7 best holiday romance novels of 2021


Of all the nice things that come with the holiday season, one of our favorites is the transport of new holiday-themed romantic comedy books that have appeared.

Yes, just like a lot of holiday TV dramas, a lot of these novels can come with a heavy dose of cheese, but there are also a lot of high-quality page-turners in the mix. We’ve combed through the 2021 readings to find seven worth adding to your vacation TBR list.

So, brew your cup of cocoa and a Christmas cookie and get ready to pass out.

If you love “Gilmore Girls”, “The Parent Trap” and “The Great British Bake Off”, chances are you’ll love this cozy vacation romantic comedy.

Told in a 12 Days Until Christmas style with a chapter for each day, it follows twins Charlie and Cass who are eager to escape their own lives and pull off a classic twin switcheroo. Just when they think a few things can go wrong, things get even more interesting when Jake and Miguel step on the scene.

In 2020 Jenny Bayliss captured our holiday hearts with her debut The twelve dates of Christmas. A year later, she created another adorable romantic comedy set in a small seaside town.

After her marriage ends, former restaurateur Annie takes the opportunity to make a fresh start as a house sitter at charming Willow Bay. Everyone is delighted with his arrival, except for the owner’s handsome nephew.

If you like the warm atmosphere and slow-to-build romance with a touch of humor, this is it.

Trisha Ashley is a master storyteller when it comes to cozy, warm, slightly humorous romantic comedies. And in it, she weaves her story with threads of holiday magic.

This story takes readers to Mitras Castle in the remote highlands of Northumberland. We were charmed by the cast of characters and the atmospheric setting. And some reviewers rave about the fact that despite being 500 pages long, they got through it in a day or two.

Like wrapping yourself in your favorite winter blanket, Viola Shipman creates a tale that envelops readers in a story of second chances, healing, humor, and lots of snow, obviously. This is the author’s first Christmas novel, and many reviews are raving – with one claiming this Hallmark-like story is the author’s best work to date.

It follows Sonny, 50, a SoCal meteorologist whose job has just been replaced by virtual technology. She reluctantly returns home to northern Michigan, a place that harbors memories she’d rather run away from, and tries to rebuild her career by covering all possible winter events in a small town.

This is a fast-paced Harlequin romance novel with a Christmas twist, well-drawn characters and plenty of super steamy scenes.

The story follows Nessa, an emergency room nurse who travels to Rose Bend – a quintessential New England Christmas town – for the holidays with her young stepsister. They both mourn the loss of their parents, and while Nessa would rather not be in a place that looks like Santa’s workshop, it was their late father’s wish that they spend the holidays together. When a sturdy and handsome stranger walks into the inn with a stack of wreaths, the temperature seems to rise.

Set in charming London backdrop, this novel has everything we love about romantic comedies, plus that Netflix holiday movie feel (we’ll be looking for this one next year, Netflix!).

He follows Victoria and Oliver, who claim to be in a relationship. He wants to cheat on his family. She wants to present her clothing designs at the grand opening of the new department store that will open on the road – her competitor and her family empire. But soon their fake relationship escalates into something else.

Rachel is Jewish… and secretly loves Christmas. She hid over 200 porcelain Santa Claus figurines and her career as a Christmas novelist from her family for a decade.

While looking for inspiration for her next project, she is surprised to find it not in the Christmas sparkle, but in the magic of the Matzah Ball. This laughing, witty, and thoughtful read features a chronically ill main character navigating vacation, life, and love.

Naomi Farr is a book editor and writer at Greatist. She likes to focus on everything related to books, beauty, wellness and mental health. She is also a fantasy writer and YA bookseller. You can find her (and her cat) @avioletlife.


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