30 Best Historical Romance Books

Because we are so familiar with the modern world, it can get a little boring at times. Which is exactly why we need some enchanting historical romance books to sprinkle in some excitement. From gorgeous ball gowns to handsome men, these historical romances have everything you need to get lost in history. So, check them out now!

best romance books: emma

Emma – Jane Austen

Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition, seemed to unite some of the best blessings of existence; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very little to distress or vex her. The real evils, indeed, of Emma’s situation were the power of having rather too much her own way, and a disposition to think a little too well of herself. The danger, however, was at present so unperceived, that they did not by any means rank as misfortunes with her.

Historical Romance Books: nine rules to break when romancing a rake

Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake – Sarah MacLean

A wonderfully talented new author joins the Avon Romance family—Sarah MacLean, who fans of Eloisa James and Julia Quinn will immediately take into their hearts! Sarah’s delectable debut, Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake, is the Regency Era romp readers have been waiting for—fresh, fun, and wonderfully romantic—placing her solidly in the company of Elizabeth Hoyt, Sophie Jordan, and others of the new generation of exciting up-and-comers.

Historical Romance Books: the bride

The Bride – Julie Garwood

By edict of the king, the mighty Scottish laird Alec Kincaid must take an English bride. His choice is Jamie, youngest daughter of Baron Jamison – a feisty, violet-eyed beauty. Alec aches to touch her, to tame her, to possess her forever. But Jamie has vowed never to surrender to a man she considers a highland barbarian.

Historical Romance Books: outlander

Outlander – Diana Gabaldon

Outlander Book 1

It’s the year 1946, just after World War 2. So combat nurse Claire heads to the Scottish Highlands with her husband Frank. The plan is for it to be a second honeymoon, to reignite the love. But suddenly, Claire is no longer in 1946. It’s now 1743. Whilst trying to escape Black Jack Randall, she finds herself captured by a gang of Scottish outlaws. Her only chance of safety lies in Jamie Fraser, a gallant Scot warrior.

Historical Romance Books: mine till midnight

Mine Till Midnight – Lisa Kleypas

When an unexpected inheritance elevates her family to the ranks of the aristocracy, Amelia Hathaway discovers that tending to her younger sisters and wayward brother was easy compared to the intricacies of the ton. And on top of that, she feels an attraction for the dangerously handsome Cam Rohan.

Historical Romance Books: the maddness of lord ian mackenzie

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie – Jennifer Ashley

It was whispered all through London Society that Ian Mackenzie was mad, that he’d spent his youth in an asylum, and was not to be trusted. Especially with a lady. For the reputation of any woman caught in his presence was instantly ruined. Yet Beth found herself drawn to him.


The Notebook – Nicolas Sparks

At thirty-one, Noah Calhoun, back in coastal North Carolina after World War II, is haunted by images of the girl he lost more than a decade earlier. At twenty-nine, socialite Allie Nelson is about to marry a wealthy lawyer, but she cannot stop thinking about the boy who long ago stole her heart. Thus begins the story of a love so enduring and deep it can turn tragedy into triumph, and may even have the power to create a miracle…

best romance books: jane eyre

Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte

Jane Eyre’s cruel and lonely childhood has strengthened her natural independence and spirit, which proves invaluable when she takes a position as a governess at Thornfield Hall. But after she falls in love with her sardonic employer, her discovery of his terrible secret forces her to make a heart-wrenching choice.


A Week To Be Wicked – Tessa Dare

A reckless British lord is desperate to escape the quaint and too quiet small seaside resort he’s trapped in. And he gets much more than he expected when he agrees to escort a beautiful, brilliant, socially awkward lady scientist to Scotland.

best romance books: the thorn birds

The Thorn Birds – Colleen McCullough

One of the most beloved novels of all time, The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCullough’s sweeping family saga of dreams, titanic struggles, dark passions, and forbidden love in the Australian Outback, returns to enthrall a new generation.


The Beast of Beswick – Amalie Howard

Lord Nathaniel Harte, the disagreeable Duke of Beswick, spends his days smashing porcelain, antagonizing his servants, and snarling at anyone who gets too close. But Lady Astrid Everleigh will stop at nothing to see her younger sister safe from the notorious scoundrel, even if it means offering herself up on a silver platter.


