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12 of the Best Slow Burn Romance Books You just have to read

Updated: Oct 23, 2023

Reading is one of the best forms of escapism!

When you as a reader hold a book in your hands, what grabs your attention to want to read it?

A brilliant book grabs your attention from the first page and keeps you in suspense until the very end!

But what is considered a slow burn?

Slow-burn romance books emphasize the people and their interactions as the romance gradually develop and culminates to an explosive ending. These stories tend to be more true to reality in nature, although a little is more embellished in their portrayal of it!

The sexual chemistry, tension, and emotions develop at such a rapid speed that we are practically salivating at the prospect of the characters ripping their clothes off one another! You are so immersed in them and their connection by the time they realize they are in love that you feel like you are there with them!

From corporate romances between competitors to second chances with childhood pals, you're sure to find some new exciting slow-burn romance stories to add to your must-read list. Let's get your hormones going and look at some romance book recommendations below.

Vintage Erotic Picture of a Woman, Steamy erotic picture of a woman

#1 Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas

Book Cover of the Slow Burn Romance Book Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas, Steamy Slow Burn Romance Book Cover of Birthday Girl, Slow Burn Romance

Birthday Girl is a taboo romance that centers around a girl, Jordan. After unfortunate events, Jordan’s boyfriend Cole and Jordan find themselves homeless. Consequently, Jordan's dad, Pike, lets them move into his house together with Jordan.

Jordan and Pike's wonderful introductory moment is when we see them at the movies. She is alone and waiting for her boyfriend, Cole's appearance. This scene is energizing! From scene one, you can feel the intensity between the two characters.

Throughout the story, a 20-year age gap between Pike and Jordan complicates their relationship. They each struggle to maintain their sense of fidelity and loyalty.

The remainder of this book is a tangle of what, khen, and how until it reaches boiling point!

When you start reading this novel, you'll be eager to see what happens next!

#2 The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

Cover picture of the Slow Burn Romance Novel The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

The Hating Game features Lucy and Josh, two coworkers at a book publishing house who can't tolerate each other. This book is not only a Slow Burn Romance, but also a Forbidden Romance..

Lucy Hutton, a fierce and competitive employee, is continuously trying to outdo her coworker Joshua. Lucy and Joshua's hating-friendship is tested by work-related games.

When Lucy gets a significant promotion at work, she must choose between becoming Joshua's boss or resigning. But all the animosity and competition has Lucy having sexual fantasies about Joshua.

What happens after the office games?

Will this fragile romance crumble?

The Hating Game will keep every workplace-romance fan entertained until the bitter end!

#3 The Sweetest Oblivion by Danielle Lori

Cover of the Mafia Slow Burn Romance Book Sweetest Oblivion, Book Cover of the Sweetest Oblivion by Danielle Lori one of the best Slow Burn Romance Stories, Top Slow Burn Romance Book

Elena Abelli, who could be regarded as a mafia princess, is the subject of The Sweetest Oblivion.

Her Italian family was profoundly established, and their marriages were arranged rather than for love.

But due to a huge prior transgression, she was passed over for marriage.

Her younger sister was to take her place and marry one of the most prominent mafia figures, Nicholas Russo, aka Nico.

Elena is immediately drawn to Nico, much to her dismay. She tries to carry on with her life while ignoring him, but this does not go as planned. The chemistry between them is unmistakable.

Nico just will not leave her alone, and it's becoming increasingly difficult to ignore her desires.

Her sister is in love with someone else, but her father is unconcerned. What he says is final. Besides, the agreement has already been made. Neither can pull out of it now without repercussions.

Is Elena condemned to watch her sister spend the rest of her life with the only man she's ever had a genuine love for?

This gripping mafia romance is an all-night reading novel. It's written well, brutal and hot. The romance is slow-burning, but the sexual tension and reward are excellent!

#4 The Saint by Tiffany Reisz

Book Cover of the Slow Burn Romance Trope the Saint by Bestselling Author Tiffany Reisz, Book Cover showing a hot men of the sexy Slow Burn Romance Novel the Saint, Cover of the Forbidden Love Slow Burn Romance Book The Saint

The Saint elevates forbidden love to heights that the majority of us are hesitant to approach.

