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6 Enthralling Enemies-to-Lovers Novels

Natalie is a bookworm with a penchant for romance, adventure, and intrigue who loves to share her thoughts on popular novels with the world.

If you love it when opposites attract, these six titles will definitely be up your alley.

If you love it when opposites attract, these six titles will definitely be up your alley.

Enemies-to-lovers novels are works of fiction in which two individuals who initially despise (or at least resent) one another are thrust together by circumstance and eventually warm up to each other. It's become a popular trope, especially in young adult fiction, and it tends to make for some exciting drama. Below are my six favorite enemies-to-lovers titles.

"The Cruel Prince" by Holly Black

"The Cruel Prince" by Holly Black

1. The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Jude was seven when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans—especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King. To win a place at the Court, she must defy him—and face the consequences. As Jude becomes more deeply embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, she discovers her own capacity for trickery and bloodshed. But as betrayal threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters and Faerie itself.

Why You Should Read It

It was such an intoxicating romance, and the development of the characters and relationship was so enjoyable. I'm definitely not the only one who loves this couple; the amount of amazing fan art inspired by this book series is amazing and also very motivating for anyone wanting to get into the series.

"The Night Circus" by Erin Morgenstern

"The Night Circus" by Erin Morgenstern

2. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will.

Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands. True love or not, the game must play out, and the fate of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hangs in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Why You Should Read It

My favourite concept in books will forever be magic! In this book, magic is what entwines these two characters, but it is also why they are competitors. Romantic gestures are cute and all, but have you experienced romantic gestures that involve whimsical tents? Yeah, I didn't think so.

"Bring Me Their Hearts" by Sara Wolf

"Bring Me Their Hearts" by Sara Wolf

3. Bring Me Their Hearts by Sara Wolf

Zera is a Heartless—the immortal, un-aging soldier of a witch. Bound to the witch Nightsinger ever since she saved her from the bandits who murdered her family, Zera longs for freedom from the woods they hide in. With her heart in a jar under Nightsinger’s control, she serves the witch unquestioningly.

Nightsinger asks Zera for a Prince’s heart in exchange for her own, but there's one caveat—if she’s discovered infiltrating the court, Nightsinger will destroy her heart rather than see her tortured by the witch-hating nobles. Crown Prince Lucien d’Malvane hates the royal court as much as it loves him. Every tutor is too afraid to correct him, and every girl is jockeying for a place at his darkly handsome side.

No one can challenge him—until the arrival of Lady Zera, that is. She’s inelegant, smart-mouthed, carefree, and out for his blood. The Prince’s honor has him quickly aiming for her throat. So begins a game of cat and mouse between a girl with nothing to lose and a boy who has it all. Winner takes the loser’s heart—literally.

Why You Should Read It

Zera is such a fun character; she says the best lines and has such an interesting back story. Seeing her journey of learning about Lucien and his goals and motives was a great way of integrating her emotions and feelings into the text.

"Renegades" by Marissa Meyer

"Renegades" by Marissa Meyer

4. Renegades by Marissa Meyer

The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies—humans with extraordinary abilities—who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos once reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone . . . except the villains they overthrew. Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice—and in her. But Nova's allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both.

Why You Should Read It

Marissa Meyer really knows how to write romance. The pacing wasn't too quick, but it was quick enough that there was an instant attraction. I'm also glad that even though Nova, the main character, is on the villains' side, she has good morals and reason that don't change even when she meets Adrian.

"The Shadows Between Us" by Tricia Levenseller

"The Shadows Between Us" by Tricia Levenseller

5. The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller

Alessandra is tired of being overlooked, but she has a three-step plan to gain power:

  1. Woo the Shadow King.
  2. Marry him.
  3. Kill him and take his kingdom for herself.

No one knows the extent of the freshly crowned Shadow King’s power. Some say he can command the shadows that swirl around him to do his bidding. Others say they speak to him, whispering the thoughts of his enemies. Regardless, Alessandra knows what she deserves, and she’s going to do everything within her power to get it. But Alessandra’s not the only one trying to kill the king. As attempts on his life are made, she finds herself trying to keep him alive long enough for him to make her his queen—all while struggling not to lose her heart. After all, who better for a Shadow King than a cunning, villainous queen?

Why You Should Read It

Everything about this was so different and unique. Alessandra is a character that I want to be friends with but at the same time terrified of. Her fascinating mindset and terrifying goal combine to create a truly compelling character.

"Rebel Belle" by Rachel Hawkins

"Rebel Belle" by Rachel Hawkins

6. Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins

Harper Price, a peerless Southern belle, was born ready for a Homecoming tiara. But after a strange run-in at the dance imbues her with incredible abilities, Harper's destiny takes a turn for the seriously weird. She becomes a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with agility, super strength, and lethal fighting instincts. Just when life can't get any more disastrously crazy, Harper finds out who she's charged to protect: David Stark, a school reporter, the subject of a mysterious prophecy, and possibly Harper's least favorite person. But things get complicated when Harper starts falling for him—and discovers that David's own fate could very well be to destroy Earth.

Why You Should Read It

With snappy banter, cotillion dresses, non-stop action, and a touch of magic, this new young-adult series from bestseller Rachel Hawkins is going to make y'all beg for more. A super-popular girl ends up with the adorable dork? Yes please! Harper and David have been rivals since they were young, meaning they already know a lot about each other. The fact that Harper has to become Davids's protector changes their whole relationship and even reveals a few things.

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2020 Natalie Zappa

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