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For most of us the idea of romance starts with Mills and Boons. The tall, dark and handsome guy riding on the white horse sweeping you off your feet… blush, blush… and then that horse rides you to happily-ever-after land.
While many of you gradually dismount to reality, the rest of us still live in the fairy-tale world and this article is more for the former than the latter. For those cynics, this is to reinstate your faith in endless love… Read on.
1. Gone with the wind by Margaret Mitchell
You've seen the movie but never read the book? Fiddle-de-dee! The love triangle between Scarlett, Ashley and Rhett is much more intense on the pages than on the reel.
And for ladies it’s a MUST read because somehow, somewhere you’ll be able to relate to many faces of Scarlett’s. How she was sweet, selfish, scheming and sensitive and how she loses the man she loved and how she falls in love with a man whom she hated, it’s spellbinding.
This one should be number 1 in your bucket list.
2. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
It's a series of time-travel romances that will completely enthrall you. The story is about Claire Beauchamp who travels back in time to a violent Scotland after serving in WWII torn England as a nurse. On her journey, she falls in love with spirited warrior Jamie, who is the polar opposite of her husband Frank.
Who will she choose and in which era will she decide to stay? If you want to know read the book. We bet her dilemma will drive you crazy more than the protagonist herself.
3. The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
It's a sheer tear-jerker that shouldn’t deter you from reading even if you’re more pragmatic than romantic. Allie and Noah’s romance is grounded in reality, something that can happen to anyone.
Besides Nicholas is one of the best selling authors. Three of his books have been made into movies including A Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember and The Notebook of course. And yes, the movie is good but the book is better.
4. Love story by Erich Segal
All the romantics in the world - listen- you will not want to miss this novel. It’s really one of the most shamelessly sentimental love stories ever written.
You mushy people will know what’s exactly in store for you when the opening line reads something like this, "What can you say about a twenty-five year old girl who died? That she was beautiful and brilliant. That she loved Mozart and Bach. The Beatles. And me."
5. Pride and prejudice by Jane Austen
In the beginning the language of the book might be too tedious for you to continue more than 50 pages but trust me every detail of this masterpiece is finely tuned to create one of the most prolific books ever written.
The story follows Elizabeth Bennet, a middle class girl, and her love affair with one of the richest man in town, Darcy. The romance straight out of regency era will leave you dreamy-eyed for years to come.
6. Morning Glory by LaVyrle Spencer
This book is bound to captivate your heart through its sentimental and artistic appeal.
When ex-con Will Parker arrives in Georgia, after the Great Depression, he promptly realises that this town is no good for him. That is until he happens to catch a local paper and sees in the classified ads a woman advertising for a husband. How this trivial trick of fate entwines their life together makes it a riveting read even for a cynic.
7. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
I have to confess our generation has limited admiration for the two Giant Victorians, Austen and Bronte, preferring Danielle Steele and Dan Brown over them. But the next time you go to the library, go to the literature section and pick up this book. You won’t regret it.
Jane Eyre is an orphan who lives with her aunt but doesn't find herself fitting in that family. Emotionally abused by her aunt and banned from the company of her cousins, she finds a job to get away from her loneliness where she falls in love with her Byronic employer, Edward Rochester.
In spite of the book being more than 150 years old, you’ll find the narrative compelling and engaging.
8. Whitney, My love by Judith McNaught
This is one story which is sure to linger in your heart forever. The story about Whitney who grew from a sassy "hoyden" into a suave woman is instantaneously relatable. And the things she goes through to win the heart of Paul, her childhood love, is wrought with emotions.
By the end of the book you’ll go from jeering her to cheering her, that makes it a complete Diva read.
9. Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Devereaux
How many times have you heard yourself saying to your friends, "I’m waiting for my knight in shining armor" and how many times have you kissed frogs in the hope of them turning into princes? Probably a million times right? If you’ve turned from hopeful to hopeless, it’s time to read Knight in Shining Armor.
Dougless Montgomery has planned a perfect holiday for her fiancé, Robert. But after a stupid fight, he abandons her in a churchyard near the tomb of Nicholas Stafford, an earl who died in 1564. Magically the tomb comes alive… and how the story takes a twist? We’re not going to tell you find it for yourself.
10. Once and always by Judith McNaught
Reading Judith’s books is like having a pint of Baskin and Robins and eating it in one sitting. It’s THAT captivating. Although Kingdom of Dreams and Something Wonderful are excellent, this comes up tops.
This novel is about an orphaned American beauty, Victoria Seaton, who travels to England to claim her long-lost heritage. On her arrival she falls in love with notorious Lord Jason Fielding. Appalled and attracted to him at the same time, Victoria has a hard time understanding her own feelings. Eventually does she or doesn’t she realise her love, is something you must read to find out.
If you think we missed out on a book, leave us a comment and let us know.
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