Sapphic enemies-to-lovers romance novels (Sapphic Reading Challenge #1)

sapphic enemies-to-lovers romance

 

Welcome to the Sapphic Reading Challenge 2021! I hope you had a good start into the new year and are ready for the first category: enemies-to-lovers romance novels!

In an enemies-to-lovers romance, the two main characters start out hating or disliking each other. Maybe their personalities are clashing, or they are rivals in their jobs, or they have a history that turned them into enemies. The protagonists might spend a portion of the book butting heads, but the sexual tension between them is undeniable.

 

The rules of the Sapphic Reading Challenge

Before you pick a book for the enemies-to-lovers category, here’s a quick rundown of the rules of the Sapphic Reading Challenge:

The goal is to read sapphic books that fit as many of the 50 categories listed below as possible. You can read ebooks, paperbacks, or audiobooks; and they can be new-to-you books or re-reads. I’ll post book recommendations for a new category once a week. Of course, you could also just read whatever books you want and then, afterwards, see what categories they fit into.

Depending on how many sapphic books you manage to read in 2021, you can earn different badges and book prizes.

For the longer version of the rules, a bonus level you could go for, and an explanation of the prizes you can win, read the kickoff post here.

If you have any questions about the Sapphic Reading Challenge, take a look at the FAQs.

Are you ready to get started?

 

Keep track of the books you’re reading for the Sapphic Reading Challenge

The first thing you might want to do is to download this PDF that allows you to keep track of the books you read this year. You can either type in the PDF or print it out and fill it in by hand.

If you’d like to have a digital version of the book journal I created for the Sapphic Reading Challenge, you can download it here. Please note: This is for personal use only. If you’d like to share it with anyone else, please direct them to this post.

 

15 sapphic enemies-to-lovers romance novels

I put together a list of enemies-to-lovers romances that I hope you’ll enjoy. Remember that you can either read one of the 15 books listed below or pick another sapphic enemies-to-lovers romance.

 

Paper Love by Jae

Susanne Wolff isn’t thrilled when her mother sends her all the way across the country to Freiburg to save her uncle’s stationery store from bankruptcy. Freiburg is too provincial for her taste, and besides, pen and paper are outdated anyway.

Anja Lamm, Paper Love’s only full-time employee, takes an instant dislike to the arrogant, digital-loving snob who’s supposed to be her temporary boss.

But thanks to a meddling cat, a business trip to a stationery fair, and an armada of origami boats, Anja soon starts to see beneath Susanne’s aloof exterior, and Susanne discovers how sexy pens and notebooks can be—at least when Anja handles them.

As the end of Susanne’s three-month stay approaches, will she stick to her plan to leave, or will she open her heart to more than just paper love?

Available at:

Ylva Publishing

Amazon

Apple Books

Audible

 

Tell Me How You Really Feel by Aminah Mae Safi

The first time Sana Khan asked out a girl—Rachel Recht—it went so badly that she never did it again. Rachel is a film buff and aspiring director, and she’s seen Carrie enough times to learn you can never trust cheerleaders (and beautiful people). Rachel was furious that Sana tried to prank her by asking her on a date.

But when it comes time for Rachel to cast her senior project, she realizes that there’s no more perfect lead than Sana—the girl she’s sneered at in the halls for the past three years. And poor Sana—she says yes. She never did really get over that first crush, even if Rachel can barely stand to be in the same room as her.

Told in alternative viewpoints and set against the backdrop of Los Angeles in the springtime, when the rainy season rolls in and the Santa Ana’s can still blow—these two girls are about to learn that in the city of dreams, anything is possible—even love.

Available at:

Amazon

Apple Books

 

Heart Failure by Chris Zett

Dr. Jess Riley’s life is perfect, ticking all the boxes—successful cardiologist, newborn daughter, and a luxurious condo. That is, until she suddenly collapses from acute heart failure. Her entire world crumples along with her exhausted body.

Jess is forced to face facts—she can’t keep working endless hours, and she’ll have to move back home to recover.

To her shock, her mother has already taken in Lena Walker, a struggling artist who isn’t a stranger to heartbreak either.

At first, an unimpressed Jess resents Lena’s cheerful presence. Gradually, though, the two women form a tentative friendship over tai chi, picking fruit, and evening walks with the baby. A sexy massage leads to friends-with-benefits fun. But is it all too soon? Should two barely mended souls try to risk a future together?

