The Best Football Romance Novels
It’s that time of year – the constant roar of the crowd is now my background meditation (cough) every weekend. Pretty much as soon as the first round of Monday Night Football opened up, I got the irrepressible urge to re-read a football romance.
I’ve read this one so many times, at least once a year.
And as I pressed the button on my Kindle, I thought I’d recommend some more of my favorite football romances to the rest of the world!
(Before I get started, here’s the usual caveat. Y’all. There are SO MANY football romance novels. Hundreds, if not thousands. I know there are a few that I’ve left out, so please feel free to recommend your favorites to me!)
Here we go.
As I mentioned, you probably need to read the Chicago Stars series by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I’ve read most of them (I think?) but my top 2 are the stories of Molly and Phoebe Sommerville; It Had to Be You (Book #1) and This Heart of Mine (Book #5) . This is a series where you can definitely jump around but I think it’s really nice to read #1 and then #5 back to back, since the heroines are sisters.
I have a special fondness for Nobody’s Baby but Mine (Book #3), too, mostly because of the side characters and the second half of the book.
Of the three of these, It Had to Be You is definitely VERY football focused, the other two much less so.
(Second Caveat: These books are over twenty years old, on average. Let me tell you how old the first book is – Donald Trump is mentioned - FONDLY! - and it’s pre-Apprentice. I still enjoy them but I’ve noticed that some of the attitudes and references have not aged well. In addition, there are some sex scenes that are old-school-esque borderline-consensual/ non-consensual. FYI.)
Another romance that is football adjacent is Changing the Play by Julia Blake. The heroine is a sports agent and the hero is a reporter but football obviously plays a big role in the book.
Next recommendation! Sidelined by Suzanne Baltzar! I recommended this here and I’ve also had the hankering to re-read this during football season. Seriously, people. This is such a good book. Go grab it. (Hear me talk to Suzanne on Women With Books here.) This one is about a female high school football coach and her offensive coordinator. If you are psyched up about #equalpay then this is the book that will have you sighing and fist bumping your pals.
Also full of football players and the women who show them the score? Alexa Martin’s Playbook series! Start with Intercepted (Book #1) and you’ll fall in love with Marlee’s voice and wit. (And bonus points! Alexa is a former professional football wife herself! Hear my chat with her on Women With Books here!)
And speaking of WAGS, Naima Simone’s WAGS series should be required reading for anyone who loves a seriously swoony football hero. Start with Scoring With The Wrong Twin and enjoy the sexy, witty, sweet ride.
And uh… While I was making up this list I kept remembering one more book… and I realized, it was mine!