Miranda Liasson is a new-to-me author and I’m so glad I found her. That cover totally did it for me and then the story…. so wonderful!

The Clover Chapel

The Clover Chapel (Jamison Valley #2) by Denvey Perry

Amazon | My Review

This was so incredibly fantastic! Right from the start, I didn't want to put it down and needed to know what would happen next and that feeling stuck with me the entire time. I was so pulled into this wonderful, rich world and I loved it all. I love that there was so much healing and hope happening in the story as well as forgiveness. It was an amazing second chance romance. I was so excited the entire time I was reading and pretty much hid from my family so I could absorb every detail.

Fun Fact: The first book in the Jamison Valley series, The Coppersmith Farmhouse, made my Favorite Romance Reads of 2017 list. I’m slowly but surely making my way through the series and it’s phenomenal!

The perfect combination of SWEET AND HEAT! These stories made me laugh and swoon, and packed a series emotional punch! I couldn’t get enough!


Brooklynaire (Brooklyn Bruisers #4) by Sarina Bowen

Amazon | My Review

From start to finish and with every little detail in between I was in love with Nate and Rebecca and and their story. I really enjoyed their playfulness and internal dialogue as well. I can't even begin to tell you how many times I laughed out loud. They had this amazing friendship that grew and grew into so much more and it was a wonderful ride. Absolutely fantastic. I think this is Sarina Bowen’s best work to date!

Fun Fact: Sarina Bowen made my Favorite Romance Reads of 2017 list twice for both Pipe Dreams, book three in the Brooklyn Bruisers series and Bountiful, book four in the True North series. Steadfast, book two in the True North series, made my Top Reads of 2016 list.

The Heartless Boyfriend

The Heartless Boyfriend (Bad Boyfriend #2) by Erika Kelly

Amazon | My Review

I loved every single thing about this! The Heartless Boyfriend was an excellent story that was extremely entertaining and sweet with amazing characters that packed a serious emotional punch. It was truly fantastic and I didn't want to put it down! This was a seriously awesome, entertaining read with amazing characters that pulled at my heartstrings! If you've not read Erika Kelly before, I highly recommend her!

Fun Fact: I Want You to Want Me, the second book in Erika Kelly’s Rock Star Romance series, made my Top Reads of 2015 list. More Than a Feeling, the fourth book in the same series, made my Favorite Reads list of 2017.

Who isn’t a fan of an awesome BEACH READ! To me, a beach read is a page-turner of a story that I never want to put down because I’m having so much fun reading it. It an entertaining read that fills me up, makes me ridiculously happy, and leaves me smiling! Needless to say, this one fits the bill!

I Flipping Love You

I Flipping Love You by Helena Hunting

Amazon | My Review

Talk about the perfect beach read! I adored this. It had everything I love in a story. Rian and Pierce had such a fantastic relationship. I loved their verbal sparring, the building sexual tension, and the animosity between the two. It was just so freaking entertaining, I couldn't get enough! Light and fun with great characters that had me laughing out loud and cheering. This was an absolute joy to read!

Fun Fact: Clipped Wings, the first book in the Inked Armor series made my Top Reads of 2014 list. Hooking Up was an Honorable Mention on my Favorite Reads of 2017 list. These books aren’t listed as part of a series but are in the same world and not to be missed.

Who doesn’t love a bad guy? Bring on the ANTI-HERO!!! There is something about a broody man with attitude and layers that I love. This one was perfect!

The Bastards Bargain

The Bastard’s Bargain (The O’Malleys #6) by Katee Robert

Amazon | My Review

I am thrilled with how this story played out and loved every second. It's a complicated world full of so many different dynamics and layers, I could not get enough. I loved Dmitri and Keira! They had an intense and volatile relationship and as soon as I picked it up, I was gone to this world the author has created. There's a lot of tension and simmering passion between them and I could feel that push and pull. I loved their verbal sparring, some snarky, some sweet, but the more they come together the more playful it gets and it made them really entertaining together. And the passion? Holy heck this sucker was hot. Each book has had me hooked every time but this one, hands down, is my absolute favorite. A must read!

Fun Fact: I can’t believe this is the first time Katee Robert has made my list. The O’Malleys series is freaking fantastic! It’s a complex world full of intense and interesting characters. Hot mob guys for the win!

Looking for a BINGE READ? I’ve got the perfect book for you! Well, technically it’s three books set in the same world and I read them all in a row and they consumed me! I picked my favorite of the bunch to share.

A Nordic King

The Nordic King by Karina Halle

Amazon | My Review

I loved every single thing about this story! It had such an amazing build, keeping me turning the page, wanting my HEA… it was amazing! I felt like I was on the edge of my seat the entire time as I learned everything. I was so in love with Aksel in Aurora, I never wanted it to end! Every detail, every character, and every scene was just so well thought out and well written. I love a story that really makes me feel and this one definitely did.

