Inspired by Valentine’s Day and its sweet candy-coated, flower-scented, love-is-in-the-air qualities, we decided to take a deep dive into one of our most popular categories on Scribd: the romance genre. We were curious to dissect the data and learn more about what the most popular books were since last Valentine’s Day. Is your favorite book on this list? Here’s what we found.
Top 10 most-read romance titles on Scribd
The 10 books and audiobooks were the most popular romance titles on Scribd. In other words, if you haven’t read these books yet, this is the month to do it.
Constantly topping the charts, this novel about an aging Old Hollywood actress with a glamorous and mysterious past finally telling her life’s story to an unknown journalist is highly emotional. Told in a memoiristic style, you will leave convinced that Evelyn Hugo is a real person. (Just to reiterate: She’s not.)
“It Ends With Us” constantly tops the charts, despite coming out several years ago. In a lot of ways, it seems like a stereotypical sexy romance novel: The protagonist Lily is stuck choosing between a hot doctor named Ryle and her first love, Atlas (yes, you read every name correctly). But this romance novel shines above the rest for its real and poignant portrayal of cycles of abuse.
Rival co-workers take their games to an entirely different level in this remarkable debut that literally portrays the thin line between love and hate. Soon to be a movie starring Lucy Hale and Austin Stowell.
Lauren combines two romance tropes — enemies to lovers and fake dating — with charm and humor. Olive Torres and Ethan Thomas pretend to be newlyweds so they can go on a free honeymoon in Olive’s sister’s name after the rest of the wedding party gets sick. During this all-expenses-paid trip to Hawaii, the tides of hate turn into waves of love.
A science-based dating app pairs an analytical single mother with the founder of the app, someone she has met before — and dislikes. Once the two figure out why they dislike one another (surprise! It’s because of many similarities), they make their messy way to a new relationship. This book is cute and nerdy, and Lauren’s breezy prose makes it a delight to read.
Shonda Rhimes’ first series for Netflix is “Bridgerton,” based off of Julia Quinn’s beloved romance following the titular family. The first book starts off as Daphne Bridgerton enters a courtship with Duke Simon Basset. But it’s a sham — Simon just needs a fair lady to pretend to be his devoted lover so it looks like he’s playing by society’s rules.
The gist: Big-city girl meets small-town fisherman with a brief enemies-to-lovers phase before romance ensues. To say it’s a rom-com inspired by Schitt’s Creek might say it all. This is one of those books you read from start to finish in a day because you just can’t put it down.
It’s your typical heartbreak story: Boy meets girl, boy breaks girl’s heart, girl (who’s actually a witch) puts a curse on boy to teach him a lesson. OK, maybe not so typical, but a “hex” of a lot of fun. Sterling imparts humor and whimsy in this magical romance that keeps you glued to your seat — and wondering if the protagonists will find their way back to one another.
This queer time travel rom-com by the delightful mind behind hit “Red, White & Royal Blue,” is a feel-good read. Everybody’s gushing about this fun, romantic tale of true love on the subway stuck in a time loop between modern day Brooklyn and the punk rock ’70s. You’ll be longing for commute delays so you can keep on reading and rooting for August and Jane.
A woman and an airline pilot think they can have a detached, unemotional relationship based on sex with no strings attached. But, as we can all predict, they didn’t think things through and their arrangement implodes. Be warned: It’s one of those books that stays with you after you put it down.
For more reading recommendations, check out these lists from our Scribd editors.
The Best Romance Novels of 2021
These Lovable Curmudgeons Will Warm Your Heart
Rom-Coms That Make the Sweetest Valentines
Galentine’s Day With Your Favorite Gal Pals
The Best Relationship Advice for Happy Couples
About the Author: Sarah Sung
Sarah is the Editorial Director at Scribd who obsesses over content strategy and brand building, and has written lifestyle content for AFAR, San Francisco Chronicle, and Under Armour. In her spare time she teaches indoor cycling and consumes podcasts, audiobooks, and ebooks at all times of the day and night. Traveling and dining out are always high on her to-do list