I focus on new releases in romance the rest of the week, so Throwback Thursdays revisit book recommendations from years past.
This week’s topic is unexpected roommates! When I put this list together originally, I remember being worried that I’d have enough good recs to fill the list… and then it started overflowing. Apparently this is a trope that works well for me, lol. The forced proximity and time spent together in roommates romances always seems to work for me, and there are a ton of different scenarios where it can happen.
Take a peek at the original list below – they were all great reads for me back in the day.
After reading a really great roommate romance this week, it got me thinking about how many truly outstanding unexpected roommate romances I’ve read, especially recently. Admittedly, I am a fake relationship romance lover, and it’s a common trope in those books, but there are so many instances where adding in that forced proximity produces combustible chemistry. It ratchets up the tension and changes the whole dynamic, forcing our couple to get closer than they intended.
When choosing books for this list, I actually had to stop myself from recommending more! The following 15 books on this list are all great romances that I’ve read and enjoyed. I’ve included the blurbs, the circumstances surrounding the roommate situation, as well as links to Amazon for easy addition to your Kindle.
Side note: I’ve reviewed 90% of these, and my reviews show up first or second on Amazon for at least half of them.
Loathe Thy Neighbor by Teagan Hunter
Roomie Reasoning: Frenemy neighbors become roommates when our hero accidentally sets fire to his apartment.
Don’t fall for your enemy…especially when he’s your new roommate.
Dean Evans is the worst.
Not only does the devil in disguise steal my pie on a regular basis, he also lives in the apartment right. Next. Door.
I see him all the time. At the mailboxes. In the elevator.
Every single morning.
It’s exhausting because he’s exhausting.
Now, after setting his apartment on fire, he’s my roommate…and he’s the worst at that too.
I don’t know what possessed me to let him stay with me. Pity, perhaps?
I do know that I won’t be falling for his charm.
Or that panty-dropping smirk.
His quick wit.
That body he works so hard for.
Nope. Not falling for any of it…least of all him.
There might be a fine line between love and hate, but I know exactly where I stand.
Rush by Deborah Bladon
Roomie Reasoning: Our heroine goes to stay in her brother’s apartment, not realizing that it’s actually owned by his boss.
RUSH, a hot new standalone from New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author, Deborah Bladon.
I met Case Abbott when I was stepping out of the shower.
I had a towel wrapped around me.
He had his phone in his hand ready to call the police.
I snuck into my brother’s Manhattan apartment so I could surprise him.
Except, I was the one who was surprised. Not only was my brother out of town, but he didn’t own the apartment.
His best friend, Case, did and he had plans for the night that didn’t include me.
After I packed up my things so I could check into a hotel, Case had a change of heart.
He told me I could stay in his guest room until my brother came back.
I should have been hurrying back to my life in Seattle.
Case was needed in California, where he lived most of the time.
But our attraction was undeniable.
The rush I felt when I was with him was addictive.
My gorgeous temporary roommate proposed that we cross the line with the mutual understanding that when my brother returned to New York, we’d go our separate ways.
We both knew there was a risk that someone would get hurt.
Neither of us could have predicted who that would be.
Real Fake Love by Pippa Grant
Roomie Reasoning: When they find themselves in a fake relationship, these near-strangers move in together to keep up the ruse.
If people have polar opposites, Luca Rossi is mine.
His butt is in the baseball hall of fame. Mine’s comfortably seated in the hall of lame.
When he’s not snagging fly balls out in center field, he’s modeling in shampoo commercials. I once jammed my own finger while stirring cookie dough, and sometimes I forget shampoo is a thing.
He’s a total cynic when it comes to love.
I make a living writing love stories.
But after my latest broken engagement (no, I don’t want to talk about how many times that’s happened), it’s clear he’s exactly the man I need.
If anyone can teach me to be the opposite of me, it’s him.
The first thing I want him to teach me?
How to not fall in love.
And as luck would have it, he’s in desperate need of a fake girlfriend to get a meddling grandmother off his back.
We couldn’t be more perfect together, because the last thing Luca Rossi will ever be is the next man to leave me at the altar.
Or will he?
Real Fake Love is a line drive straight to the heart featuring a grumpy athlete, a jilted bride, a fake relationship, and the world’s laziest cat. It stands alone and comes complete with sibling rivalry, the world’s most awkward shower scene, and a sweetly satisfying happily ever after.
Play to Win by Kelly Jamieson
Roomie Reasoning: When hockey royalty meets a server in need, he finds himself in for more than he bargained for.
