"Enemies-to-Lovers" romances can be a bit hit-or-miss for me. Sometimes they have me wanting to fling the book across the room in frustration (well, mentally, at least... I'm not about to wreck my phone over a bad book!).
When I get a good one, though...
A good one will have me going from absolutely despising one (or both) of the main characters to loving them, from being completely unable to see how they could possibly end up together to being like, "Of course they belong together, duh." They make me believe.
That transformation from how-could-they-possibly to they-were-meant-for-each-other and all the electrifying tension in between— that's what we're here for, right?
The following are a handful of books that my romance-devouring coworkers and I have loved, books with that intoxicating hate/love mixture that gets under our skin. So get ready for heaps of drama, heated looks, and satisfyingly snarky banter— and be sure to check out the full list at the end!
The first book I have got to talk about is Hate to Want You— The emotion! The drama! The scorching heat of this book! Hate to Want You is just so deliciously angsty and yet, somehow, never overdone. It features Livvy and Nicholas, lovers long ago ripped apart by family tragedy and a shady business deal and reunited when Livvy comes home to care for her injured mother. You'll love it for the real, complex characters, the intense clashes that cut deep but never turn cruel, and the intoxicating, forbidden connection between these two lost souls. Overall it's an emotional, satisfying read! (also available in eBook)
With the possibility of a work promotion fueling their feud, Lucy and Josh will entertain you with silly games and sexy teasing in The Hating Game. Sally Thorne wrote an intoxicating slow burn leading up to that BOOM moment that comes with any great enemies-to-lovers romance— and the office setting just makes it all the better! Get ready for amusing dialogue, office pranks, and undeniable chemistry! (Also available in eBook)
Down by Contact (eBook)
Santino Hassell is 100% an auto-read for me; his books center on intense, gritty, passionate relationships between characters that feel so real. Plus, they are just hot, hot, hot! Not for the faint of heart. Steam for days. If that's not your thing you've been warned!
Down by Contact features Simeon and Adrián, once teammates and friends, now rivals who can't seem to stop getting into it over social media and on the football field. Forced proximity, two guys with an overabundance of charm, one cocky alpha-jerk, a bunch of mouthy teens, and tons of clashing wit— how can you go wrong?
Now don't let the title scare you— Wallbanger is just the nickname for the guy next door. Why? Well, you'll find out within the first chapter, and it's sure to make you laugh out loud. Plain and simple: this book is just FUN! The off-the-wall cat, the innuendos, the meddling friends, the kitchen escapades... Alice Clayton writes the heck out of a romantic comedy and Wallbanger will definitely put a smile on your face! (Also available in eBook)
An Unnatural Vice (eBook)
K. J. Charles has to be one of the best historical romance authors writing today. Her books are smart and well-researched but never fussy, and full of intrigue and scandal. And her characters! They're memorable and endearing, unique in ways that make them seem like they don't fit together.... Until Charles convinces you that they definitely, absolutely, 100% do fit in the most perfect of ways.
An Unnatural Vice is all of that packaged into an arresting tale set in the gritty streets of London and centered around Justin, a séance scam artist, and Nathaniel, the investigative journalist who's trying to take him down.