This week’s Sapphic Reading Challenge features romance novels in which the characters never intended to become involved in a long-term relationship with each other. The romance starts with a one-night stand, a fling, or a friends-with-benefits arrangement.
The Ylva Publishing Sapphic Reading Challenge book list
Before we get to the recommended reading list for the “one-night stand to forever romance” category, take a look at the Ylva Publishing book list for the Sapphic Reading Challenge. My publisher put together a list of their books and how they fit into the categories of the Sapphic Reading Challenge. From “enemies to lovers” to “forced proximity,” they have nearly every category covered, even some of the Book Unicorn ones.
15 sapphic books featuring a “one-night stand to forever” romance novel
I put together a list of 15 “one-night stand to forever” romance novels. I hope you find at least one you’ll enjoy.
Just Physical by Jae
After being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, twenty-five-year-old Jill Corrigan takes herself off the romantic market. Not wanting to become a burden to a potential partner, she focuses on her career as an actress instead.
On the set of a disaster movie, she meets stunt woman Kristine “Crash” Patterson, whose easy smile instantly makes Jill wish things were different. Meanwhile, Crash is trained to fall, but she didn’t count on falling in love.
Despite their growing feelings for each other, Jill resolves to let Crash into her bed, but not her heart.
As they start to play with fire on and off camera, will they really be able to keep things just physical?
In Her Arms by Melissa Tereze
Reagan’s only plan, when she came alone to a lesbian bar in the city, was to knock back a few drinks far from her lonely country house. Looking around at the younger regulars, though, maybe it was a mistake to think this was a good place to start fresh.
Then she meets a beautiful woman with stunning brown eyes and the world’s cheesiest pickup lines. Before Reagan knows it, she’s spending one night of passion in a stranger’s bed. Then fleeing back to the country. Alone.
Frankie’s had enough of the city. Even the bar scene has gone stale, eclipsed by the memory of a black-haired, green-eyed woman who lit up her world—and disappeared. Needing a change of scene, Frankie sets out to rent a quaint country cottage.
That’s when she discovers her new landlord is Reagan. But a different Reagan. She’s cautious. Prickly. Afraid. Maybe the smart thing for Frankie to do is head straight back to the city. Or maybe it’s worth the risk to stay—and kiss away the walls Reagan’s built around her heart.
Vacation People by Cheri Ritz
Successful Chicago-based artist Lauren Hansen is on a layover in Las Vegas before heading to what was supposed to be the vacation of a lifetime with her partner. Until, that is, that partner became an ex.
Recovering from a nasty break-up herself, workaholic Penny Rothmoor agrees to meet Lauren for dinner, but only out of a sense of obligation to her mother.
One thing leads to another, and soon Penny finds herself on a plane, jetting off to meet Lauren for a week on the beautiful island of Hawaii—but strictly as friends, of course.
As the bikini-clad duo relaxes and gets to know each other better, they begin to realize that there’s more to enjoy in Hawaii than just sun and sand—and that king-size bed is looking awfully inviting. What is it about the words “no strings attached” that are sure to create a tangled mess of desire, mind-blowing pleasure, and the pain of separation?
Fare Game by Cade Haddock Strong
Kay Corbett is a newly minted vice president at Logan, one of the largest airlines in the world, and she’s fallen smack-dab in the middle of a massive plot to swindle the airline’s passengers and defraud its investors. There is only one way out. Earn the trust of the ringleader while simultaneously working to bring him down and put an end to his elaborate scheme.
Things get a lot more interesting and a lot more complicated when she becomes entangled with Riley Bauer, the brilliant beauty in Finance. They form an imposing team both in love and in the fight for justice. As they race against the clock, each woman must decide how much they are willing to risk in order to expose the truth.
Thursday Afternoons by Tracey Richardson
Thursdays aren’t simply another day of the week for Amy Spencer and Ellis Hall. Thursday afternoons sizzle with no-strings sex for the two women, who meet each week in a hotel room to forget their past—and their present.
The arrangement works perfectly for Amy, a busy surgeon who’s still smarting from a failed relationship. For Ellis, Thursday afternoons act as a pressure valve from her cutthroat job and the mistakes in her personal life she’s trying to rectify.
