I love reading, and I love a good romance, but I don’t love that most of the romantic novels I pick up tend to be a little too graphic for my taste. I prefer a good, clean romance that I can openly discuss afterwards with friend or my mom…or even one of my teenage daughters. PG romances are hard to find, so I asked a bunch of friends for recommendations of books that they’ve read and loved.
Here are the 15 good, clean romance novels that I collected. I’ve read a few, but the rest are now on my to-read list. Since I’ve been reading a ton while I workout at the gym, I’m hoping that I can cross several of these off my list in 2015.
Have you read any of these books? Better yet, do you have any family-friendly romantic stories that you could recommend? Add them in the comment section below. I’d love to add a few more to my list! Note: Amazon affiliate links used in this post.
Feel-good Romantic Novels
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Set in England in the early 19th century, Pride and Prejudice tells the story of Mr and Mrs Bennet’s five unmarried daughters after the rich and eligible Mr Bingley and his status-conscious friend, Mr Darcy, have moved into their neighborhood. While Bingley takes an immediate liking to the eldest Bennet daughter, Jane, Darcy has difficulty adapting to local society and repeatedly clashes with the second-eldest Bennet daughter, Elizabeth.
Remembering Isaac: The Wise and Joyful Potter of Niederbipp by Ben Benhunin
Jake, a soon to be college graduate stumbles upon an ad in an art magazine. The town of Niederbipp, Pennsylvania, is looking for a new potter to replace Isaac, the seventh potter in a long string of potters reaching back to 1717. For the past 8 years, Jake has dreamed of being a village potter. He applies for the job, despite his plans for the summer and to his surprise, is awarded the Pottery, an apartment and a vast collection of old pots. As Jake begins his work in the old studio, he becomes aware of a unique collection of mugs hanging from an overhead beam. These mugs hold the keys to unlocking Jake’s understanding of the man he has come to replace. With the help of his new friend Amy, Jake begins to piece together the secrets of life Isaac lived by and shared with all who knew him. Fall in love with Niederbipp and its people as they remember Isaac. Explore the complexity of human nature and the yearning we all have for love, hope, truth, purpose and especially joy. Discovering Isaac is a series of tales within interconnected tales that all grow from the nurturing wisdom and love of a simple man who truly understood the universal and eternal secrets that lead to a happy life.
Austenland by Shannon Hale
Jane is a young New York woman who can never seem to find the right man-perhaps because of her secret obsession with Mr. Darcy, as played by Colin Firth in the BBC adaptation of Pride and Predjudice. When a wealthy relative bequeaths her a trip to an English resort catering to Austen-obsessed women, however, Jane’s fantasies of meeting the perfect Regency-era gentleman suddenly become more real than she ever could have imagined. Is this total immersion in a fake Austenland enough to make Jane kick the Austen obsession for good, or could all her dreams actually culminate in a Mr. Darcy of her own?
Anyone who lived through the 1980s may find it impossible—inconceivable, even—to equate The Princess Bride with anything other than the sweet, celluloid romance of Westley and Buttercup, but the film is only a fraction of the ingenious storytelling you’ll find in these pages. Rich in character and satire, the novel is set in 1941 and framed cleverly as an “abridged” retelling of a centuries-old tale set in the fabled country of Florin that’s home to “Beasts of all natures and descriptions. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truths. Passions.”
Cotillion by Georgette Heyer
Young Kitty Charing stands to inherit a vast fortune from her irascible great-uncle Matthew–provided she marries one of her cousins. Kitty is not wholly adverse to the plan, if the right nephew proposes. Unfortunately, Kitty has set her heart on Jack Westruther, a confirmed rake, who seems to have no inclination to marry her anytime soon. In an effort to make Jack jealous, and to see a little more of the world than her isolated life on her great-uncle’s estate has afforded her, Kitty devises a plan. She convinces yet another of her cousins, the honorable Freddy Standen, to pretend to be engaged to her. Her plan would bring her to London on a visit to Freddy’s family and (hopefully) render the elusive Mr. Westruther madly jealous. Thus begins Cotillion, arguably the funniest, most charming of Georgette Heyer’s many delightful Regency romances.
