Last Updated on June 23, 2023 by Louisa
I love a good angst romance novel because they are so emotional and gripping. However, sometimes they can be too ‘angsty’ and not enough ‘romance’ for my liking.
So, if you’re a fan of angst, but you want something that only has a small amount of light-hearted and sweet angst, then these are the best angst romance books for you!
Each book in this list has a storyline that will make your heart race, and characters that will keep you hooked until the very end.
Whether you’re looking for a romantic read that will make your heartache, or something more lighthearted and fun, these angst romance novels are definitely worth your time.
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What To Expect From An Angst Romance Book?
Light angst romance books are the perfect combination of swoon-worthy moments and characters dealing with issues.
These types of stories bring a lovely balance between emotions and action, finding just the right moment to make you feel something without going too deep.
The protagonists of a light angst romance are often dealing with internal struggles or difficult relationships that have to be made right.
Often, these love interests will have differing opinions about life and need time to find common ground before getting together.
The best light angsty romances focus on developing meaningful connections between the main characters, often at the expense of other subplots.
They will usually contain some fun elements such as light humor and flirting scenes that add a bit of spice to an already cozy atmosphere.
Best Sweet Angst Romance Books
If you want a love story that’s sweet and tender, then below are my top recommendations…
1. Persuasion – Jane Austen
Persuasion was Jane Austen’s last complete novel she ever wrote. It was published six months after she died.
It’s about a woman named Anne, who is forced to leave her home so her family could save money and pay off their debts.
It was rented to an Admiral and his wife, coincidentally, Anne was engaged to the wife’s brother, Navy Captain Frederick Wentworth, but was persuaded to call off the marriage by her friends.
Both were single for several years after. One day, they meet again, and it sparks a new flame. This is a sweet angsty romance novel about giving love another chance.
2. The Language of Flowers – Vanessa Diffenbaugh
In Victorian times, flowers were introduced as a way to convey romance. Different flowers had different meanings, for example, honeysuckle meant devotion, asters mean patience, and red roses, as you could guess, are for love.
But for Victoria Jones, flowers = mistrust, and solitude. After she spent her childhood in foster care, she finds it difficult to get close to anyone, and her only connection to love is through flowers and their meanings.
Now eighteen and out of foster care with nowhere to go, she realizes she has a gift for helping others through flowers.
One day, an unexpected meeting with a stranger has her questioning everything she knows about love.
When she’s forced her past and all its secrets, she must decide whether a second chance at happiness is a risk worth taking.
Expect moments that make you smile, laugh, cry, and swoon – all with a touch of suspense! This is a second chance romance novel that will have you feeling all the emotions.
3. Anna and the French Kiss – Stephanie Perkins
Anna is almost in her senior year in Atlanta. She has a great job, a trustworthy best friend, and a crush that looks to be moving forward.
So when her father unexpectedly ships her off to a boarding high school in Paris, she’s enraged —until Étienne St. Clair walks on the scene.
He’s perfect in every way. One problem though – he’s taken. And to top it all off, her crush from back home might be making strides in their relationship.
Anna has to choose between two crushes. Can she wait a year for her crush back home? Or will too many romantic near-misses end in a French kiss?
This sweet angsty romance book is full of angst and passion. Even when things look bleak, readers can still feel hopeful for a happy ending.
4. Virgin River (Virgin River Series) – Robyn Carr
Virgin River, the spectacular debut novel by Robyn Carr, is now a Netflix original series.
This sweet small town romance novel takes place in the small town of Virgin River with a population of six hundred and follows the journey of Melinda Monroe, a widowed midwife/nurse trying to escape her heartache.
At first impression, things do not look promising for Melinda as she arrives in town to find her cabin is a dump and roads are dangerous.
It looks like she’s made a mistake until an abandoned baby changes everything on her porch.
Jack Sheridan, a former marine, also enters the picture just as Melinda decides to leave town – making her reconsider her escape plans.
With his arrival comes renewed hope and emotions that will leave you breathless amidst moments of tenderness and suspense.
This light angst romance book has it all -sweetness, drama and heart-swelling moments -all adding up to an unforgettable read!
It’s the perfect book to read after a break up.
5. The Rosie Project – Graeme Simsion
The Rosie Project is a tender and humourous angst romance novel with a doctor that follows an odd and socially awkward professor as he seeks to find true love.
Love is not a science. Don Tillman, an intelligent and socially inept professor suddenly decides it’s time he found a wife. He designs the Wife Project, an orderly and scientific way to find his perfect partner.