Available at:

Ylva Publishing

Amazon

Apple Books

Audible

 

Crier’s War by Nina Varela

After the War of Kinds ravaged the kingdom of Rabu, the Automae, designed to be the playthings of royals, usurped their owners’ estates and bent the human race to their will.

Now Ayla, a human servant rising in the ranks at the House of the Sovereign, dreams of avenging her family’s death…by killing the sovereign’s daughter, Lady Crier.

Crier was Made to be beautiful, flawless, and to carry on her father’s legacy. But that was before her betrothal to the enigmatic Scyre Kinok, before she discovered her father isn’t the benevolent king she once admired, and most importantly, before she met Ayla.

Now, with growing human unrest across the land, pressures from a foreign queen, and an evil new leader on the rise, Crier and Ayla find there may be only one path to love: war.

Available at:

Amazon

Apple Books

Audible

 

Line of Duty by VK Powell

What happens when a police officer’s fight for justice conflicts with an ER doctor’s commitment to patient care?

Police officer Finley Masters wants to interview an injured suspect and make an arrest so she can move on to the next case. As long as she keeps closing cases she can hide the pain of caring for her alcoholic father. Dr. Dylan Carlyle dedicates herself to healing the sick and looking after her family. She doesn’t have time for dating, especially not a reckless cop who thinks she’s God’s gift to women. When Finley Masters strolls into the emergency room making demands, Dylan protects her turf and her heart.

A tragic incident brings them together, but their feelings keep them coming back.

Available at:

Bold Strokes Books

Amazon

Apple Books

Audible

 

All at Sea by Cheyenne Blue

An enthralling, opposites-attract lesbian romance about what lies beneath.

Stevie Sterling is having a day from hell. Snubbed—yet again—by her unsupportive parents, she runs out on their posh party and takes refuge on a deserted yacht. Waking the next day with the world’s worst hangover, Stevie finds herself far from shore.

As if being trapped on the yacht in only her party dress isn’t bad enough, Stevie’s frantic that she’ll miss the first day of her new job as a nurse. She has so much to prove in her career—to herself and her parents.

The yacht’s cute but unimpressed captain, Kaz Malone—an eco-warrior who hits the seas with Sinbad the cat—is on a mission: There’s a nuclear-waste-dumping tanker to harass.

Kaz is as single-minded as she is stubborn and she’s not about to turn around for some stowaway with a new job. Hell, no. Saving the planet comes first.

But perhaps there’s more than one way to a destination?

Available at:

Ylva Publishing

Amazon

Apple Books

Audible

 

Unadulterated Something by MJ Duncan

Emma Beauchamp and Campbell Jordan’s rivalry on the ice was legendary. Retirement should have closed that chapter of their lives, but when Campbell joins the faculty at Stonebridge—the prestigious Berkshires boarding school where Emma now teaches—it takes on a brand new life.

There’s plenty of distrust and lingering animosity, but as circumstances force them to find a way to not only coexist, but work together, Emma and Campbell find that being on the same team isn’t as awful as they’d feared. Will their years spent battling it out for team and country be too much to overcome? Or will they finally acknowledge the truth behind the electric connection they share?

Available at:

Amazon

 

Falling Slowly by Lila Bruce

Badly wounded in Afghanistan when the helicopter she is piloting goes down under enemy fire, Captain Quinn Briscoe is struggling to rebuild her life. Facing not only a disfiguring injury, but a medical discharge and the end of a serious relationship, Quinn increasingly shuts herself—and her heart—off from the rest of the world. Her first meeting with lovely, self-confident and successful business owner Alison Jenkins is disastrous, and Quinn feels an instant antipathy for the woman, along with an undeniable attraction.

Trying to get along for the sake of her sister Rebekah, who’s gone to work for Allie, Quinn offers to fly the attractive boutique owner to a family wedding. However, what should have been a quick one day trip to the mountains of North Carolina suddenly turns into a long weekend at a romantic lodge. When a series of circumstances makes it increasingly clear that Quinn won’t be able to deny the growing passion between them much longer, will she be able to put the scars of the past aside to build a relationship with Allie worth fighting for?

Available at:

Amazon

Audible

 

The Brutal Truth by Lee Winter

Take one ice queen media-mogul boss, an assistant with a crush on her, throw in a truth bet, and as their secrets pour out in this slow-burn lesbian romance, neither woman will be the same again.

