This week’s Sapphic Reading Challenge features characters who love books.
Most of them work with books for a living. They are writers, librarians, book editors, cover designers, audiobook narrators, bookstore owners/employees, comic book artists, literary agents, translators, book bloggers, reviewers, or avid readers.
Read up on the rules of the Sapphic Reading Challenge
Remember that you can either read one of the 15 books listed below or pick another sapphic book with a protagonist who’s a book lover.
15 sapphic books with a character who’s a book lover
I put together a list of 15 novels featuring a protagonist who works with books. I hope you find at least one you’ll enjoy.
Good Enough to Eat by Jae
Robin’s New Year’s resolution to change her eating habits is as unusual as she is. Unlike millions of other women, she isn’t tempted by chocolate or junk food. She’s a vampire, determined to fight her craving for a pint of O negative.
When she goes to an AA meeting, hoping for advice on fighting her addiction, she meets Alana, a woman who battles her own demons.
Despite their determination not to get involved, the attraction is undeniable.
Is it just bloodlust that makes Robin think Alana looks good enough to eat, or is it something more? Will it even matter once Alana finds out who Robin really is?
I Love You, Lola Bloom by Rosy Dee
After a series of disastrous relationships, designer Maddison Appleby is fed up with everything love has had to offer, and can’t help but feel she’s destined to be alone forever. That is, until a chance encounter at a local book club sparks an unexpected connection with the beautiful Ruby Wilson – aka renowned lesfic author, Lola Bloom.
Maddison can’t believe her luck when Ruby asks her to design her new book cover, and as they spend more time together, Maddison sees a glimmer of hope for her dispirited love life.
However, her hopes are soon dashed, and to top it all off, her past makes an unwelcome reappearance which threatens to make her world come crashing down.
Will Maddison get her long-awaited happily ever after? Or will she admit defeat and purchase her one-way ticket to Singledom?
Safe Haven by Ellen Hoil (bookstore owner)
When lives intersect what promise, love, and damage can they cause each other and overcome?
Brigid Fitzpatrick had made a life for herself following the death of her soulmate keeping busy with her bookstore, family, and friends. She had not considered her life missing anything until two things happen, a mysterious stranger comes to town and Brigid starts receiving attention from an unknown admirer.
Samantha Bailey walks the streets day after day and Brigid is filled with many questions. The most important is why does the woman never stop her seemingly aimless journey? As Brigid’s friendship with Samantha grows, so does the attention from the unknown admirer. An admirer watching from the dark shadows.
Brigid finds her feelings for Samantha moving from friendship to something more. But will she let herself move on, or will she cling to the comfortable life she has made for herself? Can love overcome the pain and anguish that comes next?
The Other Side of Forestlands Lake by Carolyn Elizabeth
As kids, best friends Willa Dunn and Lee Chandler spend every summer together at the idyllic Upstate New York community of Forestlands Lake, nestled in the foothills of the Taconic Mountains. During the summer before they turn sixteen—just as the two are discovering that there might be something more to their friendship—a tragic accident befalls Willa’s family and without warning, Willa and Lee’s world is torn apart.
Twenty-five years later Willa is a successful author of the young adult ghost stories she loved to read as a child. She returns to the lake looking for a writer’s retreat and an opportunity to connect with her troubled teenage sister, Nicole.
Lee, now a single mother to her wise-beyond-her-years teenage daughter Maggie, is the director of the summer camp on the other side of Forestlands Lake.
Before Willa and Nicole even have the chance to unpack, their plans are upset by a mysterious young girl, a near drowning, and a surprise reunion. Soon Willa and Lee are working to protect the girls, reconcile their past and unearth the secrets surrounding Forestlands Lake—putting old ghosts to rest once and for all.
A Bittersweet Garden by Caren J. Werlinger
Nora McNeill has always dreamed of exploring her Irish roots. When she finally gets the opportunity to spend a summer in the village where her grandparents grew up, the experience promises to live up to her very high expectations. Except for the ghost that is haunting her rented cottage and is soon invading her dreams.
