Science Fiction Romance (Space Opera)

  • Lois McMaster Bujold – she creates characters who are unforgettable.  There has never been and never will be a better character than Miles Vorkosigan… anywhere… ever!
    • Recommended books:  the entire Vorkosigan Saga, starting with Cordelia’s Honor
    • Favorite character:  Definitely Miles… but I really love his cousin Ivan too!
  • Sharon Lee & Steve Miller – together they’ve invented the Liaden Universe which as an almost cult-like following.  Their characters are quite fun to read, but it’s the honor code by which they live that makes them truly unique and endearing.
    • Recommended books:  Anything that is part of the Liaden Universe series.  It helps to read these in order, but it’s not necessary. I started with Agent of Change which according to Amazon is book 9 of 19 at the moment.  Most of these books were written out of chronological order, so you may see varying lists as to which one is the ‘first’.
    • Favorite character has to be Val Con yos’Phelium.
    • Favorite books:  Agent of ChangeCarpe DiemLocal CustomConflict of HonorsScout’s Progress.  These probably proved the most inside into the core characters that you will read about over time if you continue reading the series.

Science Fiction Romance (middle of the road)

Science Fiction Romance (light plot, but fun/easy reads – the aliens are human/very close to human)

Paranormal Romance

  • G.A. Aiken – lovely writer, with a lot of details and characters you’ll love.
    • Recommended books:  the Dragon Kin series…. probably my first shifters series ever.
  • Shana Abé – loved everything about the books

Alien Romance

  • Amanda Milo – some of her books have dark aspects, but she has such a gift for making characters come alive and making a reading want to soak up every word. These are not fast reads, and you may find yourself re-reading sections to figure out what she’s talking about because the descriptions are often from the POV of an alien who’s never seen humans or human trappings such as chocolate and coffee.  Have a leap of faith and read her work… you won’t be sorry. These are not ‘plot-rich’ books, but about the relationships between humans and aliens (Aliens here are non merely humans from another planet… they are individuals with a wide array of features, culture and abilities).
    • Recommended books:  all…. start with Stolen by an Alien though, as these books do tie together in terms of characters and plot.
  • Ruby Dixon – Her characters are rich and easy to fall in love with.  Ones you start off thinking are idiots turn into your favorites once you see their stories.  She has several series, with wonderful world building. Each set of hero/heroine get their own book, but they books all overlap, so when possible, start in the beginning.
  • Susan Trombley – she knows how to make a human pairing with an alien (really out of this world aliens that make you think of ‘animal’ more than humanoid) work.

Dark Romance

  • Claire Kent – dark and vivid, but there’s a story there. Recommended books:  Hold
  • Allison Aimes– dark and vivid.  Recommended books:  Trapped (part of the Condemned Series).
  • Emmy Chandler – dark, vivid, great characters.   Recommended series:  Prison Planet.

Military Romance

  • Susan Stoker – excellent job depicting the military aspect (Delta force and SEALS).  Some aspects can be slightly dark/scary because they come across as all too realistic.

Reverse Harem Romance

  • Rebecca Royce – she has a talent for making each of her characters unique, even in a harem with six husbands!  Her books are hard to put down and the plot is well conceived.
    • Recommended books:  the entire Wings of Artemis series.   I read them out of order (books #3,4,5,6,7,8,1,2) and had no trouble figuring out what was happening, though reading them in order would have been ideal.  I have to catch up as & 9 is already out! Be forewarned, if you’re searching on Amazon, the books in the series aren’t well linked, so look for Kidnapped by Her Husbands to start. She writes in pairs, meaning each heroine gets two books.  My favorite heroines in the group are Paoloma (books 5 & 6), Diana (books 3 & 4), Melissa (Books 1 & 2) , Waverly (books 7 & 8).
  • Ava Mason – Her books aren’t heavy on plot, but they’re sexy. The characters don’t have a lot of depth.  I’m not quite sure what I really liked about these books, but they were hard to put down.

Nitty Gritty Romance

Clean Romance

  • Robin D. Owens

Fantasy Romance

  • Jennifer Roberson – Her style is packed with rich world building and complex characters who are easy to love, including her bad-ass/reserved heroine (Del) who doesn’t let her guard down easily.
  • Lisa Shearin – rich world building.  Love her heroine’s wit and snarky attitude.

Paranormal / Magic / Time Travel Highlander Romance

Regency Romance

Fantasy

  • Steven Brust – Who would think a reader could learn to love an assassin? Vlad has sarcasm, wit, and a friendship with his jhereg (‘pet’ dragon) that will draw you in.
    • Recommended books: the Entire Vlad Taltos / “Jhereg” series… Jhereg, Yendi, Teckla, Orca, Athyra, Jhegaala, Vallista (this list is out of order)
  • Barbara Hambly – admittedly, I haven’t read her more recent works.  I read many of her book when I was in college and they kept me up to the early hours reading.