Romancing the Duke – Tessa Dare

As the daughter of famed author, Isolde Ophelia Goodnight grew up on tales of brave nights and fair maidens. She never doubted romance would be in her future, too. The storybooks offered endless possibilities. But what fairy tales are left over for an impoverished twenty-six year-old woman who’s never even been kissed?


Dreaming Of You – Lisa Kleypas

Shy and secluded author Sara Fielding ventures from her country cottage to research a novel and she inadvertently witnesses a crime. And also manages to save the life of the most dangerous man in London. Sara knows that Derek is capable of a passionate love, but he is determined to protect Sara from himself.

best romance books: wuthering heights

Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte

After the death of Catherine’s father, Heathcliff is bullied and humiliated by her brother Hindley and wrongly believing that his love for Catherine is not reciprocated, he leaves Wuthering Heights. Only to return years later as a wealthy and polished man. So, he proceeds to extract a terrible revenge for his former miseries.


The Devil In Winter – Lisa Kleypas

Desperate to escape her scheming relatives, Evangeline Jenner has sought the help of the most infamous scoundrel in London. A marriage of convenience is the only solution. No one could have ever paired the two together. And Evie is a woman of hidden strength and Sebastian desires her more than any woman he’s ever known.

best romance books: gone with the wind

Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell

This is the tale of Scarlett O’Hara, the spoiled, manipulative daughter of a wealthy plantation owner, who arrives at young womanhood just in time to see the Civil War forever change her way of life. A sweeping story of tangled passion and courage, in the pages of, Margaret Mitchell brings to life the unforgettable characters that have captured readers for over seventy years.


A Rogue by Any Other Name – Sarah MacLean

A decade ago, the Marquess of Bourne was cast from society with nothing but his title. Now a partner in London’s most exclusive gaming hell, he will do whatever it takes to regain his inheritance. Including marrying the perfect and proper Lady Penelope Marbury.


Secrets Of A Summer Night – Lisa Kleypas

Annabelle Peyton could have her pick of suitors, if only she had a dowry. Her family is on the brink of disaster and the only way she can save them is to marry a wealthy man. Unfortunately, her most persistent admirer is the brash Simon Hunt, who wants her as his misteress.


Honor’s Splendor – Julie Garwood

In the feuding English court, gentle Lady Madelyne suffered the cruel whims of her ruthless brother, Baron Louddon. Then, in vengeance for a bitter crime, Baron Duncan of Wexton—the Wolf—unleashed his warriors against Louddon. Exquisite Madelyne was the prize he catured…but when he gazed upon the proud beauty, he pledged to protect her with his life. In his rough-hewn castle, Duncan proved true to his honor. But when at last their noble passion conquered them both, she surrendered with all her soul. Now, for love, Madelyne would stand fast…as bravely as her Lord, the powerful Wolf who fought for…Honor’s Splendour.


Whitney, My Love – Judith McNaught

A saucy spitfire who has grown into a ravishing young woman, Whitney Stone returns from her triumphant time in Paris society to England. She plans on marrying her childhood sweetheart, only to discover she has been bargained away by her bankrupt father to the arrogant and alluring Clayton Westmoreland, the Duke of Claymore. Outraged, she defies her new lord. But even as his smoldering passion seduces her into a gathering storm of desire, Whitney cannot—will not—relinquish her dream of perfect love. 


An Extraordinary Union – Alyssa Cole

Elle Burns is a former slave with a passion for justice and eidetic memory. Trading in her life of freedom, she returns to the indignity of slavery in the South to spy for the Union Army. Malcolm McCall is a detective for Pinkerton’s Secret Service. The two undercover agents share a common cause and an undeniable attraction.

best romance books: pride & prejudice

Pride & Prejudice – Jane Austen

Mrs Bennet insists that her daughters find rich husbands and settle down. So when Charles Bingley, his sister Caroline and his friend Mr. Darcy are introduced and start living near the Bennets, she is thrilled. Bingley and Jane are taken with each other, but Elizabeth dislikes Darcy. But fate has other plans for the two of them.


