I love a wide variety of genres and characters, the more diverse the better. I’ve tried to organize them a bit so you can gravitate towards the ones that call out to you.
Tea at the End of the World by Atom Yang (M|M Romance)
When Herc finds himself attracted to his neighbor, who happens a Pytor, an astrophysicist that was jogging after a meteorite destroyed Herc’s car, an interesting slow burn happens. Then, of course, the end of the world. However, stick through this one until the end. It’s a good story with a lot of hope and even happiness.
Tikka Chance On Me by Suleikha Snyder (M|F Romance)
This book is sexy from beginning to end. It starts with a scene involving gulab jamun and gets hotter from there. Can’t recommend enough!
The book will stick with you long after you’re done reading it. Don’t be surprised if this becomes a comfort read.
The Wedding Setup by Sonali Dev (M|F Romance)
Don’t let the cover fool ya. What’s inside definitely counts. This is a second chance romance after the tragedy of losing someone they both cared about.
The tension is very good and the conflicts were very believable. It’s a great afternoon read.
Rare Danger by Beverly Jenkins (M|F Romance)
Love Ms. Bev! This book ticked all my boxes! Sexual tension, mystery, danger, big guys with big toys, smart women, men smart enough to know when to get out of a woman’s way.
If you’re looking for a cozy murder mystery with Black romance and noir flavors, Ms. Bev has it for you in this book.
The Temper Saga by Lila Mina (M|F|F Dark Romance)
This series, in a word is, intense. I’ve read three of the four books and I took a pause. I’ll pick the last one up soon, but definitely needed a fluffy something to lighten things up.
The main character is bisexual who becomes involve with a Japanese couple. There are power dynamics, BDSM, and Japanese spirits handing out curses, or cures, depending on your point of view. Great series for folks that like reading different cultural viewpoints on BDSM practices (though this is fiction, so please read it as such).
Empire of Lust by Rina Kent (M|F Dark Romance)
This was a book club recommendation. It’s the last in the Empire series. I’m not sure I’ll go back and read the others.
This is a second chance romance with an enemies to lovers trope tied together. The tension is good, and the scenes are hot, but I didn’t like the male main character very much. Too alpha male, and too abusive. But if that’s your thing, this series might be for you.
The Thalanian Dynasty by Katee Robert (M|M|F Romance)
Most of the books I’ve read from Katee Robert have been her contemporary fantasy series, or monster romance series.
This particular series was a special edition of the Lucy Eden book boxes. I spent a weekend reading the book and don’t regret a minute of it. There are a few more books in this series if you’re interested.
Urban Fantasy/Monster Romances
Alicia: His Troublesome Fate by Chencia C. Higgins (M|F Fantasy Rom)
Higgins hits all the genre notes with her Wolves of West Texas series. Each book follows a member of the West Texas pack which highlights the pack dynamics. If you like wolf shifter series, you can’t miss this one. Especially check it out if you’re looking for Black fantasy romances.
The Orc Prince Trilogy by Lionel Hart (M|M Fantasy Rom)
If you like trope filled high fantasy romance, this series is for you! I read through the whole series in one weekend and enjoyed it.
It’s got plots galore, and the series ends on a high note. Recommend for anyone into queer monster romances.
Monstrous Matches by Lillian Lark (Monster Rom)
While I’ve read every book in this series so far, my favorite thus far is Deceived by the Gargoyles. The cover is gorgeous, and it features a M|M|M|F group that features three gargoyles and one very clever witch with a very persistent evil ex. If you’re into monster romance you’ll want to keep an eye on this series.
Serafin’s Ghost by Josh Hunt (M|M Fantasy Rom)
I’ve followed Josh’s work on Tapas.io and I’m happy to see this published and out in the wider world. His whole motivation for writing this book was to poke big holes in the bad “kill the gays” trope. Featuring a bisexual ghost and a gay mage, its set in a euro-centric alternate world where magic is prevalent and familiars are common.
Dragon Queens by Kathleen de Plume (F|F Fantasy Rom)
Like stories about the princess being rescued from the menacing dragon? You’ll like this. If you’re into sapphic romances, you’ll like this even more. It’s a fun adventure with Princess Bride vibes and a satisfying romance.
Bees and Honey: A Swamp Monster Story by Victoria Weyland (M|F Rom)
This book puts you right in the swamps of Louisiana. The details of the citizens and the mystery of the swamp monster are classic southern comfort right down to eliminating the threat of gentrification.
Many of the characters are queer including the main character herself. This is another great Black fantasy romance to put on your TBR.
Something Between Us by D.T. Brandt (M|M Monster Rom)
I beta read for this story, and it’s a sweet queer romance that highlights how two folks from different worlds can find common ground and love. There’s even a transformation story in this one that I think a lot of folks will identify with. If you like merfolk, and urban fantasy, you’ll dig this book.
Siren’s Song (Mermaids of Astaeria Book 1) by Erin Ashley Tanner (M|F UF)
More merfolk story for you! This Black urban fantasy romance has many of the hallmarks of the classic mermaid genre, but also infuses some very clever world building as well as an interesting plot.
The Company of Fiends by Kathryn Moon (Monster Romance)
Monster polyamory is something Kathryn Moon specializes in. This focuses on a theater that was featured in the previous Tempting Monsters book – A Lady of Rooksgrave Manor. Very sexy from beginning to end with a whole variety of monsters involved. Lots of queer flavors in here too.
A Walrus & A Gentleman by Emmaline Strange (M|M Shifter Rom)
This book was a wonderful surprise. I snapped it up from a twitter post, and had no regrets. It’s a great story about an artist and the grumpy lighthouse keeper that hosts him. Oh and the lighthouse keeper also happens to be a local legend!
A Deal With a Demon Series by Katee Robert (Monster Romance)
I’m a bit obsessed with this series. Full disclosure, I’m on Katee’s patreon and subscribers at certain levels get early releases. In addition, Demon’s Bargain (#4 in the series) was released as part of a kickstarter of six novellas. I’m patiently waiting for The Gargoyle’s Captive that should be out sometime in 2023.
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
This book was a slow start for me. But once I was into it, especially since the story revolves around zombies, I couldn’t stop reading. This story features an African American woman as the main character. There’s a follow up I have on my TBR that should be just right for spooky season.
The Black God’s Drums by P. Djèlí Clark
If you’re into steampunk, fantasy, and sci-fi, this book is definitely for you. I’ve enjoyed reading it and have started looking for more steampunk fiction (Nisi Shawl’s Everfair is a great example). Features an African American woman as the main character.
An Easy Death by Charlaine Harris
I’ve been a fan of Charlaine Harris since her Sookie Stackhouse series. When this was presented to me, I was eager to read it. It’s a good book, but I do have to say it should have come with some content warnings. I do remember the Sookie Stackhouse books also being rather gory at times, but I was taken back by the on-page rape scene in this book. It might be a while before I pick up the next two in the series.
That’s it! Thanks for running through this list with me. I’m looking forward to keeping up more often now that I’m done publishing books for the year. I’m always reading, so if you have great book recommendations, feel free to comment below!