But soon the pair discover that their outside worlds are on a collision course with the carefully constructed world they’ve created on Thursday afternoons. What will happen when they discover the truth about each other? Will their weekly assignations come to a screeching halt, or will they turn into something much, much more…
Being Hers by Anna Stone
Melanie has spent her entire life working her way up in the world. By day, she studies at law school, and by night, she serves drinks at an exclusive club to afford her tuition. But the hard-working Melanie will never admit her true desire: to escape from her fast-paced, high-pressure life, if only for a moment.
When Melanie meets Vanessa, a glamorous executive and a regular at the club, she is drawn to the enigmatic black-haired woman. Vanessa is relentless in pursuing what she wants—and what she wants is Melanie. Soon, Melanie finds herself caught up in Vanessa’s sensual games of submission.
Melanie insists that her affair with Vanessa remain purely physical. But as her limits are tested, so is the line between lust and love. When ghosts from the past reappear, both women must face their deepest fears. Can Melanie surrender her everything to Vanessa, or will old wounds prove too great?
Country Love by A.M. Nicholson
Alexandra Meeks has always followed her heart, even if it led to heartache and disappointment. However, everyone has their limits, and after a while even the most carefree of souls puts up walls, or makes rules to keep from getting hurt again.
Megan Wilkins has devoted her life to work, never making time for family, friends, or love. Getting stuck in a small town has a way of helping put things in perspective and a slower pace can lead to all kinds of healing.
When City Slicker meets Country Girl they’ll both learn valuable lessons about judging others and that love can be found in the most unpredictable places.
Love Is for Later by Arizona Tape
Casual is the new black.
No strings attached, that’s the way Nix likes her life. Determined not to fall for anyone she sleeps with, casual is just her thing.
Harper is looking for a fresh start and a new city means just that. This is her chance to re-invent herself.
The thin line between friendship and more blurs when Nix and Harper dance around each other in an LGBT club. It’s all fun and games until one of them catches feelings, but that’s not what they agreed on…
Nothing But a Fling by Sabrina Kane
Vanessa Murray owns La Vida Mocha, the hip new coffeeshop in Carlsbad, California. But after the Covid pandemic hit, business is practically non-existent.
Megan Baldwin started the year having her heart shattered by her girlfriend but now she has just gotten an exciting new job promotion which will force her to leave Carlsbad and move to New York City.
But one day, Megan walks into La Vida Mocha and lays eyes on the gorgeous barista behind the counter. Their attraction to each other is out of this world.
But with Megan leaving California soon for her dream job in New York, and Vanessa needing to focus solely on making sure her coffeeshop survives Covid, both women only want a harmless, no-strings-attached summer fling. Just a bit of fun.
But what happens when a meaningless fling develops into so much more for each of these women? Does the other woman feel the same way? Or is this truly nothing but a fling?
Out of Practice by Carsen Taite
Attorney Abby Keane’s vacation is perfect, especially her steamy interlude with a beautiful stranger. But her newfound zen crumbles when her biggest client, a chain of bridal stores, leaves hundreds of brides without dresses. As if reentry isn’t bad enough, a new wedding blogger is doing her best to stoke the anger of the already unhappy brides, and has chosen Abby as the villain.
Roxanne Daly’s blog has finally hit the sweet spot, and her popularity is soaring. With a regular TV spot on the line, she’ll do whatever it takes to impress the network producers. Running point for a horde of angry brides against a hotshot lawyer seems like the perfect plan until her crusade collides with Abby, the woman she hasn’t been able to stop thinking about since she left her in a tropical paradise.
The Fling by Rebekah Weatherspoon
Three months before her wedding to her post-college sweetheart, reality show producer Annie Collins finally acknowledges her dormant desires. Wrapped in the arms of another woman—her trainer, Oksana Gorinkov—Annie experiences a physical heat she never knew existed.
