YA Romances Featuring Polar Opposite Love Interests


Enemies-to-lovers stories are some of our absolute favorites. They are even better when the main love interests are a total 180 of one another like an angry girl and a focused robot or determined Princess of India and reserved Lord of England. While these characters may each have their own strengths and weaknesses, it is what they do together as a team that makes us root whole-heartedly for them and their relationship. Here are six YA romances that feature characters that are hot and cold, day and night. 

Crier’s War by Nina Varela

Ayla is a human girl, and Crier is a girl who has been Made, an Automae. One is the total enemy of the other, but they can’t help but fall for each other in a post-war world. Once the Automae were the playthings of royal humans, but that was before the War of Kinds and the Automae became the rulers. Ayla now works as a servant to Lady Crier and her father the Sovereign, determined on revenge and killing Crier. Crier is determined to follow her father’s footsteps and rule – but that was before she was engaged to the secretive Scyre Kinok. But when the two girls join together to fight for a new cause, nothing can stand in their way – except maybe each other. 

Of Curses and Kisses by Sandhya Menon

Beauty and the Beast gets a modern makeover set in the mountains of St. Rosetta’s Academy. The Raos and the Emersons have been fighting for centuries, but when Princess Jaya’s little sister becomes the Emersons latest target, Jaya is determined on revenge. The best way to do it? Make Grey Emerson fall in love with her – and break his heart. But even as this pair annoys and falls for one another, they might be the secret to breaking a spell years in the making. Jaya is such a fun and driven character. You won’t help but root for her and Grey’s will-they, won’t-they relationship. 

Dark of the West by Joanna Hathaway

If you love Downton Abbey or the historical tale of Anastasia, this enemies-to-lovers is perfect for you. Princess Aurelia has grown in a palace but is sheltered from politics as her brother prepares to take the throne of their kingdom. Athan is the son of a general and pilot who would rather spend his days flying high above the clouds. When Athan’s mother is killed, his father suspects Aurelia’s mother to be behind the plot and sends Athan to spy on Aurelia and her family. But what Athan nor Aurelia expect is to fall for each other – or for their black and white worlds to crumble around them. 

The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski

Historical fiction romance comes in many different forms. This one just happens to be absolutely amazing. Kestrel is the daughter of a general who isn’t interested in joining the military or getting married. Arin is a slave who Kestrel buys after finding a kindred spirit within him. Soon Kestrel falls for Arin, but Arin has his own secrets and Kestrel must learn that the price she paid for a fellow human being is much higher than she could imagine. This trilogy is thought-provoking, moving, and wonderfully intense. 

Nocturna by Maya Motayne

Finn Voy is a shapeshifting thief whose magic has helped her get out of many scrapes over the years. Prince Alfehr is now the next in line after his older brother was murdered and is willing to dabble in forbidden magic if that means he can get his brother back. When Finn is captured by a powerful mobster, she must steal a treasure from the palace or lose her magic forever. But Finn and Alfie accidentally release a terrible power they must work together to combat it. Finn and Alfie may seem like total opposites, but when they work together, they do amazing things. 

The Henna Wars by Adiba Jaigirdar 

Nishat and Flávia may come from two very different cultural backgrounds, but the sparks fly between these two! Nishat and Flávia attend an all-girls Catholic high school in Dublin where they are met with a new school assignment: create the best business and win a cash prize. Nishat decides to create a henna business inspired by her Bangladeshi culture, but Flávia decides to do the same even though henna isn’t a part of her culture. As the competition becomes nastier, Nishat is determined to not lose her family or herself along the way. 

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