The Most Worn Romance Novels on Lyla’s Bookshelf


As a writer, I spend a lot of time reading. Here are some romance novels I’ve read (and reread) over the years and why they’re my favorites. (Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, I may earn commission from qualifying purchases from

I would have to say that my all time favorite romance author is Eloisa James. When I first found her books, they opened up a whole different world for me. I grew up in fantasy worlds, not romantic (Think Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter worlds).

In my early twenties, after my first son was born, I discovered the book Pleasure for Pleasure. It described the youngest of the Essex sisters and her launch into society and finding a marriageable husband. Full of romance, intrigue, and some silly antics, I finished it in a matter of days.

By then, I was hooked. I started reading every novel she had available; every series in order. And yes, I have reread every book she wrote while waiting on her next book.

But, which ones of hers are my favorites?

That is really hard to determine. It really just depends on my mood. Here are my top five of hers.

5. When Beauty Tamed the Beast

This one is based on the classic fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast. If you have ever watched the show House, you would realize that she based the male character on Dr. House. It was amazing how she brought that character in her beast character in the book.

4. Pleasure for Pleasure

Of the Essex sister books, this is by far my favorite. A lot of it has to do with Josie’s attitude. She is a no-nonsense person but has image problems that has carried with her through the years. Being the youngest, she is the last to be married off, and she fears she won’t be able to fall in love.  

3. Duchess in Love

This was another one of the stories I read in the beginning of my experience with Eloisa James. This follows Gina, a duchess who has yet to consummate her marriage as the Duke, who she thought was a relative, fled out a window immediately after the marriage ceremony. Years later, she wants an annulment so she can marry, who she thinks is the best chance for her. But, boy is she wrong.

2. Potent Pleasures

One of the first books that Eloisa wrote, and is one I come back to often. This follows Charlotte, a young debutant who makes a reckless mistake at a garden party, as she rediscovers him several years later and decides to marry him. However, the dashing Earl doesn’t remember her at all, thinking instead she remembers her brother. Will Charlotte be able to convince him of the truth?

1. This Duchess of Mine

Jemma makes an amazing Duchess, even with all the supposed scandals she creates. However, her husband needs an heir. After nine years separation, she comes home so they can attempt such a fete. Many things had changed for both of them, but one: they both still loved each other. Can they get over the past to build a future? Will Elijah have a future?

As you can tell, amazing reads. Every one of those books I have read/listened to at least five times. I know the plots of each by heart. I hope that you find your next great read in one of them.

The Most Worn Romance Novels on Lyla's Bookshelf

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