Trope Talk: Revisiting Second Chance Romance Novels

A long time ago, I wrote a post about how I really don’t like second chance romances, but I had five exceptions that I talked about. Since I made that post, I think my thoughts on Second Chance Romances have sort of evolved. It is still not my favorite trope, but I do think I have a greater appreciation for it and I think, I hope, I might be better able to pinpoint what I like in a second chance so I can do a better job picking ones I like. In this post, I’m going to look at five second chance romances I loved last year and try to figure out what makes them special.

Second Chance Romance: Trope Talk
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Venus in Capricorn + Romance Recs

The key word that comes up in CafĂ© Astrology’s Venus in Capricorn explanation is competent and, honestly, what’s better than competence porn in this day and age? (Let’s set aside that actually I love messy characters who do not have it all together because same! Your messiness is appreciated, messy characters!) Anyway, aside from competence and the willingness to prove it, individuals who have their Venus sign in Capricorn also are likely to know where the relationship is headed, they want commitment. And yet, it sounds like they also may have loner tendencies. So when they commit, they COMMIT, but it may take a bit, I guess. So, let’s talk book recommendations!

Venus in Capricorn + Romance Recs
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January ARC Reviews: The Wife Upstairs and The Ex Talk

I am so delighted to talk to you about two books that I really enjoyed, one of which is a new favorite! Already out from St. Martins is The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins and The Ex Talk by Rachel Solomon is out from Berkley on January 26th. I am so thankful for both the publishers and Netgalley for the review copies so that I can tell you all my thoughts on these two books. Let’s jump in!

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Book Recommendations for Capricorns

Happy Capricorn season, everyone! It is finally time to talk with y’all about recommendations based on Capricorn traits. Capricorns are persistent and always willing to work hard to achieve their goals, so they’re definitely the kinds of people we want to read books about. They are usually realistic, sensitive, practical, and disciplined, all of which are traits that serve them well in the pursuit of their goals. So let’s talk about some books that might appeal to Capricorns!

Book Recommendations for Capricorns
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Quarterly Favorites: October, November, & December 2020

I know I’ve been giving you all a ton of content about the books that I loved this year and I hope you’ll indulge me for one more post to round out the year of quarterly favorites. These are my ten favorite books from October, November, and December, and to be honest with you, this list was really difficult to narrow down! Plus it includes a book that would have been an honorable mention on the Contemporary Romance Favorites if I’d read it just two days sooner. So, let’s jump in.

4th Quarter Favorites
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Favorite Backlist Books of 2020

I absolutely adore giving my favorite backlist titles their own time to shine, so let’s not waste any time because these are some absolutely fantastic books and I don’t want you to miss out on them if you kept putting them off like me. I will say, these books are in no particular order because I could not have ranked them if you had threatened me.

Top Ten Favorite Backlist Books of 2020
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January ARC Reviews: Ever After Always, Scandal in the VIP Suite, and Flirting with Forever

I am really, really lucky to receive a number of review copies from Netgalley, for which I am extremely thankful. I also occasionally drag my feet on reviewing them, but Ever After Always by Chloe Liese is out today! And the physical copy of Scandal in the VIP Suite by Nadine Gonzalez is as well, I believe, though you could get the ebook since January 1st. But!! Flirting with Forever by Cara Bastone doesn’t come out until January 26th so I’m ahead of the game there. Regardless, thanks to Netgalley for the copies of these books. Now let’s jump into me actually reviewing them!

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#SnowInLoveBingo Wrap Up, The First Time

So, as y’all know, I had some really grand plans for my #SnowInLoveBingo TBR. And then December hit and I just really didn’t feel like reading. That is, I didn’t feel like reading until I realized it was because I only wanted to read Nalini Singh, and specifically I wanted to re-read Guild Hunters. So I figured I might as well take advantage of that and since it was more or less the only thing I wanted to read, I leaned into it. Eventually I read some holiday novellas and filled a few more squares with that and then I remembered I was supposed to buddy read The Chocolate Kiss by Laura Florand with Aarya and that sounded good. So the next thing I knew, even though Aarya wasn’t yet up for The Chocolate Kiss, she created a group DM with me, Charlotte, Jess, and her and I just went on a bit of a Laura Florand dive and didn’t emerge for a bit. And finally to round out my re-reading and my reading in general, I decided I wanted to re-read Alisha Rai’s Forbidden Hearts series, which is one of my favorites. So, here we are and I’m really pleased to tell you about the 25 books I read for Round One (for me) of #SnowInLoveBingo. I am already hard at work on Round Two so that I can actually hopefully tackle some of these TBR books, but we’ll see how it goes. I’m still half in the mood to throw all of my rules out the window and keep rereading or reading only novellas. But for now, the wrap up of Round One!

#SnowInLoveBingo Board for #SnowInLoveBingo running from December 1, 2020 to February 28, 2021.
Row One: Set Outside the US/Europe: Archangel’s Enigma, Family Drama, Archangel’s Storm, Hot Beverage: The Chocolate Kiss, Meta: Crazy, Stupid Bromance, and Fluffy: Wrapped.
Row Two: Childfree HEA: Wrapped Up in You, Into the Woods: Archangel’s Viper, Black Historical: Love’s Serenade, Feels Like Home: Archangel’s Blade, Fake Relationship: A Christmas Gone Perfectly Wrong
Row Three: Reread: Angels’ Blood, Cover/Title You Love: Hate to Want You, Happy Holidays: Noelle the First, Last Book Acquired: The Chocolate Thief, Audiobook or HEA: Archangels’ Shadows
Row Four: Blogger Rec: Snow-Kissed, Brown Eyes: Santa’s Helper, Small Town by AOC: Hurts to Love You, Snow: Archangel’s Legion, F/F Contemporary: Party Favors
Row Five: Messy Characters: Wrong to Need You, Specific/Unusual Profession: The Chocolate Touch, Rules/Lists/Resolutions: Missing Christmas, Music: Archangel’s Heart, Retelling/Mythology: A Rose in Winter
Created by: @danis_bookshelf, @ardentlyaarya, @graciouslyjen
Artwork By: @sarbethart (Instagram)
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Favorite Non-Contemporary Romances of the Year

So this post is still romances released in 2020, we’re just eliminating the majority of the books I read to focus in on all of the other categories of romance that I tend to neglect. But let’s hop to it because these are some great books, if I do say so myself!

Top Ten Favorite Non-Contemporary Romance Books of 2020
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Favorite Non-Romance Reads of 2020

I read so many books this year and although most of my 310 reads were romance, 61 books this year were not! So, I wanted to share my top ten of those books. This list was actually really tough to put together because I read a lot of incredibly nonfiction books, some really amazing thrillers, a couple of excellent literary fiction, and Susanna Kearsley books. However, we are, because I am extra, still focusing solely on 2020 releases, which admittedly knocks us from 61 down to many fewer. Anyway, let’s dive into my top ten!

Top Ten Favorite Non Romance Books of 2020
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