The Best Forbidden Romance Books - 12 Forbidden Love Books you have to know
Updated: Jan 3
Many wish to escape from boring, repetitive lives and live out something truly exhilarating, magical, and daring.
Book-lovers know this best: they pick out a cover from their pile or head to the local book store or library.
There's no other genre that provides that escape like romance novels.
Filled with blushing, intense stares, and the occasional gasping, romance novels have all we need to fuel our dreams, day and night.
If you're looking to add some more fuel to the fire, we have just the thing for you. We've put together a list of the best Forbidden Romance Books on the market so that you know exactly which title and author to pop into your search bar.
What are Forbidden Romance Books?
What exactly makes romance novels "forbidden romance" or "forbidden love" novels?
For starters, they have all the makings of the perfect romance stories, including an explanation for how the characters meet, a series of problems that lead to the big climax (wink!), and an ending that leaves us feeling satisfied, yet hungry for more.
On top of these classic tropes that make up the genre, forbidden love stories add a little more spice to the typical conflicts. Romeo and Juliet, while a classic example of forbidden love, would blush at modern novels that address:
Relationships with age gaps
Love between step-siblings or relatives
Romance between gangs, factions, and other enemy parties
Forbidden romance spans across genres as well. Many sci-fi stories, fantasy novels, and suspense books also include forbidden romance storylines within their pages.
We wanted to find a book for everyone, so we've done our best to pull in a diverse collection.
So without further ado: go through the list and pick your personal top pick among this special selection of Forbidden romance Books!
#1 Forbidden: A Tragic Sibling Romance
Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma is not for the faint of heart.
At a young age, Lochan and Maya had to step in for their neglectful parents to take care of their younger siblings. As de facto parents of the household, they've grown together a bit too close.
Tragedy, stress, and a lack of childhood have fueled a toxic romance between them. They know they can't go on like this, but they understand and support each other so completely. Is it possible that anyone else could fulfill their needs?
Anyone who loves a gripping and realistic read, twisted with dark undertones of the worst parts of life, will love this forbidden romance. You'll read this book from cover to cover, careening to an explosive ending.
#2 From Blood and Ash: For Fantasy Lovers
From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout is the first book in the Blood and Ash series.
It introduces a world where the fate of society rests upon one young girl's shoulders and depends on her isolation. Forbidden from making eye contact, touching, and speaking, the Maiden is crushed by solitude and unrequited desires.
Enter: the man charged with the task to guard her and ensure this isolation continues. Hawke, honor-bound to protect her path towards the Ascension, suddenly becomes a source of temptation and longing.
Anyone who loves the push and pulls of unrequited love, mixed with the fate of humanity, will dive right into this series. This book, and the entire series, is filled with action and steamy romance that will satisfy any fantasy-romance fan.
#3 Red, White, and Royal Blue: An LGBT Story
Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston will satisfy any lover of political dynamics and LGBT love stories.
In this novel, American political royalty Alex Claremon-Diaz has everything going for him as the son of the U.S. President. Despite his publicity team's requests, he does not get along very well with the royalty across the pond.
To smooth relations between the political families heading the U.S. and the U.K., Alex is forced to be friendly with Prince Henry. It isn't long before their fake friendship turns into romance.
This novel has won several awards and hit the NYT best-seller list immediately. With a mix of wit, charm, and steam, modern love story-enthusiasts will eat this book up.
#4 Lessons in Corruption: Hot For Teacher?
Lessons in Corruption by Giana Darling mixes criminals with a forbidden student-teacher love story.
It all starts when a prim and proper teacher meets a sexy young motorcycle rider in a grocery store's parking lot. They nearly have a one-night stand.
Later, she realizes that the same almost-lover is now an 18-year old student in her class. Further, she finds out that he's the son of a notorious criminal.
Do you love edge-of-your-seat romances combined with the threat of injury and death to the heroine? Do you enjoy a mild age gap and student-teacher sexual tension? This novel is for you!
#5 53 Letters For My Lover: 3-Decade Romance
53 Letters For My Lover by Leylah Attar could be just the long read you're looking for.
In this romance novel that spans three decades, we meet a perfect mother in her thirties and an untamed college student who collide. Spoiler alert: They share more than just a birthday.
Shayda tries to swallow her dreams and desires to continue her responsibilities as a wife and a mother. The burn to fully indulge in a romantic relationship with Troy, however, is just too much.
In this nearly-400 page read, you can explore themes of passion, family life, and betrayal all while fulfilling your desires for a steamy romance.
#6 Birthday Girl: For Crushing On Your Boyfriend's Dad
Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas follows a girl desperate for a place to live and a man torn by his loyalty to his son. In this novel, Jordan moves into her boyfriend's parents' home and slowly realizes that she's more attracted to his father, Pike.
Pike and Jordan share their perspectives throughout the novel, battling their desires to ignore the 20 year age gap and issues of loyalty and fidelity. The longer Jordan and her boyfriend live there, the more Jordan and Pike's attraction grows to the breaking point.