Soon the one-night stand meant to be her final farewell to the single life stretches into a consuming month-long affair, the genuine intensity of which neither woman can ignore. Annie sees where her heart belongs, and though the objections from her family and friends and the scars from Oksana’s ex threaten to drive them back to their respective sides of Los Angeles, Annie knows she must fight for this relationship, a real love worth much more than any fantasy she’s ever dreamed up.
Unbridled by Fox Brison
Still reeling from catching her partner in flagrante with another woman, veterinarian Haley Jones travels to San Francisco to visit her sister, Jennifer, and lick her wounds. But instead of receiving the support and comfort she craves, Jennifer delivers another monumental shock to Haley’s already traumatised system.
Left to fend for herself in a strange city, she accepts the invitation from Jennifer’s roommate to join her for a night out on the town. There she meets Dani Robbins, a beautiful cowgirl who is no stranger to casual dalliances.
Sparks instantly fly between the two women, an undeniable attraction which Haley finds impossible to ignore. With the words of everyone telling her to let her hair down and have some fun ringing in her ears, she begins to wonder if Dani could be the answer to all her problems.
However, spending one incredible night indulging in her fantasies, only leads to the beginning of Haley’s troubles.
No Strings by Gerri Hill
One mistake leads to a year of exile…
Used to the busy playground of Winter Park, police chief Reese Daniels is shipped off to sleepy Lake City, Colorado. She takes the job of sheriff seriously, but makes it clear to one and all: this year is just a blip in her life. When it’s done, she’s gone.
Forest Ranger M. Z. Morgan has lived in Lake City long enough to be considered a local. The pace, the quiet and the many friends make life there well worth the lack of dating material. A girlfriend would still be nice, and the new sheriff is easy on the eyes. It’s entirely natural for Morgan and Reese to be friendly, but Reese’s repeated reminders that she’s not sticking around make it impossible for anything more between them.
That is, until they strike a no strings bargain. Some guaranteed exchange of heat as the long winter sets in seems just what they need to pass the time. So what if it’s the best sex they’ve ever had? It’s still only temporary. They won’t mistake sex for more, even if it only gets better—month after month. After month.
No Strings—it seemed like a good idea at the time.
Spindrift by Anna Burke
Morgan Donovan had everything she ever wanted: a dream job as a large animal veterinarian, awesome friends, and a loving and supportive fiancée. But it all comes crashing down when her fiancée dumps her after realizing that Morgan’s job will always come first. And, while Morgan still has the job and friends, her heart is broken into a million tiny pieces
Emilia Russo is a burned-out shelter vet. When the unexpected death of her father triggers a mental breakdown that hastens the end of her relationship, she retreats to his house in Seal Cove, Maine. She plans on spending the summer renovating it while she figures out how to pull the pieces of her life back together. But when she runs into Morgan at the dock where her father’s sailboat is moored, her plans for a quiet summer of healing and reflection sink like a stone—the attraction is immediate and obvious, and Emilia finds herself slipping seamlessly into Morgan’s world
Each woman knows this fling will end when Emilia returns to Boston at the end of the summer, but they’re unprepared for the intensity and depth of their attraction. And, as the gales of fall begin to drive leaves like spindrift upon Seal Cove, Morgan and Emilia must each come to terms with how much they’re willing to give up to stay together.
Back to September by Melissa Brayden
Building a bridge between two worlds can be tricky.
Hannah Shephard likes her life, her job, and her perfectly cozy apartment around the corner from her shop. She’s never been one to take big risks and would much rather stay in on a Friday night with a warm cup of decaf and her favorite mystery novel, so why do her friends insist she needs more? Plus, Hannah has bigger problems to focus on. She’s in trouble. Well, her bookstore is, and if she doesn’t find a way to bring in some more cash, she’ll be closing the doors of A Likely Story for good.
When world famous romance novelist Parker Bristow accepts her request to come in for a signing, Hannah might finally be able to drum up some much-needed attention and save the shop. What she didn’t anticipate was an unexpected evening and a woman she wouldn’t soon forget. A real romance is off the table. Parker is flashy, sought after, and Hannah is just, well, Hannah. But for Parker, it seems like Hannah might be a safe place to fall. The question is, what kind of falling are they doing?
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