Briana Devlin has arranged her life the way she likes it: a good dog, good mates, and work with horses. There’s no room in her life for a relationship. Especially with an annoyingly clumsy—and attractive—American who is only going to be around for a few months.
The weeks fly by, and Nora’s ghost becomes more demanding, seeking her help in solving the mystery surrounding her death. Briana watches as Nora becomes more wrapped up in the past, seeming to fade away before her eyes.
Past and present are on a collision course, leaving Nora and Briana caught in a ghostly intrigue that could cost them not only their chance of a future together, but their very lives.
Inspiration Takes A Vacation by Annette Mori
Abby Prentice is suffering through the worst writer’s block in her entire career. After deciding to escape her home’s confines, she takes a walk on the beach and meets a mysterious woman who, Abby believes, must be the reincarnation of Helen of Troy. After the strange woman claims that she is on vacation, Abby quickly offers her personal services as a tour guide. Evasive about where she lives and why she has chosen Forks, Washington, as the destination for her three-day vacation, the stranger is only mildly annoying to Abby.
Feeling burnt out, Musetta desperately needs a vacation. Her boss reluctantly agrees to three days. On the first day of her adventure, she is delighted to almost literally run into her favorite writer and begin her three-day adventure. As she spends more time with Abby, she finds it increasingly difficult to return to her job despite the catastrophic consequences of leaving her position. For the first time, Musetta is falling in love.
Soon into their journey, both women notice something odd is happening all around them. Abby is not the only writer experiencing a block. Art in every form has come to a screeching halt in the Northwest. The media is forecasting an end to cultured civilization, beauty, and emotion as we know it. Will the women find a way to return inspiration to the Northwest, and does Musetta have the key to solving the crisis?
Hurricane Season by BJ Phillips
Shawn Richards (aka S.K. Richardson) is a romance author. She’s had her heart broken badly again and is done with love. Ditching San Francisco, she moves back home to Southwest Florida to get her feet back under her and finish her latest novel.
Carrie Alexander is a huge S.K. Richardson fan, but has no idea what she looks like. She does, however, like the looks of the new neighbor down the street, Shawn Richards.
Drawn to each other as friends, Shawn still tries to keep some distance in spite of what she’s beginning to feel for Carrie. Carrie isn’t the kind of woman you just have a fun night with and then move on. Carrie’s the kind you fall in love with and make love to, and live happily ever after with—but she just can’t let herself trust her heart yet. After all, the last time she fell for one of her fans, it ended badly.
Carrie is looking for ‘happy ever after’ just like in all those romance novels she reads. Shawn could be the one, or maybe Carrie’s fooling herself and there’s really no such thing as all that romantic stuff in Shawn’s books.
Shawn is afraid she can’t deliver on that ‘happy ever after’ she knows Carrie wants—and she wants, too, truth be told. Destiny might have given them a push when Carrie tripped at the local grocery store and literally fell into Shawn’s arms. But fear could cost Shawn the woman of her dreams.
Hero(ine) Addict by Blythe H. Warren
Harper Maxfield is going to change the world. But first she has to change her life.
Harper’s mundane job provides a steady paycheck but not much else—leaving her feeling frustrated, a little empty, and wondering how she let her girlfriend talk her into it in the first place. Her friends and family wonder how she let her girlfriend talk her into anything—especially a relationship. But how could she help falling for a gorgeous, successful doctor who saves kids from cancer?
At least Harper has her volunteer work with Mental Illness Allies to fulfill her. And if the big fundraiser she’s organizing is the success she hopes it will be, maybe it will end in a full-time position with Allies.
When comic book artist Eliot DeSanto isn’t thinking about superheroes, sidekicks and archrivals, she’s worried about her niece, whose recent cancer diagnosis has turned her life upside down. Eliot has no time for anything outside of work and family. But when eager humanitarian Harper asks for help with a fundraiser, Eliot finds herself unable to resist the attractive young woman.
Their work brings them closer together, but with so many obstacles between them, will they have the courage to follow their hearts?
