Soul Ripping Romance Tag

Thanks so much to Hannah @ I Have Thoughts on Books for the tag! Romance is just my sort of thing. Sorry it’s taken me a little while to get to this one. 🙂

The Rules

  • Thank the person who tagged you and create a pingback to the original author – Nel at Reactionary Tales.
  • Share at least 5 (but more are welcome) romances that tugged your heart strings. They can be from books, movies, TV shows, manga; anything you can think of! They can be examples of sad tears, angry tears, happy tears or a combination of all three.
  • Nominate 5 (or more) people to share their emotional traumas
  • (Note: Try not to spoil the story for your readers in case they would like to check out these romances on their own)


I tagged ten books, WHOOPS. Romantic spec fic is kind of my thing, so honestly could have just kept tagging. And tagging. And tagging. Welp. 🙂 As far as soul ripping, well, I loved all these books in different ways, but well done romance always tugs my heart strings.

  • The Gentlemen’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee. I. Love. This. Book. It’s just sooooo much fun. Monty is a lovable mess who needs to get his life together. There’s the sweet angst of (supposedly) unrequited love. It’s not strictly a romance, it’s more about self discovery and growing up, taking responsibility for yourself, etc. But, the love story in this one is rather sweet. ❤
  • Radiance by Grace Draven. This one is sort of a Beauty and the Beast story, with a twist. Our two main characters are facing a political marriage, to secure an alliance between their peoples. Their cultures are vastly different, but they’re both willing to make the best of things. Speaking of sweet romances, this one is drama-free as well. I loved watching them fall in love over the course of the story.
  • The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg. This is another author who writes a lot of romances into her spec fic, which is why I’ll keep on reading her books. I really loved this entire series. There’s a bit of a forbidden romance aspect with this one, as she falls in love with her mentor from school. Yay, angst! Loved the spec fic elements of this one too, with the way magic works in the world and everything.
  • Witchmark by C.L. Polk. This was such an enjoyable read. The romance in this one takes just a little bit to get going, but there is some great UST leading up to it. 😀  The world building here is great, and I loved the writing style and prose. Can’t wait to read the next book in the series.
  • Snowspelled by Stephanie Burgis. No list of romantic spec fic would be complete without at least one book by Stephanie Burgis. I actually debated which book to put on here for a bit because I really loved Masks and Shadows as well, but I think this one has a stronger romance aspect to it (in that it’s a bigger part of the book overall). I love the alternate history world building in this one and the way some of the romance tropes have been flipped as a result.
  • In the Vanishers’ Palace by Aliette de Bodard. This one is a novella, a f/f Beauty and the Beast dark fantasy/science fiction retelling heavily influenced by Vietnamese culture. That was a mouthful. LOVED THIS. The writing in this is heavenly. Honestly, it’s not a long read, so if you’re on the fence, I’d say it’s worth checking out.
  • Fruits Basket by Natsuki Takaya. I love Fruits Basket. It’s one of my favorite anime/manga of all time. I recently (a couple of years ago) binge reread the entire manga series. This actually has a few rather sweet romances in it, but I’m all about Kyo/Tohru. I was a Kyo/Tohru shipper from the beginning too. Sorry Yuki. I think I have Fruits Basket on the mind since I’ve been watching the remake lately. 🙂
  • The Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo. I loved this book so much the first time I read it that I put it down, took a deep breath, and then immediately reread it. Then I cried and had a book hangover for about a week. Now, I’m a bit on the over dramatic side so YMMV, but I really did love this book. The romance isn’t a huge part of the story , but it’s a sweet one.
  • Polaris Rising by Jessie Mihalik. This was a really fun space opera romance! The main male protag was a tad too alpha for me, but I still had a heck of a good time with this one. I don’t read a ton of science fiction, but if I can find more like this then I’ll definitely increase my consumption of it.
  • Swordheart by T. Kingfisher. Oh, I think I may be due for a reread of this soon. I read this one last year and utterly fell in love with this book about a man stuck in an enchanted sword and the woman who, er, unsheathes him. I love the romance in this one, two adults adulting at romance, but what you might not expect is that it’s also really funny. I laughed so much reading this book.

Well, that’s my overly long list of spec fic romances! Not going to tag anyone else for this, but you know the drill:  if you think this tag might be fun to fill out then consider yourself tagged. 

9 thoughts on “Soul Ripping Romance Tag

    • waytoofantasy says:

      I really loved Radiance. The first book is much more of a romance, the characters getting to know each other, some court intrigue, etc. The second book is a lot more epic fantasy-ish. I enjoyed them a lot!

  1. @lynnsbooks says:

    Well, I always say that romance isn’t my thing and yet I’ve read four off your list and thoroughly enjoyed them – so perhaps I protest too much.
    Lynn 😀

  2. Hannah says:

    Great answers! I really really need to get to Polaris Rising because it sounds SO up my alley – and I do like alpha males in romance as long as they don’t veer too much into the asshole category.

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