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18 Christmas Romance Books to Choose From This Season

Updated: Aug 19, 2023

In the past year, I've rediscovered my love of reading and the credit for that belongs in part to the contemporary romance genre. These books aren't the Nicholas Sparks-type romances I once knew - they're so much better (not to mention spicier).

Given this, I plan to dive head-first into as many Christmas romance books as possible this holiday season. If you're also looking for a holiday-themed romance, then look no further. Here are 18 Christmas romance books that caught my eye and will hopefully catch yours too.

Best Christmas Romance Books

1. Window Shopping by Tessa Bailey

A lot of Christmas romance books seem to lean a bit on the tamer side of things. But given that the author of Window Shopping is Tessa Bailey, you can rest assured that there will be a healthy dose of spicy chapters included in this one - just like there was in her other book, Fix Her Up. Plus, it features the grumpy/sunshine trope between a woman admiring the department store window decor and the owner of said department store.

2. Dipped in Holly by Dana Isaly

While we're on the topic of spicy Christmas romance reads, let's talk about Dipped in Holly by Dana Isaly, who is known for her fantasy and dark romances. In this book, Holly has just been dumped when she meets a handsome silver fox and bar owner dressed as sexy Mrs. Claus. But after their "kinky one-night stand they’re left questioning if it was enough." If you're okay with some good, spicy fun, and nothing too deep, then this is the Christmas book for you.

3. The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan

There was one review in particular that stood out to me and made me want to read The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan. The review from Chellewill on Barnes and Noble said, "From the descriptions of the village to the magical window displays, one feels they’ve landed in an enchanting setting. Throw in a love triangle, some sibling rivalry, and an opportunity to start anew, and the results are a captivating holiday read." Did that sell you as it did me?

4. The Holiday Swap by Maggie Knox

This is one book on the list that seems like the perfect option for those who want a wholesome and heartwarming Christmas romance novel. Just listen to this description of The Holiday Swap: "A feel-good, holiday-themed romantic comedy about identical twins who switch lives in the days leading up to Christmas." Plus, it has many positive reviews from past readers who have scored it a 3.6/5 on Goodreads and a 4/5 on Amazon.

5. Always, in December by Emily Stone

Always, in December focuses on two people - Josie and Max - who meet by chance in December and each have their own reasons for avoiding the holidays. After they begin to fall for each other though, Max disappears. Although, fate seems to want them together as they keep meeting over the course of the next year. Will their past hurt and pain keep them apart or will they finally find a way to stay together for good? Guess we'll have to read it to find out.

6. The Christmas Pact by Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward

If you don't have the capacity for a full-length book, then The Christmas Pact is the Christmas romance novella for you. In fact, the average reader could finish it in 1 hour and 28 minutes, according to How Long to Read. It's about a couple who make a pact (as the name suggests) - "Kennedy will go home with Riley for a Christmas party and pretend to be her boyfriend if Riley agrees to be his date to a wedding." As one would expect, as Kennedy and Riley play pretend, real feelings develop, which makes them question what they thought they knew.

7. Lovelight Farms by B.K. Borison

If you're a fan of the friends-to-lovers and fake dating tropes, then Lovelight Farms is the Christmas romance book for you. It's about a girl who wants to save Lovelight Farms, a Christmas tree farm she's loved since she was a kid and to do so enters a contest. Although, she lies on her application and says she owns the farm with her boyfriend - a boyfriend who doesn't exist. That's when her best friend enters the picture to take on the role of her fake boyfriend.

8. In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren

Given the positive reviews of Christina Lauren's other books like The Unhoneymooners, Love and Other Words, and The Soulmate Equation, I think there's reason to believe In a Holidaze is going to be a good Christmas romance book to curl up with this season. Not only do GoodReads reviewers use words like "flirty," "entertaining," and "fresh" to describe it, but they also promise that it's spicy!

9. A Princess for Christmas by Jenny Holiday

What's better than one Christmas romance book? How about 3? A Princess for Christmas is the first book in Jenny Holiday's, A Princess for Christmas series, so if you like it, you'll have two others just like it to read. Plus, who doesn't love a good royal romance?

