Sex

6 Romance Novels With Sex Scenes So Hot You'll Melt

When I was in high school I used to sneak my mom's Nora Roberts books up to my bedroom and read her erotic fiction under the cover of night. As my parents snored, I was captivated by the stories of three estranged sisters brought together to care for their father's ranch after his death, and of three witches drawn together to fight an evil spirit on a picturesque island.

The powerful women at the heart of Roberts' books were always a draw, of course, but that wasn't the reason I needed to hide them. I read them in secret because Roberts is also a master at detailed, intricate, and downright sweltering sex scenes.

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Since those high school days, I've leaned in to my love of erotic fiction, and found that you can find a smutty story anywhere — Reddit, erotic fiction websites, and certain fanfiction forums, to name a few. Don't get me wrong, I love reading a smut fic purely for the sex alone. But the best stories, I've found, still come from romance writers like Roberts because they're about more than just the sex.

In the interest of spreading my love of romance novels, I've listed a few books below — some that I've read, some that friends have recommended to me, and all with sex scenes so hot you might just melt.

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Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuison


This 2019 bestseller is all about a romance between the Prince of England and the (fictional) U.S. president's son — it's a classic enemies-to-friends-to-lovers story with several steamy sex scenes.

Synopsis: When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius―his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one problem: Alex has a beef with the actual prince, Henry, across the pond. And when the tabloids get hold of a photo involving an Alex-Henry altercation, U.S./British relations take a turn for the worse.

Heads of family, state, and other handlers devise a plan for damage control: staging a truce between the two rivals. What at first begins as a fake, Instagram-able friendship grows deeper, and more dangerous, than either Alex or Henry could have imagined. Soon Alex finds himself hurtling into a secret romance with a surprisingly unstuffy Henry that could derail the campaign and upend two nations and begs the question: Can love save the world after all? Where do we find the courage, and the power, to be the people we are meant to be? And how can we learn to let our true colors shine through? Casey McQuiston's Red, White & Royal Blue proves that true love isn't always diplomatic.
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Heaven and Earth by Nora Roberts


I couldn't in good conscience write a romance list without including a Nora Roberts book. This one is the second in a trilogy about three witches who save their island and find handsome lovers along the way.

Synopsis: Ripley Todd's job as a sheriff’s deputy keeps her busy and happy, and she has no trouble finding men when she wants them — which, lately, isn’t all that often. She’s perfectly content, except for one thing: she has special powers that both frighten and confuse her. Distraction soon arrives in the handsome form of MacAllister Booke — a researcher who’s come to investigate the rumors of witchcraft that haunt Three Sisters Island. Right from the start, he knows there’s something extraordinary about Ripley Todd. Fascinated by her struggle with her amazing abilities, he becomes determined to help her accept who she is and open her heart.
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A Gentleman Never Keeps Score by Cat Sebastian


If LGBTQ+ historical fiction is your thing, Cat Sebastian has you covered.

Synopsis: Once beloved by London's fashionable elite, Hartley Sedgwick has become a recluse after a spate of salacious gossip exposed his most-private secrets. Rarely venturing from the house he's inherited, Hartley is captivated by the exceedingly handsome man who seeks to rob him.

Since retiring from the boxing ring, Sam Fox has made his pub, The Bell, into a haven for those in his Free Black community. But when his best friend Kate implores him to find and destroy a scandalously revealing painting of her, he agrees. Sam would do anything to protect those he loves, even if it means stealing from a wealthy gentleman. But when he encounters Hartley, he soon finds himself wanting to steal more than just a painting from the lovely, lonely man — he wants to steal his heart.
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Serving Pleasure by Alisha Rai


Alisha Rai often serves up incredible romantic fiction written from the perspective of women of color.

Synopsis: Rana Malik is over being her family’s resident black sheep. She’s on a mission: ditch the casual hook-ups, revamp her bad-girl image, and fall in love with a proper Mr. Right even her conservative mama can’t find fault with. Not on the menu? The beautiful, brooding Mr. Right Now who lives next door, and all the ways he whets her appetite.
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A Princess Theory by Alyssa Cole


Alyssa Cole's A Princess In Theory is exactly what would happen if the viral emails from "princes" far, far away were actually legit.

Synopsis: Between grad school and multiple jobs, Naledi Smith doesn’t have time for fairy tales… or patience for the constant e-mails claiming she’s betrothed to an African prince. Sure. Right. Delete! As a former foster kid, she’s learned that the only things she can depend on are herself and the scientific method, and a silly e-mail won’t convince her otherwise.

Prince Thabiso is the sole heir to the throne of Thesolo, shouldering the hopes of his parents and his people. At the top of their list? His marriage. Ever dutiful, he tracks down his missing betrothed. When Naledi mistakes the prince for a pauper, Thabiso can’t resist the chance to experience life — and love — without the burden of his crown.

The chemistry between them is instant and irresistible, and flirty friendship quickly evolves into passionate nights. But when the truth is revealed, can a princess in theory become a princess ever after?
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The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang


In The Kiss Quotient, Helen Hoang gives us something we rarely see: a romance heroine of color who also happens to have a disability.

Synopsis: Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases — a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.

It doesn't help that Stella has Asperger's and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice — with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can't afford to turn down Stella's offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan — from foreplay to more-than-missionary position...
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