It follows the story of Eleanor as Eleanor rebels against the Church and her mother's dedication, vowing she'll never enter a church again.

Or will she?

Soon after, Eleanor sees Father Soren Stearns, a charming and passionate priest.

Eleanor goes to daily mass to be near him and yearns for him every moment they're apart.

Father Soren quickly reveals his deepest secrets and desires to her. It goes without saying that he crosses the boundaries of priesthood celibacy and a tumultuous affair ensues.

Religion can be a touchy issue for some, but if you're wanting to know what happens next, this book is a must.

#5 American King by Sierra Simone

Picture showing a hot man in a suit, cover of the steamy Slow Burn Romance Story American King by Sierra Simone

American King concludes the New Camelot Trilogy. This story is a wickedly erotic, intelligent, and passionate web of love, lust, deceit, and sacrifices that are woven throughout the novel.

In the course of the trilogy, a beautiful story of King Arthur in the present period is stitched together, complete with explicit romance inside a love triangle.

In the midst of political intrigue, dirty secrets, and falsehoods, Greer, Ash, and Embry, are caught up in a love triangle. In the final novel, the three turn on one another in a presidential campaign.

As you might expect, this comes with plot twists of passion and jealousy, which are revealed in this final wrap-up.

You cannot miss this story!

#6 Freshmen by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison

Cover of the College Slow Burn Romance Book Freshmen by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivson, best College Slow Burn Romance Novel

Freshman year is the time that sets the stance for the remainder of your educational career, but Phoebe had no idea her college 'independence' would take on a different tone.

When she arrives at school, a person she's been infatuated with for some time pops up. The story, Freshmen has a terrific realistic, genuine approach to relationships, hooking up, and friendship with benefits you don't see very often.

The story 'Freshmen' is a definite fun read that is enjoyable!

#7 The Deal by Elle Kennedy

Book Cover of the College Bad Boy Slow Burn Romance Book the Deal by Elle Kennedy

Perfect "new adult" angsty-romance reading!

Hannah Wells gets turned on by the bad boy at college in this Bad-Boy College Romantic Book.

Hannah is self-assured in every aspect of her life except her ability to pique the interest of her new crush. She has to tutor Garrett Graham, the ice hockey captain since he won't get the grades needed to skate if he keeps going the way he is.

As payment, he will assist Hannah in making her crush jealous. However, they both take on more than they can handle.

As you read this novel, you'll find yourself enjoying the finest sex you've ever had in between the sheets with them, and it's all thanks to a pretend kiss! And hey, you can get the Deal for FREE on Kindle Unlimited...

Cover of the Gay BDSM Slow Burn Romance Book The Master will Appear by LA Witt showing two men fencing, Dominance Slow Burn Romance Story

In this storyline, Dr. Mikhail "Misha" Budnikov looks at classmate fencer Ryan O'Connor and immediately recognizes his type. The egotistical hothead has no subtlety and much less control. In a nutshell, Misha's pet hates in life.

Misha challenges the cocky youngster to a sparring session, which he easily wins. Ryan unexpectedly requests him to be a coach and teach him to fence. Misha, surprised by the modesty, agrees.

Lessons in fencing quickly turn into something else, and Misha is teaching Ryan a new kind of education. A new world of dominance, obedience, pain, and ecstasy awaits Ryan at the hands of an older, wiser man.

But as their trust grows and their bond grows, Ryan withdraws, because of a long-lost hurt in love. He's not letting his guard down, even for a three-times divorced man twice his age.

Misha must now devise a strategy for breaching those barriers... Or, he might throw in the towel and walk away from Ryan who might well be the best thing in his love life.

Some romance books are big on the hot steamy sex but light on character development. This book strikes the ideal balance between the two!

#9 Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma

Dark Slow Burn Romance Novel Book Cover of Forbidden, The best Dark Romance Slow Burn Book

Lochan and Maya were forced to stand in for their absentee parents to care for their siblings at a young age. In their role as parents of the house, they've become a little too close to one another.

