My Five Favorite Summer Romances by Beth O’Leary


[Note from Frolic: We’re so excited to welcome author Beth O’Leary to the site today. She has the perfect summer romance recommendations for you!]

Isn’t there just something sexy about summertime? Low hot sun, flip-flops and maxi dresses, ice clinking in a cold glass… It’s a time for long, cool evenings and walking barefoot, for holiday hook-ups and slow, lazy days. 

So it’s no wonder that we romance writers can’t resist it. When I first came up with the concept for my third book, The Road Trip, I actually considered setting it in a snowstorm – I knew I wanted my two protagonists to have a seriously challenging car journey across the UK, and snow would guarantee it. But we were in the midst of a super-hot summer here in England, and I’d just been on holiday to beautiful Provence in France, and I was in the mood to write something sunny. So The Road Trip now cuts between the hottest day of the British year and a long, gorgeous French summertime, and I loved getting the chance to luxuriate in writing some hot weather.

I’m not the only rom-com writer who has made the most of summertime in their books. Here are a few of my favourite sunny romances, perfect for popping in your holiday suitcase. And if summer holidays aren’t an option this year… then all the more reason to pick up a book that’ll whisk you away somewhere hot!

Beach Read by Emily Henry

I fell head over heels for this gorgeous romance between two authors suffering from writers’ block. (Maybe it was just a tad relatable at times.) Cash-strapped and newly single, January moves into the beach house her dad left her, which also just happens to be the house he shared with his mistress. And who is in the place next door? None other than January’s college nemesis, who is one of those wonderfully grumpy, brooding romantic leads who you can’t help but fall for. The chemistry in this book is sizzling.

Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto

This is one of my standout books of the year so far: darkly comical, brilliantly romantic and so original. When our main character Meddy Chan accidentally kills her blind date, she rings her aunties to help her deal with the aftermath. The family run a wedding business together, and they’re organising a huge, glamorous wedding at an island resort, so disposing of the body has to be done alongside bridal makeup and cake decorating! It’s so farcical and so funny, but at its heart it’s also a really sweet love story.

The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory

This romance novel and Reese Witherspoon Book Club pick begins where most love stories end: with a proposal! Jasmine Guillory brilliantly turns the genre on its head in this charming, sweet rom com set in sunny LA. I defy you to read about gorgeous family-man Carlos and not fall in love.

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

This slow-burn rom com whisks us away on a package holiday in Maui with Olive and Ethan, who are not the newly married couple the honeymoon was intended for. They are arch enemies and now in-laws, and circumstance throws them together on the trip of a lifetime. This book has all the cuteness and chemistry you’d expect from a Christina Lauren novel, with added sand between your toes!  

Secrets of a Summer Night by Lisa Kleypas

If you loved Bridgerton and are in the mood for some regency romance (and some sunshine) then this book would be a great choice. It introduces us to the Wallflowers, four women always found on the edges of the ballroom, never asked to dance. The women form a heart-warming friendship and work as a team to find each of them a husband. This novel is set in the rolling countryside of Hampshire, which is where I live, and I can promise it is just as beautiful in the summertime as Lisa Kleypas makes it sound.

About the Author:

Beth O’Leary is a Sunday Times bestselling author whose novels have been translated into more than thirty languages. Her debut, THE FLATSHARE, sold over half a million copies and changed her life completely. Her second novel, THE SWITCH, has been optioned for film by Amblin Partners, Steven Spielberg’s production company. Beth writes her books in the Hampshire countryside with a very badly behaved golden retriever for company. If she’s not at her desk, you’ll usually find her curled up somewhere with a book, a cup of tea and several woolly jumpers (whatever the weather).

The Road Trip by Beth O’Leary, out now!

Two exes reach a new level of awkward when forced to take a road trip together in this endearing and humorous novel by the author of the international bestseller The Flatshare.

What if the end of the road is just the beginning?

Four years ago, Dylan and Addie fell in love under the Provence sun. Wealthy Oxford student Dylan was staying at his friend Cherry’s enormous French villa; wild child Addie was spending her summer as the on-site caretaker. Two years ago, their relationship officially ended. They haven’t spoken since.

Today, Dylan’s and Addie’s lives collide again. It’s the day before Cherry’s wedding, and Addie and Dylan crash cars at the start of the journey there. The car Dylan was driving is wrecked, and the wedding is in rural Scotland—he’ll never get there on time by public transport.

So, along with Dylan’s best friend, Addie’s sister, and a random guy on Facebook who needed a ride, they squeeze into a space-challenged Mini and set off across Britain. Cramped into the same space, Dylan and Addie are forced to confront the choices they made that tore them apart—and ask themselves whether that final decision was the right one after all.

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