Dewey love romances? You know we do! The only thing Bookish enjoys more than a good romance is a good romance with a librarian protagonist. Adriana Herrera’s debut fits the bill perfectly. American Dreamer follows Nesto, the owner of an Afro-Caribbean food truck, to New York City where he falls in love with Jude, a children’s librarian. To celebrate the book’s release, we asked Herrera to share some of her favorite librarian-led love stories. If you’re overdue for a fine read, you’ll find the perfect book below.
I am so excited to be sharing some awesome romances featuring librarian protagonists with Bookish readers today. My debut novel, American Dreamer, is a M/M romance where a Dominican food truck chef falls hard for a children’s librarian who is passionate and dedicated to his work. Books and food are basically my two favorite things. Recently there have been more diverse foodie romances out there, but I wish there were more romances starring librarians, too. I especially want to see more with diverse characters and more written by authors of color. That being said, I did come up with a list of some delicious options for those who want more book-peddling lovebirds in their romance.
This is a sweet romance that is absolutely brimming with Latinx culture and family. Librarian Rosa Fernandez values steadiness and tries not to get swept away by her passions too often. She’s been cautious about indulging her feelings for Jeremy Taylor, but eventually she decides she can’t resist his charm. I love this series for its portrayal of the strong bonds between sisters, and also the true-to-life way in which relationships are rendered. Oliveras’ characters are such good people and they love so well. I feel right at home in the world she creates.
This six-book series is adorable, and each installment focuses on librarians. I love this series for its fun banter between protagonists, great secondary characters, incredibly sweet romances, and the bounty of body-positive plus size-heroines. Olivia Dade writes strong women who love themselves and their bodies unapologetically. This is something I wish we saw more in romance, which makes this series a favorite in more ways than one.
This one is soapish y’all and HAWT! Small town librarian Sophie Heyer gets tangled up with bad boy biker Alex Bishop, who turns out to be the son of the man who Sophie’s mom ran off with. The last thing Sophie wants is to get involved with a guy who could make a mess of her life. But the chemistry between them is hotter than Hades, and once they start they can’t stay away. I like a story where a woman gets to have her pleasure just like she wants it, and I appreciate a hero who is more than happy to oblige. There is a lot more to this story than the sex, though. Drama aside, the family relationships are complex and emotional. All in all it’s a very satisfying romance.
This M/M historical romance is solidly one of my all-time favorites. Technically the hero, Silas, is a bookseller, but I still had to include this novel on this list. I don’t think I’ve read another romance that is based on a shared love of books like that of Silas and Dominic. I also don’t think I’ve read a novel that makes the romance itself blossom from that common passion like this story does. Silas is a bookshop owner in the dodgier part of London, but he is also known for the seditious pamphlets he puts out condemning the disgraceful way in which the monarchy oppresses the poor. Dominic works for the monarch, which complicates things. This romance has some pretty intense BDSM elements to it, nevertheless it is incredibly hot and it is probably one of the smartest and most compelling romances I’ve read. It’s truly fantastic.
Inheritance by Katrina Jackson
This short erotic romance takes place in the small southern town of Sea Port where Jackson has set a few other delightful and very steamy stories. This one is about Lorraine Freeman, a librarian who leaves the hustle and bustle of city life to try her luck in this “middle-of-nowhere” little town. There Lorraine meets Jonas, who’s grappling with the death of his father and also looking for his own fresh start. Lorraine and Jonas’ romance is steamy and moves fast, but Katrina Jackson manages to render a layered story about moving on and finding home. This small town has a lot of diverse and very sexy people, and the stories are sweet as they are steamy.
This is an interracial small-town romance between Ressa, a children’s librarian, and Trey, a widower and single dad raising his little boy on his own. Trey’s still struggling with the grief and guilt from his wife’s death and Ressa has her own troubles. Things are too complicated for the relationship to work, it seems, until a meeting at a book convention pushes them together and makes the chemistry between them impossible to deny. Trey has a lot of baggage, and at times the reader will wish he would just get it together. Overall, I enjoyed the story, the passion both protagonists had for books, and the adorable kiddos.
Equal parts sweet and hella hot, this is a holiday contemporary M/M romance. Arthur, a grumpy handyman, and Gabriel, the shy and tightly wound small-town librarian, are forced to work together for the big library Christmas fundraiser. Neither one is very keen on the idea, but soon sparks start to fly. This is a really sweet holiday romance that brings two very different people together. The secondary characters are fabulous, and Cullinan brings the small town to life with her eccentric meddling-but-loving townies. I especially loved Arthur’s family and how warmly they brought Gabriel into their fold. This romance is the very definition of naughty and nice.
Adriana Herrera was born and raised in the Caribbean, but for the last fifteen years has let her job (and her spouse) take her all over the world. She loves writing stories about people who look and sound like her people, getting unapologetic happy endings. When’s she not dreaming up love stories, planning logistically complex vacations with her family or hunting for discount Broadway tickets, she’s a social worker in New York City, working with survivors of domestic and sexual violence.