He prepares a sixteen-page survey to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Rosie Jarman has all the right qualities, but Don disqualifies her. However, he is intrigued by her quest to find her true family – her biological father. She prepares a similar project, called The Father Project, on which Don collaborates on.
When an unlikely relationship develops, Don must learn, despite what his scientific brain tells him, that love is something that cannot be controlled.
This endearing and emotional angst romance novel is the debut by Graeme Simsion – a romantic comedy author to watch out for.
6. Real – Katie Evans
Real is the first novel in a New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling series by Katie Evans. It’s a bad boy romance book that follows a beautiful sports rehab specialist who battles with her attraction to a steamy underground fighter.
Remington Tate is a bad boy, both in and out of the ring. He has rock-hard abs and a raw, animal-like manner that gets the ladies hot under the collar. But when he meets Brooke Dumas, he decides there is only one woman he wants.
Brooke was hired to keep his perfect body working like a machine. As she tours the dangerous underground fighting scene, her own body becomes primal.
As their professional relationship develops, the flirtations become more intense, leaving the reader full of angst and anticipation.
But though they play it cool. It’s evident that their desire is REAL.
This angst romance book is a little more on the angst side than tender, but it’s a lovely angsty romance story full of emotion and warmth.
7. Reason to Breathe – Rebecca Donovan
Reason to Breathe is the first in the bestselling Breathing Series by Rebecca Donovan.
Set in an affluent town in Connecticut called Weslyn, where everyone wants to be seen and heard, Emma Thomas is trying to hide.
She’s trying to feign perfection by hiding her bruises and scars, trying to pretend her life is just as perfect as everyone else’s.
Without warning, she finds love. Love teaches her to recognize her own worth, even if it means revealing a secret she would rather not share.
This is an angsty romance book about one girl’s journey of love and hope.
Trigger warning: this book contains scenes of abuse.
8. Hot Under His Collar – Andie J. Christopher
Father Patrick Dooley joined the clergy wanting to keep the last wish of his beloved mother.
However, as time passes, he starts to doubt if this is truely his destiny and contemplates giving it all up for a different life.
Sasha Finerghty has secretly admired Patrick from afar and as luck would have it she turns out to be the solution to keeping the church a float when they are in desperate need of funding.
The two become close friends which eventually leads to an intense forbidden love relationship with more questions than answers. Will Patrick give up his calling? Can they control their feelings for one another?
This light angst romance book with forbidden romantic moments will captivate you and keep you hooked on its thrilling suspense!
9. Beautiful Disaster – Jamie McGuire
Beautiful Disaster is a New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling novel about a good girl in love with a bad boy.
Abby Abernathy is an ambitious college student who has worked hard to keep her past in the past.
She’s the last girl you’d expect to be caught up in the drama life of Travis Maddox.
Travis is the complete opposite of Abby -a bad boy with good looks, a clean-cut appearance, and covered in tattoos. Despite being warned off him by your mum, Abby finds herself irresistibly drawn to him and his daring lifestyle.
Instigating a bet between them, Travis challenges her to move in with him if she loses or go celibate for a month if he does.
Neither of them predicted the consequences their gamble would bring – setting up an intense story of anguished love and forbidden romance!
Related Reading: Books Like Beautiful Disaster
10. Hopeless – Colleen Hoover
Colleen Hoover is one of the best angst romance authors of the modern day. If you are ever dreaming of your first love, then Hopeless is an angsty romance novel you will love.
When Sky discovers Dean Holder, a troubled boy who sparks emotions in her that she can’t comprehend, she begins to realize that he might not be as turbulent as he appears.
This angst romance novel has a storyline that will leave you pining for more. The characters are so relatable, and the story is full of tender moments that play on the heartstrings.
If you haven’t read any of Colleen Hoover’s work yet, this is a great first read. If you think this sounds enticing, then you might like some other books by Colleen Hoover such as It Ends With Us.
11. Bared To You – Sylvia Day
For fans of the Fifty Shades of Grey series, Bared to You will send your heart racing.
An unyielding possessive man determined to be in control and a compliant submissive woman that succumbs without resistance – it’s a passionate love story full of intensity and heartache between two lovers who are as powerful together as they are destructive apart.
Be prepared for some fiery moments as this book will transport you into an alluring world of romance and boundless desire!
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Final Word on Light Angst Romance Books
So there you have it, those are my top light angst romance novels! Whether you’re looking for something sweet and long-lasting, or a steamy and sultry, you’ll find something for everyone on this list.
If you love angsty romance books but want something a little darker and exciting, you might like these biker romance books.
Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments.