If you read my last blog, you are already aware that I do not like Valentine’s Day. I am a Valentine’s Day Scrooge. You’d think my husband would be thrilled by this – one less holiday to remember and no need to buy me candy or jewelry. For some reason, he takes offense. It’s kind of cute that he wants to be romantic. But not cute enough to make me like Valentine’s Day.

Instead, I prefer to celebrate the little known holiday of “Love Day.” Stemming from The Simpsons, it comes the day after Valentine’s Day, conveniently when all the Valentine’s chocolate is on sale. It’s a day to tell all your loved ones how much you care about them and shun the Hallmark-created pink and red explosion that is February 14th.

On Love Day, you wear the color you love the most. You eat the food you love the most. You hang out with the people you love the most. And, you can read books with romance in them again. Never heard of it? Well, that makes sense since my husband and I love The Simpsons and because of my disdain for Valentine’s Day and the fact that he kind of likes Valentine’s Day. Call it a compromise. If you’d like to celebrate our holiday, please feel free. It’s for everyone.

In honor of Love Day (not Valentine’s day), here are some of my favorite Love Day books, with an extra helping of cheesy romance.

Twilight (Book 3 – Eclipse)

Yep, I’m a Twi-lover and book 3 is my favorite in the twilight series. It’s full of angsty romance. Bella and Edward forever! (I guess kind of literally since they’re vampires.)

“Look after my heart – I’ve left it with you.”

Atonement

This book about star-crossed lovers is a not just a beautiful story but beautifully written. I cared about Cecilia and Robbie’s love so much that wanted to stay fooled at the end and believe the lie. I’m sure that was intentional by the crafty author Mr. McEwan.

“…falling in love could be achieved in a single word—a glance.”

Romeo and Juliet

I am a sucker for Shakespeare. And R&J is the most iconic of his stories for a reason. In fact, this story has inspired many tales like it, my own book included (The Travelers). The idea of warring families that tear two lovers apart is timeless.

“Did my heart love till now? forswear it, sight! For I ne’er saw true beauty till this night.”

Dead to the World – Sookie Stackhouse Book 4

If you are unfamiliar with the Sookie Stackhouse novels or the show it inspired, True Blood, let me introduce you to your next obsession. There are nearly a dozen books in this series and I think I read them all in a matter of months. It was a joke in my house that I spent more money on Sookie Stackhouse books than we spent on groceries. Of course, with all series, I have a favorite, which is book 4, the one where Sookie and Eric first get together – super swoon. [spoiler alert] I’m still angry they didn’t end up together in the books and the show!

“You know I love you more when you’re cold and heartless.”

Outlander

I got hooked on this book thanks to Book Club. It’s not something I would normally read. (Thank you Wendy). But the allure of the flame-haired Jamie and the spunky Claire’s love is honestly kind of irresistible. I even started watching the show, which lived up pretty well to the my bookish expectations.

“Oh, aye, Sassenach. I am your master . . . and you’re mine. Seems I canna possess your soul without losing my own.”

Wuthering Heights

Oh the Bronte sisters, they know how to create characters that we don’t really like but we still want them to find love or keep love or just stop being so selfish and stupid. Alas, that is not to be usually and yet they still seem to embody an old world romantic ideal that couldn’t even be achieved 150 years ago. But we’re still trying. Wuthering Heights is my favorite effort.

“He’s more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.”

Pride and Prejudice

A list of my favorite romantic novels could not be complete without Jane Austen. While I love all of her novels and I like some of the lesser appreciated ones better than most (Mansfield Park), still the classic Pride and Prejudice is probably my favorite. It will always be Mr. Darcy for me. Ahh, there I go swooning again.

“You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”

Happy Love Day!

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