After an injury forced Théo Wynn to give up professional hockey, he turned to his second love: numbers. Now, as the general manager of his grandfather’s NHL team, the Los Angeles Condors, Théo is dying to prove to the rest of his family—especially the brother who betrayed him—that he’s just as successful as the rest of them. If only Théo had a gorgeous woman on his arm to complete the picture. . . .
Lacey Olson needs to get out of Las Vegas right now, thanks to her no-good, crooked brother. When a handsome stranger who’s out partying with friends comes to her rescue in the cocktail lounge where she works, they strike up a conversation that leads to a crazy plan: her leaving with Théo for L.A. tomorrow. A few drinks later, the idea gets even crazier: a quickie marriage that works for both of them.
But back in California, Lacey immediately turns Théo’s precise, well-ordered life into one big beach party. And before long, she’s tempting him with her smart mouth, sexy body, and sunny charm. The last thing Théo needs is a real relationship to distract him. Because he only plays to win. . . .
Drive Me Wild by Melanie Harlow
Roomie Reasoning: When our heroine’s car breaks down, she finds herself staying with her sexy, broody mechanic.
When Blair Beaufort literally crashes into Bellamy Creek wearing a ball gown and a tiara, I should have towed her car, said goodnight, and sent her packing.
I’m a mechanic, not a hotel manager. I’ve got enough on my plate trying to keep my shop from going under, my overbearing mother off my back, and my baseball team in contention for the league championship. I don’t have time for a former debutante with zero street smarts and a cash flow problem, even if she is crazy beautiful.
Problem is, she’s stranded in my small town, and I’m hiding a protective streak underneath my grumpy exterior that runs deep. So I offer her a place to stay and keep my hands to myself.
For exactly one night.
If only she weren’t so gorgeous. So funny. So eager to please. She’s a disaster behind the wheel, but she drives me wild without even trying–at work, at home, in the back of my truck . . . I can’t get enough of the way she makes me feel.
But I know better than to think it can last. She wants a fairy tale, and I’m no prince.
So when it comes time for her to leave, there’s nothing I can do but let her go.
No matter how much it hurts to say goodbye.
Fake Wife by Stacey Lynn
Roomie Reasoning: After they get into a fender bender, two strangers strike a deal to start a marriage.
This marriage is strictly business . . . until the temptation gets way too real.
Corbin: I loved my grandma, but I don’t need her money. All I care about is keeping the house—the only place that’s ever felt like home. That, and screwing over my dad, who wants to turn the property into a mall. There’s only one catch: To receive my inheritance, I have to get married within six months. Me, the guy who’s never dated a girl for more than six minutes. Now I need to find a woman I can trust. So when I’m rear-ended by a Prius, I figure it’s a sign that I’m supposed to meet gorgeous, down-to-earth Teagan Monroe.
Teagan: First I lose my job. Then I come home and find out—in the most graphic way possible . . . yeah, that way—that my boyfriend is a cheating jerk. And then I speed off and nearly kill Portland’s sexiest bachelor. Corbin Lane should be pissed. Instead, he offers me more money than I’ve ever seen in my life to marry him and live together in a mansion for two years. No sex. No feelings. Just cash—enough to make all my dreams come true. Then we go and break all our rules . . . and I realize I’m falling in love with my fake fiancé.
New Jerk in Town by Sylvie Stewart
Roomie Reasoning: Former friends turned enemies-ish become roommates when our heroine’s motel room is not deemed up-to-par by the hero.
Surly, rude, selfish, and inconveniently attractive. Meet Milo Papatonis, the king of all jerks.
I’m not normally one to judge, but I’ve been down this particular road before and I can unequivocally say he’s earned his title. It’s not enough that Milo crushed my dreams when we were kids, but now I’m somehow being forced to dwell under the same roof with his ill-mannered ass. If he thinks his sexy shower noises and ovary-imploding smile can tempt me into forgetting, he’s nuts.
This situation is strictly business and blessedly temporary. Because my dreams are still out there waiting for me, and they won’t be found anywhere near this town—or this guy.
Jerks do nothing but break hearts, of that I’m certain. But I’ve been known to be wrong a time or two…
If you’ve read Then Again by Sylvie Stewart, you’ve met Jill, the hopeless flirt and younger sister to Jenna. Catch up with Jill as well as your friends from The Nerd Next Door in this fun, sexy, irresistible new addition to the Carolina Kisses series.
Revved to the Maxx by Melanie Moreland
Roomie Reasoning: Our heroine’s new job comes with room and board… which means living with the man she just had a one night stand with.
