Like This, Read That: Holiday Romances to Read Based on Your Favorite Tropes

A collage of the covers included in this article

It’s (almost) the most wonderful time of the year! Let it snow, we say, because our winter plans include cozy nights reading romances in front of the fire. Here, we’ve rounded up a mix of front and backlist romances for both adult and YA readers—organized by some of our favorite tropes and themes. Pick your favorite and dive in!

If you can’t get enough of fake dating…

Just Like Magic by Sarah Hogle

What happens when you accidentally summon the human embodiment of the Holiday Spirit? Ask him to be your fake boyfriend, of course! Fingers crossed you don’t fall in love before he disappears.

A Valentine for Christmas by Reese Ryan

The first in the Valentine Vineyards series is an age-gap romance. Chandra Valentine agrees to pose as Dr. Julian Brandon’s girlfriend, only for their chemistry to quickly turn into real feelings.

If your heart swoons for a second chance…

Kiss Her Once for Me by Alison Cochrun

Ellie agrees to be her friend Andrew’s fiancée, only to later realize that his sister is Jack—the woman who Ellie fell in love with over the course of a single night last Christmas Eve.

Just for the Holidays… by Adriana Herrera

Casting director Perla Sambrano needs to sign on actor Gael Montez, her ex, as the lead in a new show. She’s determined to not let emotions get in the way, but that changes when a blizzard hits.

If you love YA books and the forced proximity of being snowed in…

Eight Nights of Flirting by Hannah Reynolds

Getting a boyfriend by Hanukkah would be easier if Shira Barbanel knew how to flirt. When she gets snowed in with the popular Tyler, she asks for his advice on how to win her crush, only to start falling for Tyler instead.

Whiteout by Dhonielle Clayton, Tiffany D. Jackson, Nic Stone, Angie Thomas, Ashley Woodfolk, Nicola Yoon

Six young adult authors tell connecting stories about twelve friends trying to pull off an epic apology just as a massive snowstorm hits their Atlanta neighborhood before Christmas.

If you’re hooked on holiday movies and want books inspired by them…

The Holiday Trap by Roan Parrish

Fans of the cinematic masterpiece The Holiday won’t want to miss this queer dual romance following Greta and Truman, who swap houses for the holiday season and find love along the way.

Amor Actually by Adriana Herrera, Alexis Daria, Diana Muñoz Stewart, Mia Sosa, Priscilla Oliveras, Sabrina Sol, Zoey Castile

If Love Actually is your go-to holiday movie, then this needs to be at the top of your TBR. These nine short stories draw inspiration from the film to tell an original interconnecting tale.

If a workplace romance gets your pulse pounding…

Sweet on You by Carla de Guzman

Who doesn’t love a little friendly rivalry around the holidays? Attraction sparks after café owner Sari and bakery owner Gabriel get into a prank war to compete for their Filipino community’s patronage.

A Merry Little Meet Cute by Julie Murphy, Sierra Simone

Two beloved authors joined forces to bring the heat this winter with this story of an adult film star and former boy band singer hitting it off on the set of a family-friendly holiday movie.

If you’d like to visit a sapphic-run Christmas tree farm…

In the Event of Love by Courtney Kae

Is there anything purer than saving a Christmas tree farm from corporate greed? Event planner Morgan Ross sets out to do just that when she learns that Rachel Reed’s business is in trouble.

Season of Love by Helena Greer

Don’t miss our interview with Helena Greer on the inspiration behind this queer Jewish take on classic Hallmark tropes featuring a farm manager falling for the business’s new owner!

If you crave the tension of enemies-to-lovers in YA…

The Christmas Clash by Suzanne Park

The children of rival restaurant owners Chloe Kwon and Peter Li realize that they have to put differences aside to save the mall where their families work from a condo developer.

How to Excavate a Heart by Jake Maia Arlow

This holiday romance kicks off with a meet disaster between two Jewish lesbians when Shani accidentally hits May with her car. But getting snowed in together gives them a chance to start over.

If you love planning (and reading about) giant holiday celebrations…

Miracles and Menorahs by Stacey Agdern

Isaac Lieberman’s distaste for his town’s commercialized Hollowville Hanukkah Festival starts to shift when Sarah Goldman steps in as vice chair and asks him to consider creating a sculpture for the event.

You’re a Mean One, Matthew Prince by Timothy Janovsky

A cut-off 21-year-old socialite shipped off to the Berkshires starts to fall for a cute local when the two team up to plan the Wind River Holiday Charity Gala together in this queer new adult romance.

Which romances are on your winter TBR?

Kelly Gallucci

Kelly Gallucci is the Executive Editor of We Are Bookish, where she oversees the editorial content, offers book recommendations, and interviews authors and NetGalley members. When she's not working, Kelly can be found color coordinating her bookshelves, eating Chipotle, and watching way too many baking shows.

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