Tragic events, high levels of stress, and an absence of childhood have fuelled a toxic relationship between them. They are well aware that they cannot continue in this manner.

Yet they are entirely understanding and supportive of one another. Is it possible that someone else could provide for their needs?

A riveting and realistic story with dark overtones of the worst elements of life, this forbidden romance will appeal to readers who enjoy a compelling and realistic read.

You'll read this novel from beginning to end, hurtling towards an exploding conclusion!

#10 Vicious by L. J. Shen

Top Slow Burn Romance The Vicious by LJ Shen, Best Slow Burn Romance Book, Cover of Vicious which is one of the best Slow Burn Romance Books whowing a hot topless man

Vicious follows Spencer, the son of a rich family who lives a lavish and consequence-free life.

Vicious is conceited, extravagantly rich, and vicious. He's the kind of alpha man you want to despise, and his ruthlessness makes it easy to do so.

This novel has it all: family secrets, vengeance, survival, devotion, and love. The plot unfolds at a precisely steady pace, piece by piece. In each chapter of this novel, there appears to be something new to discover, and you find yourself continuously doubting Vicious's thinking and next movements.

Emelia is a kind and artistic spirit. Her courage and fortitude are admirable, especially in the face of the most humiliating situations. Her love for her family is also heartwarming. Vicious has so many levels that it would take an entire team of psychologists to properly analyze him.

Vicious and Amelia's partnership is a complex dynamic that is of times cruel, beautiful, and always interesting. Their chemistry is explosive.

When a tale is told in such a beautiful and seductive manner, it is impossible not to desire more and more!

#11 From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Best Slow Burn Romance Book from New York Times Bestselling Author Jennifer Armentrout named from Blood and Ash, Cover of from Blood and Ash which is a Top Slow Burn Romance Novel

Blood and Ash is a novel about Poppy, a young woman whose life has been predetermined from the minute she was born, irrespective of her own choices.

She has a responsibility to her family and to her people, and she must do so.

Hawke is a security guard in Poppy's entourage. His only goal is to keep her safe while also ensuring that she performs her responsibilities. Hawke has an uncanny ability to get under Poppy's skin in a manner that no one else can.

So, can Poppy do what she needs to do, even if she wants to do something else?

Could a 'hot' guard steer her off her course?

You can truly lose yourself in this mythical world. The chemistry between Poppy and Hawke makes for a perfect read.

#12 Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Classic Slow Burn Romance Novel Pride and Prejudice Cover which is still one of the best Romance Books of all time, Vintage Slow Burn Romance Novel

A true classic, it's written in ordinary 1800s English, at the time that Austen lived in the Victorian era.

This is an absolute must-read for any fan of romance or hot romance!

Darcy is the main character of Pride and Prejudice. The novel's main focus is on Darcy and Elizabeth's romance. Elizabeth's growing dislike for Darcy is the cause of the plot's complications.

Pride and Prejudice will provide you with a wealth of pleasure in a single book.

A historical sensual best romance tropes, as well as enthralling enemies to lovers plots, are featured in this novel!

It just goes to show that older types of romance books may still be as captivating as newer ones.

Reading Slow Burn Books Is Sexy!

We hope you've been able to add one or more new titles to your collection of forbidden slow-burn romance books.

If you are a first-timer at reading romance tropes, if that is the case, this list is an excellent place to begin. You'll never know what you'll enjoy unless you plunge in and try it all out for yourself!

Of course, there is a multitude of other romance tropes that contribute to the overall romance genre. Browse our page for romance book recommendations today!

What's more on Filthybooks?

Do you want more book recommendations - all centered around the steamy and erotic side of Literature?

Check out our top lists for everything from Essential Erotic Romance everyone has to read, the best Enemies to Lovers Romance Books or special Genres like Lesbian, Gay, even Erotic Mind Control and inspirational Sex education Books!

You'll even find the Best Illustrated Erotic Stories - a truly different and inspiring read!

And that's not even Everything - Check out the FREE Section!

We're truly committed to share with you the best reading ideas.

And to give with you as much steamy reading hours as possible!

That's why we established a full section with some of the Best Free Erotic Stories!

By the way: you can even download a Free E-Book there!!!


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