10. The Christmas Wedding Guest by Susan Mallery

According to one GoodReads reviewer, "If you're looking for a too-good-to-be-true story neatly wrapped up like a gift, you'll likely enjoy this one." Not only do I not mind this, but I also find it intriguing thatThe Christmas Wedding Guest gives us two sisters' love stories in one book.

11. The Mistletoe Motive by Chloe Liese

Are you a fan of the enemies-to-lovers trope? Do you like a good slow burn? If so, you'll be happy to hear that The Mistletoe Motive features both! In it, Jonathan and Gabriella are complete opposites working in a failing bookstore at Christmas. With their jobs on the line, the two "strike a bargain: whoever has more sales in December gets to stay on in the new year." However, as the competition gets underway Gabrielle begins to see a new side of her nemesis that has her questioning everything.

12. Meet Me Under the Mistletoe by Jenny Bayliss

What is it with Christmas romance books and bookshops? Whatever it is, I'm on board with it. In Meet Me Under the Mistletoe, Nory is a bookshop owner from London who travels to the English countryside to reunite with her old private school friends at a castle. However, when she arrives she starts falling for the castle’s gardener, Issac, who has strong feelings about the wealthy friends she keeps. What readers and reviewers alike seem to enjoy most about this book is that it doesn't just "capture the same small-town charm and holiday cheer," it also "tackles themes of class relations, self-acceptance, family loyalty, and the value of old friendships and new love."

13. A Little Christmas Spirit by Sheila Roberts

Given that Sheila Roberts is the author of 11 standalone Christmas romance books, I'd say she's one of the queens of the genre. In A Little Christmas Spirit, Lexie is fully prepared to make the most of the holidays with her son in their new home. Unfortunately, the "reclusive widower next door is more grinchy than nice." However, after he sees his late wife in a dream, he's determined to regain the Christmas spirit he lost and who better to help him do that than Lexie and her son.

14. Just Like Magic by Sarah Hogle

Just Like Magic is one of the newest Christmas romance's on this list, having been released in October of 2022. This means that there aren't a ton of reviews for it yet, but of the ones that do exist, this one from Christy on GoodReads definitely caught my eye: "Just Like Magic is hilarious, outlandish, truly magical, and such a good time. I can't remember the last time I smiled so much while reading. You do have to suspend your disbelief a bit, but it's perfectly odd in the best way."

15. A Merry Little Meet Cute by Julie Murphy and Sierra Simone

I'm going to let this brief description of A Merry Little Meet Cute speak for itself: "A steamy plus-size holiday rom-com about an adult film star who is semi-accidentally cast as a lead in a family-friendly Christmas movie, and the former bad-boy pop star she falls in love with." I can't believe how genuinely unique and fun this sounds for a Christmas romance book!

16. Eight Perfect Hours by Lia Louis

It would seem according to the positive reviews on GoodReads and Amazon that Eight perfect Hours is exactly the kind of heartwarming Christmas romance book you want to read around the holidays. It's about two people, Noelle and Sam, who meet during a blizzard and spend eight perfect hours together, hence the title. While they think they'll never see each other again, Lia Louis adds in "plenty of charming twists and turns" that keep the pair coming back to one another.

17. Once Upon a December by Amy E. Reichert

The most common words used to describe Once Upon a December by Amy E. Reichert include "sweet," "heartwarming," and "light-hearted" - all of which is exactly what I'm looking for in my Christmas romance books. Plus, this review by Book Bruin on GoodReads made it sound a bit different than the rest: "The book flips between the past and present which lets you see how Jack and Astra’s relationship developed over the years. Yes, it’s insta-love, but also in a way it’s not."

18. The Christmas Wish by Lindsey Kelk

When another contemporary romance author like Emily Henry (author of Book Lovers and People We meet On Vacation) says, "I'll read anything she [Lindsey Kelk]" writes, I immediately have hope that it's going to be good. In The Christmas Wish, Gwen's life is hanging by a thread when she returns home for Christmas where she begins to relive Christmas day over and over again. As she does, she gets to know the tall, dark, and handsome stranger who was once her boy-next-door crush. The question then becomes, "How do you fall in love with someone who can’t remember you from one day to the next?"


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