The 14 Best New Romance Books to Add to Your Reading List in January 2023
There’s never been a better time to fall in love than in 2023, and your list of new romance books to read is here to prove it. Whether you’re searching for an enemies-to-lovers story, a there’s-only-one-bed-here mixup moment, or a summer fling-turned-relationship, 2023’s offering of romance books has got you covered.
Young love shines in new books from authors such as Talia Hibbert and Emma Lord. Romance heavyweights Tessa Bailey and Alexis Daria also throw new steamy stories into the mix. Emily Henry’s third romance novel following “Beach Read” and “People We Meet on Vacation” is also hotly anticipated for its rom-com energy and hijinks.
So open your hearts and prepare to fall in love with these romance books coming out in January 2023.
“Loathe to Love You” by Ali Hazelwood
Breakout author Ali Hazelwood offers readers the ultimate deep dive into her successful STEM-inist novellas with her collection “Loathe to Love You.” The three-in-one collection includes Hazelwood’s 2022 digital releases brought to print for the first time, which all share the beloved enemies-to-lovers theme. The collection consists of the roommates-to-lovers romance “Under One Roof”; “Stuck With You,” a fun play on the “locked in a room together” trope; and a wintery romance called “Below Zero.” The collection also boasts a new exclusive chapter for readers craving more of Hazelwood’s signature witty and charming novels. This collection will delight Hazelwood fans, new and old.
Release date: Jan. 3
“Back in a Spell” by Lana Harper
Hitch a broomstick ride back to the magical universe of The Witches of Thistle Grove with Harper’s third installment to the series, “Back in a Spell.” Pansexual witch Nineve Blackmoore is over being heartbroken after her fiancée abandoned her at the altar, so she takes to every modern witch’s go-to mode of finding love: dating apps. Her venture leads her to nonbinary Morty Gutierrez and a date Nineve looks forward to forgetting. Fate has other plans for the mismatched duo, though, as Morty soon develops their own powers and Nineve awakens to her own powers growing powerful beyond her control. The only explanation would be a magical connection the equivalent of marriage. Still, Nineve is convinced that’s not what’s happening – even if Morty seems to be the only person who truly sees her. Instead, they might be the first person to help her move on from the pressure of being a Blackmoore witch.
Release date: Jan. 3
“Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute” by Talia Hibbert
“Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute” marks Talia Hibbert’s side-splittingly hilarious rom-com YA debut. Celine Bangura has two goals: (1) gain an internship under the tutelage of her lawyer idol so she can flex on her absentee father and (2) avoid her former best friend Bradley Graeme after he dumped her to focus on being their school’s new hotshot soccer star. When Celine lands the internship, the last person she expects to see there, Bradley, has gained entrance too. During their internship experience set out in the wild, the pair stop making jabs at each other long enough to realize how much they’ve missed their friendship. Easing back into a friendship and potentially something more, Celine will have to overcome the insecurities left by her father to make space in her life for bigger, better things.
Release date: Jan. 3
“The Rom-Com Agenda” by Jayne Denker
Playfully using the tried and true methods of rom-com classics, Jayne Denker’s referential “The Rom-Com Agenda” is for anyone who’s ever wished their life could be a rom-com. Willow Cove, New York, has nothing left for Leah Keegan to stay for, and raising funds to get out of town is her main priority. When she encounters Eli, a man attempting to bounce back from a proposal rejection, she convinces herself the sparks she feels between them are all in her head and uses the guidance of her favorite rom-coms to transform Eli into a perfect leading man for his would-be fiancee. But going from dud to stud only further fuels the attraction between Leah and Eli, and wedding bells may be around the corner, but the question is who will be the couple that makes it to the altar. Release date: Jan. 10
“Lunar Love” by Lauren Kung Jessen
Lauren Kung Jessen’s “Lunar Love” delivers a rivals-to-lovers tale for astrology fans. Olivia Huang Christensen is convinced she can find love in the stars for anyone except herself, even as the new owner of her family’s Chinese zodiac–based matchmaking business. When she encounters Bennett O’Brien, the owner of ZodiaCupid, which takes her family’s business concept online, Olivia must prove her family’s tried and true methods beat Bennett’s digital ones. So, Olivia and Bennett make a deal: they’ll each find a match for each other, and whoever begins to catch real feelings loses. Upon meeting her match, Olivia is convinced she can win this deal; all she has to do is never admit that her business rival is the one who makes her feel like their love was written in the stars.
Release date: Jan. 10
“Exes and Os” by Amy Lea
No one loves a second chance romance more than bookstagrammer Tara Li Chen, the protagonist of Amy Lea’s second Influencer book, “Exes and O’s.” Convinced the trope will lead her to the true love of her life, Tara decides to give her exes a second chance, rekindling old relationships to see what new sparks may arise. Her roommate, Trevor, doesn’t see eye to eye with Tara when it comes to romance, but nonetheless becomes an ally in the ups and downs of revisiting former flames. During a livestream, audiences start to ship Trevor and Tara, forcing Tara to either continue down her beaten path toward her exes or give something brand new a chance.
“The Reunion” by Kayla Olson
Kayla Olson’s “The Reunion” begs the question: can former co-stars coming back together for a 20-year reunion resist the flame they lit as young starlets? Liv Latimer and Ransom Joel were beloved for their undeniable chemistry on screen as stars of the hit teen drama “Verge,” but many don’t know that the chemistry on screen was hard to resist IRL. Liv, never one for the spotlight, kept her feelings to herself, so the pair remained friends until a sudden fallout left their friendship fractured. Back on set together, Ransom is a movie star with the same old charm that makes falling into old routines feel too easy. But with social media chiming in with opinions on their dynamic and new castmates competing for their moment in the limelight, Liv and Ransom must decide between leaving what they had in the past or turning it into their new future.
Release date: Jan. 17
“A Guide to Being Just Friends” by Sophie Sullivan
“A Guide to Being Just Friends” by Sophie Sullivan makes friendship a surprising hurdle. For Hailey, the hardworking owner of Get By the Cup salad shop, and Wes, a son of a recent divorce who’s tired of dating, friendship should be easy. After a contentious first meeting, Wes makes an apology to Hailey. He soon discovers that despite his mantra of staying away from relationships, there’s something about Hailey he can’t help but want more of. And for Hailey, Wes provides warmth, but he’s also a distraction from working on her business. Staying just friends is more complicated than it looks.
“Make a Wish” by Helena Hunting
Author of “Meet Cute” Helena Hunting brings charm, wit, and second chance romance in “Make a Wish.” The most memorable experience Harley Spark has of her time as a nanny was with widower Gavin Rhodes and his daughter Peyton, until she almost kissed him. When Gavin quickly packed up his things and moved soon after their embarrassing moment, she took it as a sign and moved on to a new career. Nine years later, Gavin and Peyton walk back into her life, but this time it’s Gavin who sees Harley in a new light, especially around her new boyfriend. Getting their connection back on track hits a standstill when wounds of the past come back to bite, and their wish for a new chance at love may go down in flames. Release date: Jan. 24
“Begin Again” by Emma Lord
In Emma Lord’s sweet YA romance “Begin Again,” a first-year college student with a perfect plan must navigate her college experience when her plans fall through, and she finds her confidence shaken. Andie was disappointed when she received her rejection letter from Blue Ridge State, her dream school. When she gets the chance to transfer from her community college to Blue Ridge, it’s her chance to get her life plan back on track. Her seemingly grumpy RA Milo is the only person who seems to know the right things to say when she needs it, and as Andie grapples with huge life changes, she’ll learn there’s beauty in starting over.
Release date: Jan. 24
“Behind the Scenes” by Karelia Stetz-Waters
“Behind the Scenes” by Karelia Stetz-Waters delivers a hopeful, romantic tale of two women unsure of what love has in store for them. Rose Josten enjoys her life as a business consultant, even though she can sense the crash of a midlife crisis wave coming her way. Upon meeting filmmaker Ash, however, the once beloved safety of her predictable life is traded in for a heartstopping romance she only wants more and more of. Ash can’t deny how Rose makes her feel, but she isn’t over a romantic disaster in her past that left her feeling wary of falling head over heels for anyone else. As they work together to get Ash’s film financed, what’s happening off-screen is what to watch.
Release date: Jan. 31
“Reggie and Delilah’s Year of Falling” by Elise Bryant
From the author that brought readers “Happily Ever Afters” and “One True Loves,” Elise Bryant’s YA novel “Reggie and Delilah’s Year of Falling” tackles the struggle of being one’s true self. Becoming the star of a band is a new venture for 16-year-old Delilah, and she struggles with being at the forefront when she’d rather lay low in the background. Reggie loves everything nerd culture, especially D&D, but hides his passion from his family due to their judgment. Meeting on New Year’s Eve, Reggie and Delilah find a kindred spirit with one another, and fate continues to draw them together with each holiday. As their connection deepens, they begin to confront the masks they’ve put on in their real lives while hoping that they can be their authentic selves with one another.
Release date: Jan. 31
“Sorry, Bro” by Taleen Voskuni
Crackling with warmth and humor, Taleen Voskuni’s debut, “Sorry, Bro,” is an unmissable romance. Armenian American Nar just realized that, based on his proposal, she and her longtime boyfriend are not a match. With her mother’s list of new Armenian candidates in her pocket, Nar heads to Explore Armenia, a series of Armenian events fostering a love of her culture. Amid the tempting food and delightful experiences, Nar can’t seem to focus on any of the perfect men her mother picked out for her, finding herself focused on her beautiful new friend Erebuni instead. Their chemistry is undeniable, and Nar finally understands what it feels like to be loved and seen for who she is, but no one in her family knows she’s bisexual. Erebuni is all she’s ever wanted, but is Nar willing to risk upsetting her family’s expectations? Or will the only person who she lets down be herself?
Release date: Jan. 31