Australian crime reporter Maddie Grey is working the night shift, out of her depth in New York, miserable, and secretly crushing on her twice-married, media-mogul employer.

Elena Bartell is a brilliant, fierce, ice queen boss who eats failing newspapers for breakfast and believes to her core that everything would be much simpler if people told each other the whole, unvarnished truth.

As work takes them to Australia, Maddie is goaded into a brief, seemingly harmless bet with her enigmatic boss—where they can’t lie to each other. The bet backfires spectacularly as Elena realizes that the brutal truth might not be what she wanted after all.

A beautiful lesbian workplace romance about the lies we tell ourselves.

Available at:

Ylva Publishing

Amazon

Apple Books

Audible

 

Anyone But You by KG MacGregor

An underground pipeline has ruptured, spilling oily sludge into Minnesota’s pristine Lake Bunyan. Taking the media’s heat for Nations Oil is Corporate Communications Director Cathryn Mack, an old pro when it comes to spinning the facts in her company’s favor.

Stuck in Duluth to handle the press during eight weeks of cleanup, she finds a silver lining when Stacie Pilardi pops up on SappHere, a mobile app that seeks out nearby lesbians. Stacie is smart, funny, sexy as hell, and wants a longterm relationship as much as Cathryn—which is to say, not at all.

A perfect arrangement, until they realize they’re rivals—Stacie is head of the Clean Energy Action Network, in town to protest the greed and recklessness of oil companies and the havoc they wreak on the environment.

It’s best for everyone involved if they end this, and that’s exactly what they intend to do. Eventually…

Available at:

Bella Books

Amazon

Apple Books

 

A Heart to Trust by A.L. Brooks

What happens when you find out your stuck-up, blissfully straight colleague may be none of those things? A delicious enemies-to-lovers, lesbian workplace romance.

Change is not Jenny Quinn’s strong suit, but she’s happy enough with her easy-going life, friends, and job as a TV production assistant. That is until a company shake-up foists the infuriating Olivia Sinclair on her. The woman is uptight, snobby, and has some perfect and famous motor-racing husband.

TV and theater producer Olivia moved to New York from the UK to marry her longtime friend. It’s a sham marriage, a favor to a man she loves as a brother, but the strain is beginning to take its toll. How can she even meet women when she’s the picture of heterosexual bliss? Add in her stressful new job, an irritating colleague called Jenny, who thinks being goofy is some kind of admirable work ethic, and life can be a grind some days. The worst part isn’t the office politics or clashing personalities, but the fact there’s an attraction between both women that’s gradually becoming impossible to ignore.

So…should they stop ignoring it? That would mean learning to trust your heart that this is the right woman. And that’s a huge step.

Available at:

Amazon

 

Exception to the Rule by Cindy Rizzo

What will keep you safe—and sane—when you find yourself in a new and unfamiliar place convinced you’ll never find anyone like you?

For Robin and Tracy, it’s the rules they set for themselves as they begin their first semester at Adams University near Boston.

Robin is determined to hide in her room writing until she can get back to her homeless gay friends in New York City, whose easy exchange of sex and friendship inspires her creativity. She’s sworn off perfect princesses like Tracy Patterson, no matter how attractive she finds the mysterious Southerner on her hall with the long blonde hair and tight jeans.

And Tracy has no interest in cynical, smart-mouthed Northerners like Robin. She has her own set of rules—fine-tuned back home in North Carolina where she had a fake boyfriend and an uncomplicated string of older female lovers, including her mother’s best friend. Here at college, she already has her first conquest planned, and it’s certainly not Robin Greene.

This is a love story about two young women who can only find their true selves by finding one another. But are Robin and Tracy willing to give up all they think they know in order to find happiness?

Sometimes in life, the person who will matter most is the one who’s an exception to the rule.

Available at:

Amazon

 

Bait and Switch by Blythe H. Warren

Full-time marine biologist and part-time heartbreaker Liv Cucinelli knows that there are plenty of fish in the sea. So why can’t she seem to escape the lure of the one woman she hates the most?

When Liv is unexpectedly reunited with Mira Butler—the homophobic princess who ruined Liv’s college career—the last thing she wants is to spend even a second in the company of her former nemesis. Having loathed Mira for years, she’s not prepared to forgive her, let alone pursue a friendship. But Mira, who is oblivious to the destruction she caused, refuses to leave Liv alone.

