If you’re like me, then the only thing you’ve been thinking about, listening to and obsessing over for the past week is Taylor Swift’s daydream of an album Lover. One of her strongest albums yet, and the first that she owns the master tapes to (#Girlboss), it’s an 18-song masterpiece and a dramatic ode to romance. Belting along to your favourite new song lyrics doesn’t exactly pair well with reading, but have no fear! If you like these nine hits from Lover, then you’ll love these romance novels that pair with them!
Love Cruel Summer? Try Slammed by Colleen Hoover!
“I don’t want to keep secrets just to keep you.”
Slammed is a tale of forbidden love between teacher and student, and boy is it steamy! Cruel Summer talks about a new summer fling kept secret which takes a toll on the pair of lovers, just like Lakyn and Will, who meet in the summer and then discover their student/teacher relationship after the sparks have ignited. Slam poetry plays a major role in this plot, akin to Taylor’s lyrical words for her new man.
Love I Think He Knows? Try The Hating Game by Sally Thorne!
“Wanna see what’s under that attitude.”
This cheeky romp is about liking someone and having them like you back. It’s a game of cat and mouse, full of sexual tension and overall fun just like Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game. A personal favourite of mine, The Hating Game features a workplace romance between sworn enemies Lucy and Josh who have a magnetic connection that turns into a competition for a coveted promotion. Lucy wants the promotion but Josh is after something even greater – her heart!
Love Paper Rings? Try Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell!
“I hate accidents except when we went from friends to this.”
Fangirl is a coming-of-age romance about a college freshman, her slight obsession with fanfiction, and an older country-boy-next-door who helps her break out of her shell. From friends to lovers, Fangirl is a perfect match for Paper Rings.
Love Cornelia Street? Try Cure for the Common Breakup by Beth Kendrick!
“I hope I never lose you, I hope it never ends. I’d never walk Cornelia Street again.”
Cornelia Street is an anxious tune replaying the time that Taylor and her man got together on a street named, you guessed it, Cornelia Street. She worries he’s not into her, second guesses herself and just when she’s about to leave, he reveals his hand. This reminded me of Beth Kendrick’s first novel in the Black Dog Bay Series, about a woman named Summer who unexpectedly meets a man in a place of heartbreak. Black Dog Bay is Summer’s Cornelia Street, and both Taylor and Summer end up in the place they’re meant to be by the end.
Love Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince? Try Paper Princess by Erin Watt.
“They whisper in the hallway ‘She’s a bad, bad girl’”
This is the darkest song on the album of otherwise upbeat tunes, about a girl who’s fallen from grace and looking to run away. She finds her prince though, who helps her through all the bullshit people say about her to succeed in the end. Paper Princess’s Ella goes through trying times and ends up in a world she doesn’t recognize, only to fall for the bad boy she shouldn’t want. It’s delicious and steamy, and gives me “Miss Americana” vibes through and through.
Love London Boy? Try One Day in December by Josie Silver
“You know I love a London boy”
Laurie searches London, looking for the man she fell in love with through a bus window in the delightful One Day in December. Trapeze around the English streets in both of these fantastic tales of love in the city.
Love You Need to Calm Down? Try The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
“Cuz shade never made anybody less gay.”
Taylor’s hit single takes a shot at all the haters out there, and uses a bit of sassy wordplay to remind people to be more tolerant – something that The Gentleman’s Guide does best. Follow Monty and Percy as they go on an adventure through 1700’s Europe on Monty’s Grand Tour, exploring their sexuality, testing societal norms and maybe even encountering pirates along the way? Both the novel and song are cheeky but have a strong message: hate in any era is so overrated.
Love It’s Nice To Have a Friend? Try Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren.
“Something gave you the nerve to touch my hand.”
This is a simple love story between childhood friends. It’s the perfect theme to famed romance duo Christina Lauren’s more serious novel Love and Other Words, about high school sweethearts who fall apart and then fall back together. It’s tender and romantic with just a hint of mystery thrown in.
Love Lover? Try Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz.
“I’ve loved you three summers now honey, I want em all.”
The title track of the album, Lover is just a great love song. There’s no doubts about it, no questions asked, just a girl confessing her love for someone. Benjamin Alire Saenz’s writing reminds me of Taylor’s here; so much beauty in their descriptive wordplay and so much love involved. Ari and Dante is about the lives of two Mexican American boys as they come-of-age and learn the power of love in a world trying to tear them apart. Like this album, and this song, it is a masterpiece.