My Lady Lipstick by Karin Kallmaker
Anita Topaz, Queen of the Bodice Rippers, is deliberately a woman of mystery. But pressure is mounting for Anita to reveal herself to her clamoring public. It’s scrutiny that writer Paris Ellison can’t allow, especially since the glamorous “Anita” is a work of pure fiction.
Lady Diana Beckinsale excels at disappearing into a good role. Especially if that role gets her close to certain objects she desires. When Diana proposes the perfect solution to Paris’s predicament, Paris is less than enthusiastic. She can’t let someone as unsettling and observant as Diana get too close.
But Diana is persistent. After all, if she and the handsome, secretive Paris both get what they want out of an unorthodox arrangement, then it’s a win-win for them both.
Homecoming by Celeste Castro
Destiny “Dusty” Del Carmen is a bestselling author and much sought-after speaker. An invitation to the Northwest Urban Indian Federation’s annual conference brings Dusty back to her “home” state of Idaho—the one place she swore she would never return to. Dusty does what she does best—smothers the painful memories of her past and picks up the smoking hot bartender at the local lesbian hangout.
Professor Morgan West is eager to attend the Federation’s annual conference and to meet the famous Destiny Del Carmen. A chance encounter leaves them trapped in a rustic cabin and Dusty has nowhere to run from her past pain—or her present fears. Will this accident of fate finally lead her home?
Sunsets and Shades by Erica Lee
Kinsley Scott is a lesbian romance author who doesn’t actually believe in love. While her alter ego, Laurel Lake, loves happy endings and epic love stories, Kinsley has a more cynical view of the world.
Grace Harper is a hopeless romantic hanging on every word of the lesbian romance novels she reads. She believes her happy ending is right around the corner if she can just move on from the ex who cheated on her. When Grace’s childhood best friend, Leah, suggests that she comes to Philly to get space from her ex, it seems like the perfect opportunity to start over, especially since Leah’s roommate is none other than Laurel Lake – Grace’s favorite romance author.
Grace quickly learns that people aren’t always how they appear online and is disappointed to find that Kinsley Scott is nothing like Laurel Lake. She’s rude and vulgar and, unfortunately, irresistibly sexy. There is also much more to her than meets the eye, and as the two grow closer, her tough exterior is quickly stripped away, revealing much more than Grace ever bargained for.
I Can’t Think Straight by Shamim Sarif
Spirited Christian Tala and shy Muslim Leyla could not be more different from each other, but the attraction is immediate and goes deeper than friendship.
Moving between Middle Eastern high society and London’s West End, this story explores the clashes between East and West, love and marriage, and convention and individuality creating a humorous and tender tale of unexpected love.
Crystal’s Heart by B.L. Miller & Verda Foster
Crystal Sheridan is a professional stripper, an alcoholic, a drug user, and homeless. Laura Taylor is a lesbian, professional writer, obsessive tidier, and control freak. Fate brings them together as improbably housemates.
Can Laura and Crystal break through their carefully constructed walls against the past and learn to get along and start to embrace life again?
Must Love Silence by Lucy Bexley
Reese Walker doesn’t like people. What she likes is silence and being left alone. The thing she loves most about recording audiobooks is that she doesn’t have to leave her Chicago apartment to do it. And she hasn’t for nearly a year. But with an unavoidable bill going to collections that puts her sister’s treatment at risk, she has no choice but to take a job that pushes her out of her comfort zone.
After a disastrous blow to her career, Arden Abbott needs a comeback. Step one: a successful book launch, including an audiobook. She doesn’t trust anyone else to oversee every aspect of the project. It has to be flawless. Arden knows she’s ready to resume the life she had before her dreams fell apart, all she has to do is prove it to everyone around her.
When Reese and Arden meet, sparks fly and then they combust. Will Reese crack under the constant pressure from Arden? Can she possibly read a sex scene with the woman who wrote it interrupting to correct her pronunciation of words she is saying 100% correctly? Or can they step outside their comfort zones long enough to meet in the middle…
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