Sakshi Jain

The Best Romance Novels of 2022

The genre has had an exceptional year — one of its best of all time.

KD Casey’s FIRE SEASON (Carina Press, ebook, $4.99)

The story of two major-league pitchers who become roommates and then considerably more.

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Akwaeke Emezi’s YOU MADE A FOOL OF DEATH WITH YOUR BEAUTY (Atria, 278 pp., $27).

Widows are stock characters in romance, but rarely is the experience treated with such brutal depth as in this tale of Feyi, a young, haunted Black widow who falls for her new boyfriend’s famous father.

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Mia Hopkins’s TANKED (Little Stone, ebook, $4.99).

Gorgeous and emotionally bruising, this story of a former underground fighter and a social worker out of work will wring you out in the best way.

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Alexis Hall’s SOMETHING FABULOUS (Montlake, 363 pp., paperback, $9.99)

This tale riffs ruthlessly on classic historical romance archetypes in a way that verges on surreal and anarchic, even as the emotional through-line (a domineering duke unlearning power while relearning himself and his desires) stays engagingly tender and sincere.

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Jeannie Lin’s RED BLOSSOM IN SNOW (Independently published, 300 pp., paperback, $14.99)

Sadness is a necessary balancing flavor in romance, and Lin makes it shine like the moon in this tale of cross-class lovers, family secrets and murder.

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Sangu Mandanna’s THE VERY SECRET SOCIETY OF IRREGULAR WITCHES (Berkley, 336 pp., paperback, $17)

An effervescent stunner about a lonely modern witch hired to teach three troublesome younger witches at an idyllic country house with gardens full of secrets.

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Ashley Poston’s THE DEAD ROMANTICS (Berkley, 345 pp., paperback, $17)

A romance ghostwriter on deadline loses her father, and then encounters the ghost of her hot new editor, who cannot pass over until she finishes her latest manuscript.

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