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247: Love Is in the Air 2023 - Romance Recs

Episode Cover Graphic with Words Love is in the Air 2023

Are you looking for romance books to read this season? Jen and Ashley are back with our annual Love Is in the Air episode, sharing some of our latest favorite romance books with you.

We share our picks, Julia Whelan’s Thank You for Listening ( | and Mariana Zapata’s From Lukov with Love (

These romance recommendations are from recent reads, but if you're looking for more recommendations, you can listen back to our episodes from previous years, including episode 216, episode 164, and episode 112. What do you recommend? Let us know! Love what we're doing? Support us on Patreon for $5 or more to get at least one bonus episode a month!

Bookish Check-in

Ashley - Michael Schur’s How to Be Perfect ( |

Jen - Cormac McCarthy’s The Road ( |

Our Romance Book Recommendations

Ashley - Julia Whelan’s Thank You for Listening ( |

Jen - Mariana Zapata’s From Lukov with Love (

Give Me One - Feelings about Valentine's Day

(A note to our readers: click on the hashtags above to see our other blog posts with the same hashtag.)

Interested in what else we're reading? Check out our Featured Books page.

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Bookish Check-in

Ashley was reading...

Book Cover of How to Be Perfect by Michael Schur

Michael Schur’s How to Be Perfect: The Correct Answer to Every Moral Question ( |

From the Publisher:

"Most people think of themselves as 'good', but it’s not always easy to determine what’s 'good' or 'bad' - especially in a world filled with complicated choices and pitfalls and booby traps and bad advice. Fortunately, many smart philosophers have been pondering this conundrum for millennia, and they have guidance for us. With bright wit and deep insight, How to Be Perfect explains concepts like deontology, utilitarianism, existentialism, ubuntu, and more, so we can sound cool at parties and become better people.

"Schur starts off with easy ethical questions like 'Should I punch my friend in the face for no reason?' (No.) and works his way up to the most complex moral issues we all face. Such as: Can I still enjoy great art if it was created by terrible people? How much money should I give to charity? Why bother being good at all when there are no consequences for being bad? And much more. By the time the book is done, we’ll know exactly how to act in every conceivable situation, so as to produce a verifiably maximal amount of moral good. We will be perfect, and all our friends will be jealous. Okay, not quite. Instead, we’ll gain fresh, funny, inspiring wisdom on the toughest issues we face every day."

Book Cover of The Road by Cormac McCarthy

Jen - Cormac McCarthy’s The Road ( |

From the Publisher:

"America is a barren landscape of smoldering ashes, devoid of life except for those people still struggling to scratch out some type of existence. Amidst this destruction, a father and his young son walk, always toward the coast, but with no real understanding that circumstances will improve once they arrive. Still, they persevere, and their relationship comes to represent goodness in a world of utter devastation.

"Bleak but brilliant, with glimmers of hope and humor, The Road is a stunning allegory and perhaps Cormac McCarthy's finest novel to date. This remarkable departure from his previous works has been hailed by Kirkus Reviews as a 'novel of horrific beauty, where death is the only truth.'

"McCarthy, a New York Times best-selling author, is a past recipient of the National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award. He is widely considered one of America's greatest writers."

Our Romance Book Recommendations

Ashley recommends...

Book Cover of Thank You for Listening by Julia Whelan

Julia Whelan’s Thank You for Listening ( |

From the Publisher:

"For Sewanee Chester, being an audiobook narrator is a long way from her old dreams, but the days of being a star on film sets are long behind her. She’s found success and satisfaction from the inside of a sound booth and it allows her to care for her beloved, ailing grandmother. When she arrives in Las Vegas last-minute for a book convention, Sewanee unexpectedly spends a whirlwind night with a charming stranger.

"On her return home, Sewanee discovers one of the world’s most beloved romance novelists wanted her to perform her last book—with Brock McNight, the industry’s hottest, most secretive voice. Sewanee doesn’t buy what romance novels are selling—not after her own dreams were tragically cut short—and she stopped narrating them years ago. But her admiration of the late author, and the opportunity to get her grandmother more help, makes her decision for her.

"As Sewanee begins work on the book, resurrecting her old romance pseudonym, she and Brock forge a real connection, hidden behind the comfort of anonymity. Soon, she is dreaming again, but secrets are revealed, and the realities of life come crashing down around her once more.

"If she can learn to risk everything for desires she has long buried, she will discover a world of intimacy and acceptance she never believed would be hers."

Jen recommends...

Book Cover of From Lukov with Love by Mariana Zapata

Mariana Zapata’s From Lukov with Love (

From the Publisher:

"If someone were to ask Jasmine Santos to describe the last few years of her life with a single word, it would definitely be a four-letter one. After seventeen years—and countless broken bones and broken promises—she knows her window to compete in figure skating is coming to a close. But when the offer of a lifetime comes in from an arrogant idiot she’s spent the last decade dreaming about pushing in the way of a moving bus, Jasmine might have to reconsider everything.Including Ivan Lukov."


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