Once Liv learns the truth about their shared past, she begins to see there is more to Mira than she could have ever anticipated.

Can they overcome their stormy history to become friends? Or maybe even more?

Available at:

Bella Books

Amazon

Apple Books

 

Other Girls by Avery Brooks

Once upon a time, Sam and Ashley were other girls.

Three years after the loss of her wife to a brain aneurysm, 34-year-old Samantha Parker focuses her energy on caring for her young son, Jake. She can’t imagine ever falling in love again, so she focuses on putting one foot in front of the other and being the best mom she can be. It’s not a perfect life, but as long as her son is happy and her softball team keeps winning, everything is fine. That is, until Ashley Valence, the girl who bullied Sam throughout high school, moves back to New Orleans and joins the softball team. As tensions rise on the field, unexpected chemistry between the two women begins to grow.

No matter how much Sam wants to hate Ashley for the pain and anguish those teenage taunts caused, Ashley’s eyes hold only warmth now. And, as Sam slowly introduces Ashley into her life with Jake, she begins to let go of the past. But as their relationship progresses, all of the former hurts and resentments resurface for Sam, and she lashes out at Ashley. Sam understands that her anger is a byproduct of the events of the past and that Ashley isn’t the same girl she used to be. But when Sam begins to realize that she’s fallen in love with Ashley, she has to decide if she can truly trust her heart and find happiness with the woman who once hurt her so deeply.

Available at:

Bywater Books

Amazon

Apple Books

 

44 Hours by Donna Jay

The universe is definitely trying to punish Jennifer Andrews. Her new colleague, Ellaine Baxter, is not only an annoying, ambitious hard-ass, she’s the woman who broke Jennifer’s best friend’s heart. Now, for added torture, they have to drive to a teambuilding conference together.

On their three-hour journey, things go from tense to catastrophic after an unscheduled stop in New Zealand’s wildly beautiful Kaimanawa Forest. Getting lost is just the start of the nightmare.

For forty-four exhausting hours, the warring pair must find a way to work together. They might even survive…if they don’t kill each other first.

An enemies-to-lovers romance about finding love with the person you least expect.

Available at:

Amazon

Apple Books

 

Leave a comment

Leave a comment and let us know which book you’ll be reading for the “enemies-to-lovers romance” category!

 

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Happy reading!

Jae

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24 thoughts on “Sapphic enemies-to-lovers romance novels (Sapphic Reading Challenge #1)”

  1. Seems the ideal opportunity to read books by authors I haven’t read before, so I thought I would start with A.L. Brooks. Thanks for doing this, it’s a great way to expand the library and an author’s reach!

    Reply
  2. Great selection. I esp. love that you through in some choices off the beaten track. It is fun to discover new books / authors.
    One of my fav enemies to lovers is Fletcher Delancey‘s Without a Front.
    Thank you for all the work.

    Reply
  3. Thanks for the suggestions. I love finding new authors. I have read several of the books, but not all. And thanks for putting this challenge together.

    Reply
  4. I have read Unadulterated Something by MJ Duncan and highly recommend it.
    I have also read Anyone But You by KG MacGregor and enjoyed it very much.

    Reply
  5. Thanks for the list. I’ve already started the day after I read about the Challenge. I’m not always sure which category my choices fall into so I appreciate the suggestions. Also being an overachier, I’m looking forward to adding quite a few of each category’s suggestions on the list. Naturally I’m aiming to be a Super Unicorn so I’m greatly grateful to you.

    Reply
  6. Fabulous. Thought I would have read at least one or
    two but these are all new. I have Paper Love on the Kindle but hadn’t got to it yet .. I try to work my way forward ;). So that will be one. And I’ll pick up the Lee Winter book also for the Aussie in me. (The good left Aussie).

    Reply
  7. I am thrilled about this challenge. And challenging myself to unicorn level with the 12 bonuses. I guess we will see in December 2021 where I will be at. I am just mad I read so many last year ! Well no biggy, planning to discover plenty of new ones this year with this challenge ! So thanks !

    Reply
  8. Anything written by yourself, VK Powell or Lee Winters I have already read. So chose Falling Slowly by Lila Bruce and I really enjoyed her sense of humour – she definitely may join the ranks of authors I enjoy reading. Thank you so much for putting this together.

    Reply

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