This list of romance novels featuring healthy depictions of interracial romance was originally published in our romance newsletter, Kissing Books. Sign up for it here to get romance news, reviews, deals, and more!
In things I wish I could unlearn, I discovered that there is a book floating around being advertised as a BWWM abuse romance.
I could have lived my entire life three times over and not wanted to know this. There are so many things wrong with this, where to begin? This is a huge difference from “bully” romance in that there is more damaging connotation behind it. The fact that it is specifically advertised as a BWWM romance is triggering and problematic AF.
Again let me state that, for obvious reasons, I have no problem with IR.
My problem is that this book is outwardly being advertised with pride as a romance between a Black woman and white man that is abusive. The fact that it even got written and that it is out there getting recommended means that some twisted algorithm is beyond enraging and saddening.
Bluntly put, being in an IR is hard enough without nonsense like this floating around the world, romance related or otherwise. While not as bad as it once was, in certain parts of the country, it’s still a dangerous thing. I don’t believe any type of love is superior to one or another. Love is love is love is love. But this is not the kind of love that Romancelandia needs or wants.
This goes beyond any shade of dark romance. It borders on some really twisted, gross form of fetishization. There’s no making this book sound appealing at all. Here’s hoping that it, and the one I’ve mentioned before, just goes away.
And, before anyone says that the critics to this book, which of course shall not be named, are being oversensitive, I pose the following question. Would anyone be okay with this if the races of those genders were reversed?
I had been planning on leaving this type of recommendation for closer to Loving Day in June. But considering the recent developments in what is being pushed as IR as of late, I think it’s time to shine a light on better IRs out there that you can spend your time and money on.
Like Lovers Do by Tracey Livesay
In exchange for a recommendation from his prominent family, doctor Nicole agrees to act as roommate Ben’s new girlfriend to help him avoid his ex at a weekend getaway in Martha’s Vineyard. Of course, a weekend getaway and close quarters make the attraction they’ve been trying to avoid impossible to ignore. What I really appreciate about this book is that it tackles a lot of the microaggressions that people in an IR go through. Nicole has to deal with snide, racist remarks from Ben’s jealous ex and Ben has to realize how privileged he is even if he never took advantage of it. However, this book is still full of laughs, love, and an HEA.
Grumpy Fake Boyfriend by Jackie Lau
Reclusive sci-fi author Will begrudgingly agrees to act as the fake boyfriend for Naomi, his friend’s younger sister. She needs a buffer between her and her ex at a friend’s weekend getaway and Will fits the part, at least for a short period of time. Even though he’s always been attracted to her, he has placed her firmly in a “no-touch” zone because of his closeness with her brother. However, a weekend away from big brother means that they can play to their heart’s content. While there isn’t a lot of conflict here, it’s still a sweet depiction of an IR full of steamy love scenes.
Grumpy Jake by Melissa Blue
Bailey is determined to not be another one of sexy single dad Jake’s conquests and keeps him at arm’s length, only engaging when it comes to his son. After being stuck in an elevator, both come to a mutual understanding that develops into a mutual friendship and then a mutual attraction. This is a pretty steamy novella, but it packs an emotional punch as well and will make you feel all the things. There are a few CWs here but the one I can remember off the bat is death of a parent. If this author is new to you, trust me; take a chance on this one. You won’t be disappointed.
That’s not all! Click here for even more great adult interracial romance and check out these YA IR romance books, too.