Straight from an NYT best-selling author, this book will have you dying to see the aftermath. We know you can't wait to pick up this novel and find out if they break their responsibilities to be together!
#7 The Hating Game: For Your Work Spouse
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne brings forbidden love and enemies-to-lovers tropes to the workplace.
Lucy Hutton, a highly-competitive and ambitious employee, is always fighting to triumph over her coworker Joshua in everything. In a hating-friendship, rife with work-related games, Lucy and Joshua meet their ultimate challenge.
When a big promotion comes up at work, Lucy will have to either become Joshua's boss or resign from the job. All this hating and competition has got them a little too worked up, though, as Lucy finds herself having steamy dreams about Joshua.
What will happen when the game is over? Will one of them be the other's boss, and will this fragile romance fall apart? Full of humor, tension, and relatable situations, The Hating Game will keep any workplace-romance lover gripped until the end.
#8 The Museum of Innocence: Unhappy Ending
The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk is set in 1975 Istanbul.
Children of two well-known families, Kemal and Sibel, are betrothed. Kemal, however, has his eyes set on Fusun, a girl well below his station. Once they've broken the rules of virginity and class, Kemal spends years chasing after the love they had before Fusun marries another.
Kemal spends his time in lovelorn creating a shrine to their love, consisting of objects that remind him of what used to be. This novel is for anyone who enjoys love set in the past against a sociopolitical backdrop.
It will also leave you yearning for what was lost, right alongside Kemal.
#9 The Sweetest Oblivion: For Mob-Enthusiasts
The Sweetest Oblivion by Danielle Lori, starting the Made series, tackles the New York underworld of organized crime and infidelity.
Elena's sister is engaged to Nicholas Russo, a Made Man and known cheater. Elena, however, cannot help but find herself dangerously attracted to him.
Dabbling in the world of organized crime is dangerous enough, but Elena also risks ruining her relationship with her sister and destroying her own reputation. Elena, known by friends and family as sweet and innocent, is now finding her taste for darkness.
Anyone who enjoys a good story about a good girl gone bad, especially in the context of the mafia, will love this forbidden love book.
Are you into Mafia Romance Books? Then there is no way to miss out Top Selection of the Best Mafia Romance Books of all time!
#10 The Saint: A Priest Gone Bad
The Saint by Tiffany Reisz takes forbidden love to levels that most of us hesitate to go.
The first of many forbidden love books, The Saint follows Eleanor as she rebels from the Church and her mother's devotion, claiming she'll never step foot in a church again. Not long after, Eleanor catches a glimpse of a dreamy and charismatic priest, Father Soren Stearns.
Their relationship blooms as Eleanor attends daily mass just to get close to him and longs for him every second they're separated. Father Soren soon opens up to her, revealing his deepest desires and secrets.
Religion can be a sensitive subject for many, but if you're dying to fulfill your curiosities about what happens when a priest crosses the boundaries of celibacy, this book is for you.
#11 Slave to Sensation: Some Animal Love
Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh introduces two new races of living beings, the Psy and the changelings.
The Psy are forbidden from emotion, bound to stay fully intellectuals for their entire existence. The changelings, on the other hand, are emotional beings who can change their form into animals.
What happens when a Psy and a changeling feel a spark between them? Sascha, a Psy, will find herself stuck in a forbidden romance with Lucas, a leopard changeling. This love is set against the backdrop of violent unrest between the two races, so crossing the boundaries could mean danger and even death.
If you're excited to learn what it's like to give in to your more primal instincts, reading about the romance between Lucas and Sascha is for you. Nalini provides a suspenseful love story full of depth and meaning, but you'll also get everything you desire from your typical romance novel, too..
#12 American King: Modern King Arthur Story
American King by Sierra Simone is the groundbreaking final book of the New Camelot trilogy.
Throughout the trilogy, Simone weaves an enchanting tale of King Arthur in the modern era, full of explicit romance within a love triangle. If you're looking for the next addition to your pile of erotic novels, this one is for you.
The series begins with Greer's perspective, but switches to the other characters throughout the series in order to retell the age-old tale of King Arthur. Ash, Embry, and Greer are locked in a love triangle against the backdrop of politics, dark secrets, and lies.
In this final book, the trio turns on each other in a run for the presidential office. All the twists and turns of lust and jealousy throughout the series are unwound and exposed in this final wrap-up. Lovers of mythological retellings and erotic novels cannot miss this.
Find Your Perfect Forbidden Love Book
We hope you've found one or more additions to your pile of forbidden romance books. If you've never read forbidden love books before, then this list is a perfect place to start. You'll never know what you like until you dive in and try!
Of course, there are way more tropes out there that make up the romance genre. If you're interested in reading more love stories, but you'd like to try something different, Filthybooks.com is a comprehensive resource for all things romance and erotic writing!
Check out more of our "top lists" for romance books today!
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