Masquerade: a romantic comedy by Janette Rallison
When Clarissa takes a much needed job under slightly false pretenses, she doesn’t think it will be such a big deal. She may have told her movie-star boss that she was married but that shouldn’t matter. After all, she doesn’t want anything to do with men for a long, long time. It’s hard for a woman to keep up the masquerade when her boss is as handsome as Slade Jacobson and the job takes her to Hawaii with him. In between handling his whirlwind four-year-old daughter and dealing with a whole cast of Hollywood personalities, Clarissa has to keep a tight hold on her heart.
Intertwine by Nichole Van
In 2012, Emme Wilde can’t find the right guy. She wants to feel that swept-off-your-feet dizziness of true love. But so far, her dating life has come up short. Star Trek geek? Nice but too serious. Hippy artist? Cute but too vulnerable. Instead, Emme obsesses over the portrait of an unknown man in an old locket. Granted, a seriously dreamy guy with delicious, wind-swept hair she just itches to run her fingers through. But still. Dead men may be great listeners, but they are not exactly boyfriend material. Emme travels to England, determined to uncover his history and conquer the strong connection she feels.
In 1812, James Knight has given up finding the right woman. All he wants is someone to share his love of adventure. Instead, his life has become a Shakespearean drama. His brother languishes in a tragic star-crossed romance. His beloved sister clings to life, slowly dying of consumption. But then he finds a beautiful mystery woman, dripping wet and half-dead, beneath a tree on his estate. Now if he can uncover her history, perhaps adventure–and romance–will find him at last.
The Love Letter by Erica Matthews
Sabrina is thrilled to return to the island where she spent so many summers as a child. Here she can forget the episode that nearly got her kicked out of college. Tybee Island is the last place she expects to meet the one person who has intimate knowledge of the worst moment of her life. Meredith comes to the island for peace and quiet – two things he needs to complete his next bestseller. Unfortunately, his plan is rudely interrupted by the appearance of Sabrina. He can’t seem to elude this puzzling woman who is always in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Here’s Looking At You by Mhairi McFarlane
Anna Alessi – history expert, possessor of a lot of hair and an occasionally filthy mouth – seeks nice man for intelligent conversation and Harlequin romance moments. Despite the oddballs that keep turning up on her dates, Anna couldn’t be happier. As a 30-something with a job she loves, life has turned out better than she dared dream. However, things weren’t always this way, and her years spent as the butt of schoolyard jokes are ones she’d rather forget. So when James Fraser – the architect of Anna’s final humiliation at school – walks back into her life, her world is turned upside down. But James seems a changed man. Polite. Mature. Funny, even. People can change, right? So why does Anna feel like she’s a fool to trust him?
The Sky Is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson
Adrift after her sister Bailey’s sudden death, Lennie finds herself torn between quiet, seductive Toby—Bailey’s boyfriend who shares her grief—and Joe, the new boy in town who bursts with life and musical genius. Each offers Lennie something she desperately needs… though she knows if the two of them collide her whole world will explode. Join Lennie on this heartbreaking and hilarious journey of profound sorrow and mad love, as she makes colossal mistakes and colossal discoveries, as she traipses through band rooms and forest bedrooms and ultimately right into your heart.
The Trouble with Playing Cupid by Tamara Philip
One New Year’s Eve, shy singer, December Brown drunkenly texts her talk show host pal, Trace Randall, about her long time crush on the aloof actor, Tom Elmswood. Thinking the two celebrities would make a cute couple, he unwisely decides to play matchmaker… in front of a live studio audience. Things start to go downhill when Tom admits he’s never even heard of December before. Now what seemed like a sure fire hit quickly becomes a flop. Will these two lonely hearts ever make a love connection or has this cupid’s arrow missed its mark?