Fun Fact: I haven’t binge read in years but once I picked up The Swedish Prince, I knew I had to read them all. After that was The Wild Heir and then I immediately dove into A Nordic King. Technically they aren’t listed in a series but they’re all set in the same world with interconnecting characters so to me, they’re in a series. This was my first time reading Karina Halle and her work consumed me. I’m totally kicking myself for not reading her sooner.

If you need to get your laugh on, I’ve got a book full of HILARIOIUS ANTICS for you! The entire series is laugh-out-loud funny actually. Prepare to wipe the tears from your eyes as you read this one!

In Bed with the Beast

In Bed with the Beast (Naughty Princess Club #2) by Tara Sivec

Amazon | My Review

This was a freaking delight! I am so happy. Talk about a story that had me giggling and smiling the entire time. This was it! I loved Belle and the Beast! This was a seriously entertaining read I couldn't get through fast enough. Fun. Sweet. Sexy. Witty. Playful. Laugh out loud funny. I don't think I have enough adjectives to describe how wonderful this was. Honestly thought, the take away is it was pure fun. A light, entertaining read that made me laugh and had me cheering, with truly wonderful characters and a perfect HEA. It was awesome!

Fun Fact: This year was my first time reading Tara Sivec and after I read one book, I pretty much added her entire back list to my TBR. I can’t remember the last time I laughed so much while reading. This entire series is AMAZEBALLS! I loved them all but In Bed With the Beast was my favorite. The first book in the Naughty Princess Club, At the Stroke of Midnight, and the third book, Kiss the Girl are equally awesome and hilarious.

But wait, there’s more!!! It happens every year, I pick my favorite books to feature but there are always a few more that really get under my skin and stick with me. These awesome reads get the title of HONORABLE MENTION. These next books deserve an extra special shout out because I loved them hard!

Fighting for Everything

Fighting for Everything (Warrior Fight Club #1) by Laura Kaye

Amazon | My Review

Fighting for Everything was such an emotional and heartfelt ride. I was immediately invested in the characters from the beginning and couldn't wait for them to get their HEA. Such a wonderful story!

Rock Chick Revolution

Rock Chick Revolution (Rock Chick #8) by Kristen Ashley

Amazon | My Review

I wish I had the words to convey how much I loved this so I'm going to borrow one from Ally and go with RIGHTEOUS! Seriously! This story, so freaking amazing.It was everything!


Chaser (Dive Bar #3) by Kylie Scott

Amazon | My Review

This was brilliant! Kylie Scott rocks the male POV! I thought Eric had the best voice, I couldn’t get enough! Page after page I was smiling and feeling emotional all rolled into one. This was so sweet, funny, and charming. My absolute favorite in the series!

Marriage of Inconvenience

Marriage of Inconvenience (Knitting in the City #7) by Penny Reid

Amazon | My Review

Wow. Just wow. Penny Reid is truly and incredible storyteller. I loved, loved, loved Kat and Dan’s story. This was an absolute joy to read, incredibly entertaining and detailed and full of so much heart! It was excellent!

Moonlight Sins

Moonlight Sins (de Vincent #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Amazon | My Review

This was a spectacular read with twists and turns around every corner that had me holding my breath. It was an exciting web full of secrets and passion! The attention to detail was phenomenal. I thought Moonlight Sins was extraordinary!


Paperback Giveaway | About That Story

Who wants to win a paperback of The Bastard’s Bargain by Katee Robert, Then There Was You by Miranda Liasson, and Bad For You by J. Daniels compliments of Forever Romance? Just fill out the Rafflecopter below to enter.

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The nitty gritty details: One winner. US residents only. Prize will be sent directly from the awesome powers that be at Forever Romance. Ends 1/19/2019 at 12am CST.


Did you make it clear down here? Whew! This was a heck of a post huh? I hope you enjoyed it and found some new books to add to your TBR (to-be-read) list. My list is never ending but it doesn’t stop me from adding more.

I just wanted to take a moment and say THANK YOU! Thank you to my blog readers and to those that follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Goodreads. Thank you to those that comment and chat with me. Thank you to the friends I’ve made thanks to our mutual love of books. Thank you to the publishing houses and authors for the advanced reader copies and paperbacks I receive. Thank you to the publicists for all you do. Thank you to this amazing book loving and blogging community. You are my people and I love you.

And a big thank you goes out to books. Just books. For taking me away to another world, having me live another life and experience so much through the written word. I’d be lost without you.

All the best! Have a fabulous 2019!


Gretchen (the one woman show behind About That Story!)

p. s. My book photoshoot got a bit out of hand. Just for fun, I’m sharing some of my favorite shots... because my post isn’t apparently long enough yet. :-)

Favorite Romance Books of 2018 | About That StoryFavorite Romance Books of 2018 | About That StoryFavorite Romance Books of 2018 | About That StoryFavorite Romance Books of 2018 | About That Story

What were some of your favorite reads in 2018? What books are you looking forward to in 2019? My to-read list can never be big enough, let me know!

Favorite Romance Books of 2018 | About That Story


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