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I Read 14 Romance Books So You Don't Have to

I wanted to read non-spice/clean romance books in February and talk about them to give other people who want to read clean romance books some recommendations. This is my story....(dun dun!)

In February an idea sprouted in my mind. An idea so crazy, so crazy that it would take someone equally as crazy to complete it; me. It was decided February 1st, I was going to read 14 romance books for February and report on it. I started off well reading Tweet Cute by Emma Lord, my favorite author. The book was so good it had me craving the grilled cheese from the book. The next book I read was horrible and I stopped reading 60 pages in. But the next one, Everyone Hates Kelsie Miller by Meredith Ireland, became one of my all-time favorite books. It had all you could ever need, enemies to lover’s trope and great character development. I continued my reading journey reading 3 more books after that. The 7th book of the month I knew was going to be a good one; To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han, my other favorite author. But something was changing in me. I looked in the mirror and I didn't even recognize myself anymore. Everywhere I went I started thinking in tropes; fake dating, friends to lovers, enemies to lovers, and my personal favorite; used to be friends but are now enemies and start fake dating and become lover’s trope. I was going to my church groups and playing matchmaker in my mind. I was becoming nervous around the men my age and started daydreaming. Could it be? Was I becoming......romantic?! Was God Himself taking this hardened heart and....softening it? Was He humbling me by making me a nervous wreck around cute guys?! I continued on. Nothing was going to stop me. Next up I had sports romance books; The Cheat Cheet by Sarah Adams and The Phony Valentine by Courtney Walsh. It was too good to give up now. It only fed into my romanticism more. Was I going to have a sports romance? What would my love interest play? Basketball? Football? Baseball? The thought kept me up at night. I was starting to lose my mind. I was afraid I was going to start developing heart eyes! I shuddered at the thought. I had to get out of this was time. The most important day of the month. It was Valentine's Day. I had to read a Valentines book. I read So This Is Love by Tracy Andreen who also wrote So This Is Christmas. I figured I would like it but....I loved it. I absolutely loved it. There was no way, 10 books in, I was going to end now. I read The Do Over by Lynn Painter, it was not as good as her book Better Than the Movies if that's what you're wondering. That's all I'll say....for now anyways. If I knew things would go downhill from here maybe I would have stopped but at this point, I came so far I couldn't give up now. The romanticism was wearing off. I was coming back from my fantasies, mostly because I was stressed that all this time went by, and I was a week away from my birthday and had no plans for it. But I also had to stop getting so nervous around guys that I was unable to speak. How am I supposed to have a romance if I can't even talk to a guy?! I had to just finish this once and for all. So, I read the last 3 books on my list. Unfortunately, the last 3 books I read were a bust, so there's that. But here we are. I did it. I read 14 romance books in the month of February. And here they are....

5/5 Stars I don’t think Emma Lord has the ability to write anything that is not the greatest most cutest story I’ve ever read. I think if she wrote a story from the perspective of a grilled cheese I would read it. I’ve now started to rate her books by bath and bodywork’s scents. I would say this one is the Birthday Cake candle.

1/5 Stars I got about 60 pages in and looked at some reviews and I just don’t see me continuing. As far as I can tell this novel is supposed to represent a Christian relationship in a rom com sort of way. I just didn't like the main character’s views on finding a man. I wasn’t a fan of the fact that she talked more to her bff about her relationship issues than talking to her boyfriend! I got to a point I couldn’t do it anymore when her tactic to bring up waiting until marriage was to charm and seduce him. She literally threw herself at him because she was mad at him and then talked about waiting until marriage? I just felt very confused with this book. The vibe was cute but the rest I couldn't get past. Hoping a different book from this author I’ll relate to more, this one just wasn’t it for me

5/5 Stars I loved this teen book from start to finish. There was not a moment where I lost interest and it had some funny moments. The character development was on point. I loved the mix of romance and friendship. It was non spice romance, only kissing, and it was so adorable but never cheesy. The ending just made it even better. It really reminded me of a mix between Better Than The Movies and Tweet Cute. Definitely going to stay one of my all time favorite romances

5/5 Stars loved this. I read most of it in one sitting. I loved the story being based around the sisters but also had romance as well. It was centered around the main character who went through health struggles want to go out and travel and experience life. The ending just hit me and I was in tears. This is what I hope a Christian book to be, but it is so relate-able for anyone. Especially for those struggling with health conditions!

2/5 Stars DNF got about 60 pages in. Just was not feeling the characters and wasn’t focusing enough on it to pay attention to what was happening with the time jumps

3/5 Stars This was good! It was very small town romance vibes which was a nice change for me. I felt more into the first half, it felt faster paced and then I was starting to feel like I was ready to be done the last 100 pages. But it was definitely a nice fun easy read. I really liked the pastor and his wisdom and encouragement portrayed in the book. Definitely want to read the others in the series.

3.5/5 Stars This feels like a comfort book. I read it before and it’s a great easy read. Sometimes it was frustrating. Like Peter would be like you’re hard to get Lara Jean it’s like cause ya girl doesn't know how to communicate! But I really liked Peter and I love the family dynamic.

3/5 Stars *Spoilers* This was cute. With them being friends I expected more reasons why they loved each other instead of it feeling like it was mostly centered around their attraction and the physical appearance. But I loved that it was still a low spice romance and I loved how they treated each other. I loved that Nathan wanted to wait until marriage for her. I also liked that there was a warning for the panic attack at the beginning of the book and that the moment in the book wasn’t too intense. Overall enjoyed the book, again I think what made me not over the top love it was how much the focus on their feelings was more based on attraction, otherwise they were so sweet to each other and it was a great romance novel

5/5 Stars Loved this one! Loved it even more than So This is Christmas. I really liked the characters and their relationship together. Loved this series and how they were holiday themed. Definitely becoming a favorite author for me!

5/5 Stars I think this is one of my favorite romances I’ve read. I love how the fake romance was done and how it ended. The characters and the whole thing was so sweet. I loved how clean the book was too, nothing spicy and also liked that their was no language! An adult book but considering how clean it was I think young adults would enjoy it too.

2.75/5 Stars This was like a 2.75 for me. Honestly I felt like I never really connected with it. I really liked the ending. But I wish Emilie had more of a character development than she did. Better Than The Movies was so great so I think I had higher hopes for this one, so it was a lower rating than I expected.

2/5 Stars I got about halfway through. The first 70 pages were so focused around the hot tub video. I felt like it wasn't really going anywhere. I stopped when the lady she meets with tells her her body is a temple and that not just any guy can approach the throne to worship. It just was not my taste. I still love Jenny Han though.

1/5 Stars DNF like 80 pages in. First I was disappointed this was set in Rome, Kentucky not Rome, Italy so that was a vibe kill. The dude was too grumpy for me. It was too lusty for me at some parts. I loved The Cheat Sheet but this one was just not keeping my attention.

2/5 Stars This started off pretty strong I was into it. But it started to feel kind of boring. I thought there’d be more excitement with her being a bodyguard. Then towards the end she recommended he try to control his dreams through lucid dreaming and talk to his dead brother. I am not into talking to the dead so I put this down.

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