The Duchess Deal – Tessa Dare

Girl Meets Duke Book 1

Since his return from war, the Duke of Ashbury’s to-do list has been short and anything but sweet: brooding, glowering, menacing London ne’er-do-wells by night. Now there’s a new item on the list. He needs an heir—which means he needs a wife. When Emma Gladstone, a vicar’s daughter turned seamstress, appears in his library wearing a wedding gown, he decides on the spot that she’ll do.


Lord of Scoundrels – Loretta Chase

Sebastian Ballister, the notorious Marquess of Dain, is big, bad and dangerous to know. No respectable woman would have anything to do with him and he wants nothing to do with respectable women. Until one day, he meets Jessica Trent, who is far too intelligent to fall for him.

Best Historical Romance Books: The Bridgerton Series – Julia Quinn

bridgerton book series: the duke and i

Book 1 – The Duke And I

Simon Basset is on the verge of proposing to his best friend’s sister – the lovely and almost-on-the-shelf Daphne Bridgerton. But the two of them know the truth – it’s all an elaborate ruse to keep Simon free from marriage-minded society mothers. And as for Daphne, surely she will attract some worthy suitors now that it seems the duke has declared her desirable. And yet, despite their courtship being a sham, somehow Daphne is falling for the dashing duke.

bridgerton book series: the viscount who loved me

Book 2 – The Viscount Who Loved Me

London’s most elusive bachelor Anthony Bridgerton hasn’t just decided to marry – he’s even chosen a wife. The only obstacle is his intended’s older sister, Kate Sheffield. The spirited schemer is driving Anthony mad with her determination to stop the betrothal, but when he closes his eyes at night, Kate’s the woman haunting his dreams. And Kate fears that her own heart is vulnerable to the most wicked rogue’s charms.

bridgerton book series: an offer from a gentleman

Book 3 – An Offer From a Gentleman

Sophie Beckett never dreamed she’d be able to sneak into Lady Bridgerton’s famed masquerade ball – or that ‘Prince Charming’ would be waiting there for her! Though the daughter of an earl, Sophie has been relegated to the role of servant by her disdainful stepmother. But now, spinning in the strong arms of the debonair and devastatingly handsome Benedict Bridgerton, she feels like royalty. Alas, she knows it all must end when the clock strikes midnight.


Book 4 – Romancing Mister Bridgerton

Penelope Featherington has secretly adored her best friend’s brother for what feels like forever. After half a lifetime of watching Colin Bridgerton from afar, she thinks she knows everything about him, until she stumbles across his deepest secret and fears that she doesn’t know him at all.


Book 5 – To Sir Phillip, With Love

Moody and ill-mannered, but handsome Sir Phillip knew that Elise Bridgerton was a spinster, and so he’d proposed figuring that she’d be homely and unassuming, and desperate for an offer of marriage. But he was wrong. The beautiful woman on his doorstep was anything but quiet, and when she stopped talking long enough to close her mouth, all he wanted to do was kiss her.


Book 6 – When He Was Wicked

In every life there is a turning point. For Michael Stirling, London’s most infamous rake, that moment came the first time he laid eyes on Francesca Bridgerton. After a lifetime of chasing women or being chased, he took one look at Francesca and fell so fast and hard in love that it was a wonder he managed to remain standing. Unfortunately, their meeting was a supper celebrating her imminent wedding to his cousin.


Book 7 – It’s In His Kiss

Gareth St. Clair is in a bind. His father, who detests him, is determined to beggar the St. Clair estates and ruin his inheritance. Gareth’s sole bequest is in an old family diary. Written in Italian, of which Gareth speaks not a word. Luckily, he comes into contact with Hyacinth Bridgerton, who offers to translate the diary – even if her Italian is slightly less than perfect.


Book 8 – On The Way To The Wedding

Unlike most men of his acquaintance, Gregory Bridgerton believes in true love. And he is convinced that when he finds the woman of his dreams, he will know in an instant that she is the one. And that is exactly what happened. Except Miss Hermione Watson is in love with another. But her best friend Lucy wants to save Hermione from a disastrous alliance, so she offers to help Gregory win her over. But in the process, Lucy finds herself falling for Gregory herself.

Which of these is your personal best historical romance book ever?

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