Celebrating Valentine’s Day with a fancy dinner date or weekend getaway may be off the cards this year, but we’re still in the mood for romance. In fact, we think this is the perfect time to remind ourselves of the power of love – and not just the conventional kind. So, we’ve rounded up the best romantic books to enjoy between those socially distanced dates in the park with your beau or galentine.
There’s nothing like a good old romance novel to warm even the iciest of hearts, and Jojo Moyes’ poignant tale with a twist is the perfect easy lockdown read. One of the most memorable love stories of the last decade, Me Before You (which was made into a hit film starring Emilia Clarke and Sam Claflin in 2016) follows the story of Lou and Will, an unconventional couple who meet in unusual circumstances.
Shortlisted for the Waterstones Book of the Year 2020, Bolu Babalola’s bestselling debut is as rich and alluring as a box of the finest Valentine’s Day confectionery. Love In Colour is an eclectic collection of romantic fables from history and mythology - think Nigerian goddesses and ancient Greek icons - beautifully reimagined by Babalola, a self-proclaimed ‘romcomoisseur’. Hopeless romantics, you’re in safe hands.
Heartwarming and humorous, the new book of poetry from Brian Bilston - aka ‘the poet laureate of Twitter’ - is a great companion to cuddle up to this Valentine’s Day. Treat yourself to an M&S Dine In deal and spend the evening devouring Bilston’s clever verses about love in all its glorious forms.
“I love you, I want you, it’s burning hell without you” writes renowned poet Dylan Thomas in one of the many letters penned to his wife Caitlin and the other women in his life (#player). Remarkably raw in their expressions of love and desire, this collection is an impassioned and refreshing antidote to the mind games of modern dating. Prepare for a no-filter ride through the highs and lows of being in love.
Can love really conquer all? In this heartfelt coming-of-age story, author and journalist Huma Qureshi shares her experience of growing up in a south Asian community and falling for the ‘wrong’ person. A moving memoir about love, loss, family and self-discovery, How We Met offers a candid account of the challenges that come with trying to reconcile your heritage with your happily ever after.
We could all do with a bit of escapism right now - preferably to somewhere hot and sunny with no social distancing in sight. Cue a sensual summer romance set on the Italian Riviera. Now an Oscar-nominated film, Call Me By Your Name is a contemporary classic that charts the twists and turns of the relationship between 17-year-old Elio and older man Oliver. Prepare to relive the heat and heartbreak of your first love…
This poetry collection is the ideal partner in book form: romantic, pretty to look at, and full of variety. Brought to life by Chris Riddell’s wonderful illustrations, the poems are a magical mix of musings on love from the likes of Shakespeare (obviously), Leonard Cohen, Kate Tempest and Carol Ann Duffy. We should warn you, though - the wedding-worthy contents of these pages may have you saying ‘I do’ to the very first person that messages on Hinge.