Maxx Reynolds needs help.
His shop, house, and life are all in a state of disarray.
In desperation, he turns to the internet to hire a new employee,
thinking it will make his life easier
What he expects is a fellow named Charly.
What he gets is a quirky, sassy, red-head named
Charlynn who runs circles around him.
And she’s all woman.
He can’t stand her.
He can’t keep his hands off her either.
One Hot Italian Summer by Karina Halle
Roomie Reasoning: When our heroine’s editor offers the use of her Italian villa, she doesn’t realize that it comes with a single dad and his adorable kid.
An author finds inspiration in Tuscany in the form of a hot Italian single dad…
This summer is going to be a scorcher.
A writer who’s blocked–I’m a total cliche.
Lucky for me, my agent has a cure that’s an even bigger stereotype–a month at her villa in Tuscany, with nothing to do but find my muse.
When he walks right in the front door, adorable son in tow, it feels like fate has finally done for me what it does for every other cliche’d girl I’ve seen in the movies. Except that he’s completely off-limits. In this case, business and pleasure can never mix.
Because Claudio is my agent’s ex.
Still, he’s smart, charming, and wickedly sexy, plus a great father to Vanni. He’s fast becoming the cure to all my writing woes. And it’s clear he wants me as much as I want him.
As the hot Italian summer wears on, it becomes harder and harder to resist. Succumbing to the heat even just one time could ruin my career.
Or he could be exactly what I need.
A NEW STANDALONE SINGLE DAD ROMANCE from the New York Times Bestselling author of A Nordic King and The Pact.
You Can Have Manhattan by P. Dangelico
Roomie Reasoning: When they reluctantly agree to enter into a marriage of convenience, these total opposites must work out their differences.
You are cordially invited to the worst wedding of the century.
Sydney Evans is no stranger to hard work. It’s the one constant in her life. And with no family or friends to speak of it’s been easy to pour everything she has into her career as general counsel for Blackstone Holdings.
She wants for nothing. Until her boss offers her a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. All she has to do in return is marry his good-for-nothing son.
Scott Blackstone used be a party whore. Pardon, party animal. He hasn’t been that guy in a long time though. Not since he moved to Wyoming, bought a failing cattle ranch, and turned it into a profitable business.
All is good. Until a phone call from his father threatens the quiet, simple life he’s built. Marry or lose everything. And to a woman who can’t stand him, no less. Well, Scott is not going down without a fight. He’s never going back to Manhattan. Not if he can help it.
Sleeper by Kayley Loring
Roomie Reasoning: A single dad hires his friend’s little sister to be his nanny, not realizing that she’s everything that’s been missing from his life.
SHANE MILLER SLEEP DIARY:
Went to bed at: Late.
How long it took to fall asleep: Forever. I have insomnia. Duh.
Number of caffeinated beverages you had consumed: Zero. Thanks for advising me to quit!
My stress level is off the charts.
I can’t sleep right on a normal day, and lately my days are filled with the best kind of chaos.
My ex-wife and husband number two are filming in Poland for three months,
so I’m turning down movie parts to focus on the most important role of my life—
impossibly charming and somewhat capable young single dad.
My son won’t stop asking questions.
My daughter won’t brush her teeth unless I sing her showtunes.
Our regular nanny quit.
The only person I could trust to hire as a temp nanny is my best friend’s sister.
If Mary Poppins and Bill Murray had a baby it would be Willa.
Fresh out of grad school and beautifully weird.
She hates my movies, and my kids adore her.
I couldn’t sleep last night because she wasn’t here.
Turns out I can’t sleep unless she’s in my house now.
Turns out she’s what’s been missing from my life all along.
If my friend had any idea what I want to do to his gorgeous troublemaker of a sister,
he would smother me with a pillow.
The chances of us succeeding as a couple are about as good as that little indie movie
that I made being a huge hit.
But it’s a chance I’m going to take.
Wild for You by Kendall Ryan
Roomie Reasoning: When a reclusive hockey player realizes that his teammate’s ex needs a place to stay, he finds himself agreeing to let her move in.
He’s growly. Grumpy. Stubborn.
And now, my new roommate.
Walking away from my disastrous last relationship was an easy decision, but moving in with a friend-of-a-friend hockey star who’s rarely home? Not quite as simple, because Grant makes me feel all kinds of things I’m not prepared for.
Protected. Desired. Unsteady.
• • •
She’s beautiful. Smart. Tempting.
And a little fragile.
