Looking for epic fantasy books with good romance? These books are the best with amazing romance AND great plots.
I am not a romance reader. Typically, I prefer books where romance is a sub-plot or just non-existent. When I do read fantasy romance though, I want good healthy relationships. Personally, I don’t like the toxic, alpha male, type romances that seem very common in a lot of fantasy romance books. I want Fantasy books with good romance. Those that have loving couples that can communicate and worth through their problems. Not to say that these books are perfect and that the romance doesn’t have some issues, but just that they are more believable to me and healthier in nature.
So if you are like me and want fantasy books with romances that are healthy and fun, then check these books out. Of course, these are not strictly fantasy romance books, they are fantasy books with a good romance subplot. The romance in these will, for the most part, be a secondary aspect of the plot, but an important one nonetheless.
Fantasy Books with Good Romance
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City of Brass
We follow Nahri, an orphan con-woman on the streets of Cairo. One day she accidentally summons a djinn warrior and he has to take her away to the magical city of Devabad. There she learns who she truly is.
While this book isn’t heavy on romance, I love what is there. There’s somewhat of a love triangle, but not in the traditional way. Honestly, this is one of the few books where a “love triangle” really works for me. Both romantic options are great and horrible in their own ways. I loved how the relationships changed, grew, and matured over the course of the three books.
If you want an epic fantasy with morally grey characters and a beautiful love story on the side, then this one may be for you.
The Bone Maker
It seems like no matter what book recommendation list I am making, I always am able to slip one or even two Sarah Beth Durst books in there. That’s because they are just so good. She is a phenomenal writer and does a lot of creative things in her fantasy stories.
The Bone Maker is a standalone fantasy book that follows a group of heroes 25 years AFTER they defeated the big bad and saved the world. We get to explore what happens after the end of most YA fantasy books and it is fascinating!
There are a few lovely romances in this book. We have married couples and get to explore their love and dynamics throughout the story. I especially love seeing how they sacrifice for one another no matter what. We get so much packed into this one book and a satisfying ending!
So if you want to see what happens after the teens save the world, then pick this one up!
Queen of Blood
You should have guessed it, Queen of Blood is our second Sarah Beth Durst book on this fantasy books with good romance list!
This book is very light on the romance, but the series does have 2 lovely relationships that I absolutely adore!
In Book 1, Queen of Blood, we have the start of a very sweet innocent romance that lasts through the full series. Then in book two, we get the development of a different romance between two older characters.
What I love about the secondary romance is that it isn’t a “first love” type romance. Each one has had a life before, they have past romances that have failed, children even! Both romance plots in this series are very well done and really add to the overall enjoyment of the series.
House in the Cerulean Sea
In this queer fantasy book, we follow Linus, a social worker for magical children. He lives a boring and bland life, but that is upended when he is tasked to spend a month at a very special orphanage. There he meets some very unique children and their mysterious guardian Arthur.
This is a male/male romance and it is just so sweet and innocent and I adore it so much. If you want a good fantasy pallet cleanser book that isn’t dark or epic in scope, then this may be right up your alley.
If you read and love this book, then I also recommend picking up TJ Klune’s other recent book, Under the Whispering Door. It has another well-written and sweet male/male romance that is the epitome of the sunshine and gloom trope that I love so much.
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
This may be the most romance-heavy book on this list. While I don’t typically read fantasy romance where romance is the main focus, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue may be the closest I get.
Addie LaRue is a girl in France in the 1700s, she does not want what she is supposed to. She has no desire to marry and settle down, she would rather travel and live her own way. On the day she is to be married, she ends up calling upon an old god, one who grants her wish for immortality but in return, he makes it so no one will ever remember her. Once she is out of eyeshot of someone, they forget who she is.
One day, 300 years later, she meets a boy who remembers. And there begins our epic love story for the ages.
This book did things to my soul. It had me bawling by the end and I loved every single minute of it! If you want to know more, I have a spoiler-free Addie LaRue review video you can check out too!
Brandon Sanderson isn’t really known for his romance, but Warbreaker is probably one of the cutest romances in an epic fantasy that I have read so far.
Giving a short synopsis for this book is hard since it is such an epic fantasy, even as a standalone. But when it comes to romance, we follow Siri as becomes the politically promised wife to the mysterious God-King.
This relationship really flips everything you expect on its head. Siri is a strong female character and learns quickly when thrown into a new and unexpected situation. The God-King is a fantastic and surprising character as well.
If you want to check this one out, check out my cosmere reading order to see where it fits into Sanderson’s large fantasy universe.
I know I said that Sanderson isn’t really a romance writer, but this is the second of his books on my list. The Mistborn series has some really great romance in it, even if it is not a romance series.
Mistborn actually has a few romances that I enjoy. Era 1 of Mistborn has a really great pretty central romance that is actually a pretty large part of books two and three in the trilogy. I love this one since it is a sunshine/grump in a way but is a very healthy relationship with good communication in the long run.
Mistborn Era 2, which takes place 300 years after the last book in the first trilogy, also has a wonderful romance. It isn’t as prominent as the one in Era 1, but it is still one of my favorite romances in a fantasy book.
I feel like this series has been talked about so much that even giving a synopsis is kind of not needed.
An Ember in the Ashes
Moving back into a YA fantasy, we are going to talk a little about An Ember in the Ashes.
This YA fantasy romance is one of my favorites. We have enemies to lovers in a politically bleak world during the midst of a revolution.
Again, the romance is pretty central to this story but there is so much more to it than that. Laia and Elias are from two different worlds who end up coming together in this series to try to change the world for the better.
I feel like this is a book that comes up a lot when people mention fantasy romance, and for good reason.
Ship of Smoke and Steel
Ship of Smoke and Steel is a really cool fantasy book with a very unique magic system. In this world, magic users are conscripted to work for the crown, but our main character decides that isn’t for her.
She lives as a gang leader and supports her younger sister. When she is captured, she makes a deal that her sister will be spared if she is able to steal an infamous ghost ship.
On this ship, she meets all of the other people who have been sent there to live. She ingrains herself into their society, makes a name for herself, and even ends up meeting and falling for a princess!
Again, there isn’t a lot of romance, but there is just enough for me.
In this book, we have a LOT of romance. We follow Vallah, a library attendant in a palace. One day, she inadvertently saves the crowned prince, tying her life to his accidentally! This leads to the discovery of her long-hidden magic and the start of a political war that no one saw coming.
I love that the central romance of this book goes through a lot and still works hard to make it work. They go through ups and downs, but this couple always fights to make it work, even when times are really tough.
Bloody Rose is the second book in the Band series. We follow Rose and her band as they go on tour killing monsters and taking on quests.
Rose is a tough lady, but when she is around Freecloud, we get to see a slightly softer side to her. We even learn that she is a mother, which really adds a lot of depth to her character.
If you haven’t yet, pick up Kings of the Wyld, then dive right into Bloody Rose!
Romance may not be my thing, but these books are some of my favorites.