He Wants You Back by A.L. Jacobson
Clarity is often born by way of chaos and confusion. For some a lifetime’s worth and others, one specific event. What if the chance was given to rewrite a certain questioned choice in life? Maybe the particular moment where life went wrong? As a confused accident victim, Cassandra Jonas is trying desperately to get back to the life she knew. With constant changes to her own reality, doubt is left in the wake of even the simplest of choice. Her doctors think seclusion with limited visitors is the most productive way of healing from her injuries, both physical and mental. However, even when things start to fall back into place, she is met with skepticism and deferred answers to what actually happened. Love seems to be the only constant in her ever changing life. Losing him once was painful enough, but to blow a second chance because of uncertainty was deemed senseless. She needed Gabe. He could tie together all the loose ends and they could continue down their once broken path of a happily ever after. The two of them together was undeniably the one solid fact of her now wavering world.
Piecing together the past seems to be the easiest of tasks. Seeking validity for her recollections proves to be the much greater challenge. Strangers and acquaintances alike disorient her memories. Forcing the grip on her desired perceptions to tighten, in hopes of maintaining some sort of sanity. Through pain and pleasure, Cass climbs her way back to the present. Learning that the mind has the capability to construct individual versions of reality. Versions that however deeply believed, once proven false, struggle to survive.
Faithful by Kim Cash Tate
Cydney Sanders thought she knew God’s plan for her life. She’d marry, have kids, and then snap her body back into shape by doing Tae Bo. But she’s celebrating her fortieth birthday as the maid of honor at her little sister’s wedding…and still single. Now her life is suddenly complicated by the best man. He’s the opposite of what she wants in a husband…and yet, he keeps defying her expectations. Starting with a lavendar rose–symbolizing enchantment–each rose he sends her reflects his growing love for her.
American Girl on Saturn by Nikki Godwin
The summer after graduation is supposed to be that first real taste of freedom – but not for eighteen-year-old Chloe Branson. Just as that breeze of freedom is making its way into her galaxy, her secret-service-agent dad drops a meteor-sized bomb of bad news on her and her sisters. An attempt has been made on the lives of Canadian boyband, Spaceships Around Saturn, during their USA tour, and the guys have to go into hiding ASAP. The only problem? In the midst of the crisis and media frenzy, their dad volunteered to hide the guys…in their house.
Hatteras Girl by Alice J. Wisler
There are two things twenty-nine-year-old Jackie Donovan asks God for: an honest, wonderful man to marry, and to own a bed-and-breakfast in the Outer Banks region. In the meantime, Jackie works for Lighthouse Views magazine, writing articles about other local business owners, and intrepidly goes on the blind dates set up by her well-meaning but oh-so-clueless relatives.
There’s one specific property Jackie dreams of purchasing: the Bailey Place, a fabulous old home where Jackie spent many happy childhood afternoons, a place that has now fallen into disrepair because of its outrageous price tag. When Jackie meets handsome Davis Erickson, who holds the key to the Bailey Place, Jackie is sure God has answered both her prayers. But as Jackie learns some disturbing details about Davis’s past, she begins to question her own motivation. Will she risk her long-held dreams to find out the truth?
If you’re looking for other ideas to make your Valentine’s Day a little bit more special, I’m sharing a few ideas from my favorite bloggers.
- 7 Best Amish Romances for Valentine’s Day from In Our Spare Time
- 10 Romantic Movies for Guys from Upstate Ramblings
- Snuggle Up for Valentine’s Day Movie Night from Day by Day in Our World
- 15 Books About the Love of a Dog from Two Little Cavaliers
- Love in Unexpected Places Movies from How Was Your Day?
- Funny Valentine’s Day Books for Kids from My Kids Guide
- 15 Good Clean Romance Novels for Valentine’s Day from Better in Bulk (You’re here!)
- Family Valentine Movies from Views from the Ville
- Family Friendly Valentine’s Day Movies from Philzendia
- Quirky Love Stories from The Guavalicious Life
- Coming Soon… from Mom on the Side
- Romantic Board Games for Couples from Gaggle of Gamers
- Unexpectedly Romantic Movies for Date Night from Pretty Opinionated
- Romantic Movie Quotes from Style on Main
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