[Note from Frolic: We’re so excited to have author Samantha Young guest post on the site today to chat about all things enemies to lovers! Take it away, Samantha!]
There is no trope I enjoy more than enemies-to-lovers, whether I’m writing it or reading it. Why, you ask? Because there’s nothing like the anticipation and giddiness of watching two characters who hate at first sight slowly start to delve beneath the surface of each other and not only discover who they really are, but fall for who they really are too. The banter, the sexual tension, the hilarious misunderstandings, and that inevitable explosion of sexual chemistry leading to passionate love, is everything I want from a romance. Here are just a few of my top favorite recommendations for enemies-to-lovers romance novels:
This list would not be complete without The Hating Game. Lucy and Joshua are the ultimate enemies, trapped in a shared office and battling it out for promotion. Sally Thorne does a masterful job of slowly developing their ugly competitiveness into attraction and then love. This combines both of my favorites of slow burn romance and enemies-to-lovers and is a must read for all fans of the trope.
I can’t say much without spoiling this trilogy for those who haven’t read it, but this is one of my favorite series of all time. Both book one and book two share the trope of enemies-to-lovers but A Court of Mist and Fury is surprising, lush, compelling, addictive and utterly romantic. It’s in my top ten books of all time.
I adore historical romance and Devil in Winter is my favorite of them all. Evie chooses what she considers the lesser of two evils by agreeing to marry dangerous rake Viscount Sebastian St. Vincent. She needs to escape her abusive family and he needs her inheritance. Both share a certain level of contempt for the other, and although their love is slow burn, almost from the beginning they start to see beauty in each other that others have discounted. Witty, passionate and a true adventure, I’ve re-read this book countless times.
This enemies-to-lovers romance isn’t for the faint hearted. Years after an incident in high school put some of the most popular guys in prison, Rika Fane finds herself caught up in the vengeful mind games of Michael Crist, her old crush. Dark, psychological and addictive, Penelope Douglas skilfully draws the reader into an impossible but explosive romance. This is another re-read for me. If you like your enemies-to-lovers with a suspenseful and refreshing twist, this one is not to be missed!
One of my top reads of 2018, The Simple Wild is a stunning, quietly beautiful story of Calla Fletcher’s journey to the wilds of Alaska to get to know her absentee father before he succumbs to terminal illness. During that journey she meets pilot Jonah and their interactions are filled with misunderstanding, misconceptions, and a sizzling undercurrent of chemistry. A gorgeous, quieter enemies-to-lovers romance than the others on my list, but no less impactful.
Yelena is one of my all time favorite heroines. Imprisoned for murder, she’s dragged out of jail instead, and forced to become the Commander’s new food taster. Trained by dangerous assassin Valek in poison study, their deep mistrust of each other slowly begins to turn to love as they work together to uncover a rebel plot. There is a ton of action and adventure in Poison Study, but it’s the tangible chemistry between Yelena and Valek that make this one of my ultimate re-reads.
There cannot be an enemies-to-lovers romance list without P&P on it. It’s the one of the originals and has inspired so many retellings over the last two centuries. Elizabeth and Darcy’s hate-to-love story is the reason I’m so addicted to the trope. It launched my love for it. P&P transcends period and culture and will forever be one of the greatest enemies-to-lovers romances of all time.
About the Author:
Samantha Young is a New York Times and #1 International bestselling author from Stirlingshire, Scotland. On Dublin Street was Samantha’s first adult contemporary romance series and has sold in thirty countries. She has since published over thirteen romance titles including the New York Times Bestsellers Into the Deep, Hero, and her most recent contemporary romance Fight or Flight. When writing Adult Paranormal romance she writes under the pen name S. Young.
Thea Quinn has no idea what she is. All she knows is that her abilities have been a plague upon her life since she was a child. After years of suffering at the hands of a megalomaniac, Thea escaped and has been on the run ever since.
The leadership and protection of his pack are of the utmost importance to Conall MacLennan, Alpha and Chief of Clan MacLennan, the last werewolf pack in Scotland. Which is why watching his sister slowly die of a lycanthropic disease is emotional torture. When Conall is approached by a businessman who offers a cure for his sister in exchange for the use of Conall’s rare tracking ability, Conall forges an unbreakable contract with him. He has to find and retrieve the key to the cure: dangerous murderer, Thea Quinn.
Thea’s attempts to evade the ruthless werewolf are not only thwarted by the Alpha, but by outside dangers. With no choice but to rely on one another for survival, truths are revealed, intensifying a passionate connection they both fight to resist. At war with themselves and each other, Conall and Thea’s journey to Scotland forces them to face a heartrending choice between love and betrayal.