I’ve never been anyone’s knight in shining armor, but when Ana needed a place to stay, it was easy to offer her a room with me.
Not so simple, though, is keeping my hands—or my mouth—to myself. And the night she crawls into my bed and shares her body with me? Heaven.
But she’s not looking for a relationship, and to my surprise, I find myself pissed off by that idea.
They say my heart is broken, that I’ll never settle down. I used to think that was true. Now, though? Hell, your guess is as good as mine.
First, she took my bed.
Then she took my heart.
Then she took my everything.
Your favorite hot jocks are back with an all new standalone novel. If you like sexy, confident men who know how to handle a stick (on and off the ice), and smart women who are strong enough to keep all those big egos in check, this series is for you!
Each book can be read as a complete standalone.
Marriage for One by Ella Maise
Roomie Reasoning: When our hero proposes a marriage of convenience, these near strangers and complete opposites slowly fall for each other.
Jack and I, we did everything backward. The day he lured me into his office-which was also the first day we met-he proposed. You’d think a guy who looked like him-a bit cold maybe, but still striking and very unattainable-would only ask the love of his life to marry him, right? You’d think he must be madly in love.
Nope. It was me he asked. A complete stranger who had never even heard of him. A stranger who had been dumped by her fiancé only weeks before. You’d think I’d laugh in his face, call him insane-and a few other names-then walk away as quickly as possible. Well…I did all those things except the walking away part.
It took him only minutes to talk me into a business deal…erm, I mean marriage, and only days for us to officially tie the knot. Happiest day of my life. Magical. Pop the champagne… Not. It was the worst day. Jack Hawthorne was nothing like what I’d imagined for myself.
I blamed him for my lapse in judgment. I blamed his eyes, the ocean blue eyes that looked straight into mine unapologetically, and that frown on his face I had no idea I would become so fascinated with in time.
It wasn’t long after he said I was the biggest mistake of his life that things started to change. No, he still didn’t talk much, but anyone can string a few words together. His actions spoke the loudest to me. And day after day my heart started to get a mind of its own.
One second he was no one. The next he became everything.
One second he was unattainable. The next he seemed to be completely mine.
One second I thought we were in love. The next it was still nothing but a lie.
After all, I was Rose and he was Jack. We were doomed from the very beginning with those names. Did you expect anything else?
Accidental Knight by Nicole Snow
Roomie Reasoning: Unbeknownst to our heroine, she just signed a marriage license to the sexy stranger living in the property she just inherited.
Accidentally wed to a screaming hot stranger.
I inherited a freaking husband.
Grandpa’s will was a shocker: huge fortune, gorgeous ranch, and the best horse ever.
The fine print? Marrying Mr. Grump-alicious.
The man who’s supposed to protect me from…what, exactly?
That’s what I hope to find out if Drake Larkin ever talks.
I know what I’m in for the first time his glance tears me open.
A broody enigma who’s large and in charge.
A mute who curls my toes when he barks a few words.
A silly, shameful, is-this-real-life crush I can’t afford.
Did I mention our pretend marriage-rodeo lasts six damn months?
Long enough to teach my heart cartwheels.
Time enough to seal this madness with a kiss.
Insane enough for secrets to slip – and sting.
Grandpa’s last wishes scare me. So do Drake’s real motives.
But it’s my beast of a “husband” who makes ridiculous seem right.
Have I found my knight?
Does love have a prayer when life throws us a dragon?
From Wall Street Journal bestselling author Nicole Snow – a mistake meant to be. One moody alpha slayer gives his all to rustle up the damsel of his dreams. Full length romance novel with a heartwarming Happily Ever After.
The Change Up by Meghan Quinn
Roomie Reasoning: Lifelong friends get to know each other in a whole new way when our heroine temporarily moves in.
BREAKING NEWS: The Bad Boy of Baseball, Maddox Paige, is totally and utterly whipped.
Okay, that might not be the headlines in the newspaper this morning, but it’s the reality of my current situation.
It all started a month ago when I received a call from my best friend, Kinsley. She got a new job in Chicago and needed a place to stay. I’ve known the girl since I was five, what harm would it be to have her stay at my place for a while?
Ha! Total disaster.
Now instead of going out every night with my teammates, I’m couch surfing and sketching endless photos of my best friend . . . but that’s the least of my concerns.
The disaster, you ask? I’m rapidly falling head over cleats in love with my best friend, my roommate, and my number one fan.
And she has no idea . . .
Want more romance recommendations? Check out some of my other lists!
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